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Working as a sub for another company and every storm problems

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by odd1or2even, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. odd1or2even

    odd1or2even Senior Member
    Messages: 117

    I have work of my own but not enough work to keep my trucks busy so I sub out a driver and a truck of mine to another company. Here's the catch..

    Every storm after I send the hours and amounts of materials there seems to be a problem. I understand everyone can do things differently but I'm being paid to spread my salt to their sites that I'm "in charge of" which is twice my cost of salt. OK, I get my salt loaded and then start my travel time to the site and then spread salt. Once I'm done, I stop the clock and write down how much time I spread salt (which would get subtracted off my plow time). This covers the driver for travel time to and during the site.

    Then I was told that when I salt, the time is already factored (so there is no travel time). But my question is, if I'm traveling 10-15 mins to a site to then spread .25T which takes 5 mins to drive/back around cars and then head out to another site to salt site two. How would you record everything? I'm being told that I'm being paid via the salt spread (which is double the price of salt). So they want me to "eat" the drive time, because I'm being paid the amount of spreading salt. It doesn't add up when I'm doing a small site. I hope this makes sense but if not I'll re-clarify... what to do?
  2. Drakeslayer

    Drakeslayer 2000 Club Member
    from Carver
    Messages: 2,803

    Increase the amount of salt spread.
  3. BC Handyman

    BC Handyman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,943

    Yup rtaise the price to 3x your cost to spread your salt.
  4. odd1or2even

    odd1or2even Senior Member
    Messages: 117

    It's my salt from my pile, but the price I get for the salt working for the sub was set with the contract. But I can always "spread more" to help offset the downfalls but trying to be as honest as possible because I do get paid within three days after the storm which is nice.

    Is this normal to have a sub supply his own supplies because my sites are next to the contractor we sub for? I figure it'd be easier and less time lost to supply materials but having second thoughts since their shop is about 15 mins away without weather... with snow then probably 30 mins.
  5. 32vld

    32vld Senior Member
    from LI, NY
    Messages: 622

    You have two ways to bill a job.

    You include drive time so you charge a lower hourly rate.

    You do not include drive time just time on the job so you charge a higher hourly rate.

    So you have to sit down and tell them if they are not going to pay for the drive time then you will have to charge a higher hourly rate.

    You may lose their business you may get more money.

    Your choices are accept them changing the rules, clarifying the agreement, walk away if they will not pay you what you want.

    To charge for drive time or not charge for drive time. Both ways are acceptable. Though the hourly rate has to reflect which way the work is billed.

  6. rsweeper

    rsweeper Member
    Messages: 45

    Real simple,,,,,dont do sub work. If they need to have you do there work, then they are either a company that cant handle what they have or cant buy new equipment. Or they are some nationwide company, that dosent even own any equipment. Why do work for them, they will lose the account, and maybe you will pick up the account direct. If you think you must do sub jobs, then you tell them up front what your charges are and that is what they are going to pay you. there is no other way to do it for you to be happy with what you get paid.
  7. 94gt331

    94gt331 Senior Member
    from usa
    Messages: 293

    It's sounds like a pretty good deal with the other company if you get paid 3 days later, so basically you don't make as much money when your salting only, but the other company needs to make alittle them self so if your making out well with the plowing I would stick with it for now until you find more work for your extra driver good luck to you.
  8. 90plow

    90plow Senior Member
    Messages: 739

    Why not just have a flat rate say $150 and they charge $180. They make %20 and there is no argument on travel time. If you can't make money park the truck it's cheaper than losing the money.
  9. White Gardens

    White Gardens 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,665

    If they can't pay you an honest wage to do the work, then they aren't making any money to begin with.

    Bill out your last storm and say by-by.... No use getting beat up on your billing and them not paying.

    Then find another contractor you can do sub work for that can pay.

    Unfortunately, your contractor probably got account that pay per season, and is pinching pennies. Find a better one that pays out reasonably.

  10. CityGuy

    CityGuy PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 17,220

    just curious as it is not stated. IS there a written contract for your work? Plowing/salting what ever? If not get one and set the terms that both parties can agree upon. If there is not written contract you have no leg to stand on as far as liability for a slip and fall or how much you get paid or anything. Thus the situation you are in.
  11. White Gardens

    White Gardens 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,665


  12. odd1or2even

    odd1or2even Senior Member
    Messages: 117

    By all means I have no hard feelings business is business. I do have a written contract with them but it was stated at (X) per hour for a 4 wheeled drive plow truck, and then (Y) for my salt spread per ton. Also (Z) for my laborer and (A) per bag of calcium.

    So from that basis it doesn't say drive time is included, or not included. I'm fine with the driving time from when I leave a site I'm on the clock to the next site. But when I spread salt, technically I'm being paid by the ton for the spreading of salt, so I have to keep track of my salt spread time. This will then be subtracted from my driving time (which is OK). But when they ask me to pre-salt, this is where I'm driving to a site to spread a little salt, but then can't bill them for my drive time like I would in a snow storm. Does this sound about right?
  13. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    We only pay subs when they are in the lot working, Travel time is on them.
  14. CityGuy

    CityGuy PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 17,220

    sounds like you need a spread sheet for times
  15. qualitycut

    qualitycut PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,231

    Is the issue that your not making enough money or do you just feel like your not because of the not getting paid for drive time? I can see both sides, but really your only doing work for them when your actually spreading salt, travel time is just one more variable for the contractor to have to worry about if they are getting cheated or not. Jmo
  16. Jguck25

    Jguck25 Senior Member
    Messages: 594

    the way they are doing it makes sense to me... you should have just factored this into your price spread per ton. i wouldnt want to pay a sub to drive from their house for the salting, id want to pay per application, or per ton like you do. its not my fault if the sub lives an hour away from the site.. im just saying his way seems fair, you just didnt realize that was the way it was to be done
  17. qualitycut

    qualitycut PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,231

    Exactly I doubt he pays his employees to drive from thier house to work.
  18. cod8825

    cod8825 Member
    Messages: 91

    In Kansas city the contractor we work for has set pricing for each job salting and plowing based on inch increments. Travel time is on us time at job is on us if we can get job done fast or slow doesn't matter. Service calls if any are fixed by us at no additional cost. Salt and ice melt materials are provided by them at there depots. Hope this helps.
  19. OSCLandscaping

    OSCLandscaping Member
    Messages: 32

    From this statement my feeling is all truck time is included in price "Y". If you wrote the contract a court would side with them. If they wrote the contract a court "might" side with you. Gray areas in contracts almost always go in favor of the party that did not write the contract.
  20. Joe D

    Joe D Senior Member
    Messages: 605

    If there is a set price for salt applied then travel time is on you. Your saying you want time and double material cost, you should just have a minimum charge per lot.