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Saturday, March 8, 2008

How to make money with snow removal services ?

How to make money with snow removal services ?If you decide to have someone plow your drive, here's how it works financially:

1. You pick a snow removal company. You usually select based on price as well as terms (how often/under what conditions they'll plow your drive.)

2. Once you pick a company, you pay them for the full year upfront. I always found this to be interesting since 1) you don't know if you'll even need the service -- what if it doesn't snow much? and 2) you're paying them to render a service and you're not yet sure they'll render it. That's why I would never hire a firm without a solid recommendation from someone I trust.

3. The payment depends on the size/shape of your driveway. Ours is a standard, short, flat, two-car drive and I've seen quotes in the $250 to $300 range. We're about in the lowest price bracket there is -- and it can go way up from here.

4. This financial arrangement is a bet by both parties. The client is betting it will be a bad winter and he'll get his money's worth. The company is betting it won't be so bad that they'll lose money on driver pay, gas, salt, etc. during the year.

5. A friend who owns a snow removal company told me that the breakeven point is 25 trips. If he makes fewer than 25 trips to a location each year, he'll make money. If it's more than 25 trips, he loses money.

6. How many trips are needed depends on the agreement (my friend's company plows anytime it snows at least two inches), the amount of snow (of course) and when the snow falls (better during the day, on weekends, and all at once.)

Personally, we use a combination approach of shoveling and a snowblower. I have a small drive and not a huge amount of sidewalk space, so it's manageable.

What about you? How do you get the snow off your driveway and how much does it cost?

1 comment:

Carrick hadyan said...

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