Seeking Advice to Start Snow Removal Business - Snow Plow Forum -†Let's Talk Snow Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 22 Old 08-15-2019, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
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Seeking Advice to Start Snow Removal Business

Hello Folks,

I am new to all this, so please give me some time to catch onto all the details, and get familiar with this website.

I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, so we are no stranger to snow. I am currently working a part-time job and starting college full-time later this month. I wanted to inquire about the possibility of starting my own snowplowing business, where I live we average 218 inches of snow.

A rough outline of my business plan is as follows:

Truck $20,000
Boss V-Plow $5,000
Extras (Lights, etc.) $1,000
1 Year of Commercial and General Liability Insurance $4,000

I am estimating my monthly expenses as the following:
Maintenance $420
Accounting $100
Fuel $500

What am I missing?

I want to know how many accounts you think I could handle (I am thinking just residential), and what you think my revenue, and profit would be. Also, what software is good for planning the routes, and keeping a log of times, conditions etc?

Here is the truck I was looking at: https://www.keweenawautomotive.com/2...3/Details.aspx
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post #2 of 22 Old 08-15-2019, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by UpperPeninsula View Post
Hello Folks,

I am new to all this, so please give me some time to catch onto all the details, and get familiar with this website.

I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, so we are no stranger to snow. I am currently working a part-time job and starting college full-time later this month. I wanted to inquire about the possibility of starting my own snowplowing business, where I live we average 218 inches of snow.

A rough outline of my business plan is as follows:

Truck $20,000
Boss V-Plow $5,000
Extras (Lights, etc.) $1,000
1 Year of Commercial and General Liability Insurance $4,000

I am estimating my monthly expenses as the following:
Maintenance $420
Accounting $100
Fuel $500

What am I missing?

I want to know how many accounts you think I could handle (I am thinking just residential), and what you think my revenue, and profit would be. Also, what software is good for planning the routes, and keeping a log of times, conditions etc?

Here is the truck I was looking at: https://www.keweenawautomotive.com/2...3/Details.aspx
Plowing snow and full time college probably wonít work out for you given the nature of the job and school demands.
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post #3 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 04:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UpperPeninsula View Post
Hello Folks,
where I live we average 218 inches of snow.

A rough outline of my business plan is as follows:

Truck $20,000
Boss V-Plow $5,000
Extras (Lights, etc.) $1,000
1 Year of Commercial and General Liability Insurance $4,000

I am estimating my monthly expenses as the following:
Maintenance $420
Accounting $100
Fuel $500

What am I missing?
Houghton can get over gets 300" of snow.

what does $100 accounting mean?
Do you have a business like a LLc, INC or a CO?
you do know why having a business set up before hand is advantageous

Are you going to Gogebic community collage?
what are you studding? ski area management?

a job, school and start a business?
I'm thinking you are butting off more that you can handle.

if you still are thinking that you want to plow some snow.
forget the insurance, but register a LLC then post a add at the grocery store or any place with a notice-board and just plow a few residential drives when you can.

are you going to skip school for however ever long the storm lasts?

are you able to fix things yourself on the fly or will you need to find a good shop to fix your truck and plow?

there are a lot of plowjockeys in Houghton already, and its a cutthroat business so unless you can plow 24-7 , have a in, or are able to acquire $30-40k in work and have a back up truck your better off spending your money on school and beer.


PS your going to get a higher quality response at the other place" plow ...site" that is.
why anyone would post here for help is beyond me, connor,
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post #4 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 04:54 AM
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op
why spend so much$$$ on some truck that doesn't even have a plow.
a truck that will probably get stuck a lot, and need a lot of maintenance.

just get this truck then drop out of school because this truck will
make you rich.

https://www.truckpaper.com/listings/...82-walter-ncus
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post #5 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 05:17 AM
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Cost of Snow plowing in Michigan
$68.75 per hour (Range: $52.50 - $85.00)
$44.38 per visit for a typical driveway and sidewalk (Range: $35.63 - $53.13)

In the UP pricing will be on the lower side of the scale.

A residence with a 1 to 4 car driveway will take a snow plow a few swipes to clear the driveway. It will not take much more time to clean a 4 car driveway versus a 1 car driveway so that should not drive the price up. It will cost $25 to $50 per visit to plow a driveway. For most storms below 12" of snow.

most residential customers will also want their sidewalk cleared.
It may cost an extra $5 to $20 to shovel the walkway.
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post #6 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by SnoFarmer View Post
Houghton can get over gets 300" of snow.

what does $100 accounting mean?
Do you have a business like a LLc, INC or a CO?
you do know why having a business set up before hand is advantageous

Are you going to Gogebic community collage?
what are you studding? ski area management?

a job, school and start a business?
I'm thinking you are butting off more that you can handle.

if you still are thinking that you want to plow some snow.
forget the insurance, but register a LLC then post a add at the grocery store or any place with a notice-board and just plow a few residential drives when you can.

are you going to skip school for however ever long the storm lasts?

are you able to fix things yourself on the fly or will you need to find a good shop to fix your truck and plow?

there are a lot of plowjockeys in Houghton already, and its a cutthroat business so unless you can plow 24-7 , have a in, or are able to acquire $30-40k in work and have a back up truck your better off spending your money on school and beer.


PS your going to get a higher quality response at the other place" plow ...site" that is.
why anyone would post here for help is beyond me, connor,
Amigo, I have nothing to do with post.
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post #7 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 06:48 AM
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Originally Posted by SnoFarmer View Post
op
why spend so much$$$ on some truck that doesn't even have a plow.
a truck that will probably get stuck a lot, and need a lot of maintenance.

just get this truck then drop out of school because this truck will
make you rich.

https://www.truckpaper.com/listings/...82-walter-ncus
How little you know about me... I would never suggest dropping out of school to buy a Walter... are you high on crack.
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post #8 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 07:14 AM
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Where does the college kid just starting college get his money?

.A $25-$30k loan plus for truck &plow, Add in the rest of lifeís costs like ,snowblower, salt, insurance, rent, Utilities ,beer , girls, school,Food and miscellaneous items is a fairly large nut to carry every month for a full time student.

Then during winter break(Christmas) and spring break youíll be staying put in case it snows.
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post #9 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 07:16 AM
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Whatís wrong with dropping on the school many who do earn more than their counterparts
unless youíre going to be a doctor or get a doctorate or a masters degree in a relevant subject itís just not worth it.

You will easy Out earn your peers who went to college just by starting in the trades now.
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post #10 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by SnoFarmer View Post
Where does the college kid just starting college get his money?

.A $25-$30k loan plus for truck &plow, Add in the rest of lifeís costs like ,snowblower, salt, insurance, rent, Utilities ,beer , girls, school,Food and miscellaneous items is a fairly large nut to carry every month for a full time student.

Then during winter break(Christmas) and spring break youíll be staying put in case it snows.
Previous job gonzo porn director?
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post #11 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by SnoFarmer View Post
Whatís wrong with dropping on the school many who do earn more than their counterparts
unless youíre going to be a doctor or get a doctorate or a masters degree in a relevant subject itís just not worth it.

You will easy Out earn your peers who went to college just by starting in the trades now.
I doubt that given the nature of businesses to use the lowest paying contractors....
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post #12 of 22 Old 08-16-2019, 01:01 PM
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Op:

I have to say in honestly— I don’t think you have any idea how hard it is to operate a business...
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post #13 of 22 Old 08-18-2019, 02:37 PM
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I guess the op isnít going to come back?
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post #14 of 22 Old 08-19-2019, 04:39 AM
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I guess the op isnít going to come back?
whats going on ? have you lost all control over your multiple personalities.
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post #15 of 22 Old 08-19-2019, 11:33 AM
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whats going on ? have you lost all control over your multiple personalities.
I wouldnít ask questions... i would merely state my intentions... for example I am toying with idea of plowing my own road one night.
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post #16 of 22 Old 08-28-2019, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by UpperPeninsula View Post
Hello Folks,

I am new to all this, so please give me some time to catch onto all the details, and get familiar with this website.

I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, so we are no stranger to snow. I am currently working a part-time job and starting college full-time later this month. I wanted to inquire about the possibility of starting my own snowplowing business, where I live we average 218 inches of snow.

A rough outline of my business plan is as follows:

Truck $20,000
Boss V-Plow $5,000
Extras (Lights, etc.) $1,000
1 Year of Commercial and General Liability Insurance $4,000

I am estimating my monthly expenses as the following:
Maintenance $420
Accounting $100
Fuel $500

What am I missing?

I want to know how many accounts you think I could handle (I am thinking just residential), and what you think my revenue, and profit would be. Also, what software is good for planning the routes, and keeping a log of times, conditions etc?

Here is the truck I was looking at: https://www.keweenawautomotive.com/2...3/Details.aspx
Snowplowing can earn you a lot of money however, it comes with a lot of headaches. Chances are when it snows, school will be closed so the conflict will be minimal. However, the biggest issue is the truck/plow breaking. Even if you purchase all new equipment, it will break. It is a given. You hit something you can't see under the snow or you skid into something. And if you truck gets disabled on your first account, then you may not be able to finish your route for the day and chances are, you will lose customers. This is also predicated on your ability to plow.

That being said if you want to dabble into the business, I would suggest you work for an existing company where you earn less money but eliminate a lot of the risks. You still will lose revenue if you break down but you will have support to help you get back up an running and the accounts will still be taken care of.

Snowplowing paid for many trucks of mine and I made a very good business of it with a peak of 5 trucks working at once. Now I have all my trucks paid and I sold most of them and the only driveways I plow are mine and a few family members for free. I gave away all my accounts to my workers.
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post #17 of 22 Old 08-29-2019, 11:01 AM
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Snowplowing can earn you a lot of money however, it comes with a lot of headaches. Chances are when it snows, school will be closed so the conflict will be minimal. However, the biggest issue is the truck/plow breaking. Even if you purchase all new equipment, it will break. It is a given. You hit something you can't see under the snow or you skid into something. And if you truck gets disabled on your first account, then you may not be able to finish your route for the day and chances are, you will lose customers. This is also predicated on your ability to plow.

That being said if you want to dabble into the business, I would suggest you work for an existing company where you earn less money but eliminate a lot of the risks. You still will lose revenue if you break down but you will have support to help you get back up an running and the accounts will still be taken care of.

Snowplowing paid for many trucks of mine and I made a very good business of it with a peak of 5 trucks working at once. Now I have all my trucks paid and I sold most of them and the only driveways I plow are mine and a few family members for free. I gave away all my accounts to my workers.
What about multi day little storms?
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post #18 of 22 Old 08-29-2019, 11:25 AM
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What about multi day little storms?
When it snows at night or late in the day, you have time in the early morning or evening to take care of it. It should not interfere with classes. On the rare occasion it does, you would have to miss a class to take care of the clients. That is why working for someone or having a partner comes in very handy because one can cover for the other in case of school or a mechanical breakdown.
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post #19 of 22 Old 08-29-2019, 12:37 PM
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When it snows at night or late in the day, you have time in the early morning or evening to take care of it. It should not interfere with classes. On the rare occasion it does, you would have to miss a class to take care of the clients. That is why working for someone or having a partner comes in very handy because one can cover for the other in case of school or a mechanical breakdown.
I worked in college and it was only possible because I worked 5pm-11pm/12am at UPS and went to school 9am to 3pm. Remember it just isnít class time, you have papers and projects and so on.
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post #20 of 22 Old 08-30-2019, 08:12 PM
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Originally Posted by jmoriweb View Post
When it snows at night or late in the day, you have time in the early morning or evening to take care of it. It should not interfere with classes. On the rare occasion it does, you would have to miss a class to take care of the clients. That is why working for someone or having a partner comes in very handy because one can cover for the other in case of school or a mechanical breakdown.
I had a small snow removal and lawn-care/ grounds maintenance with a couple seasonal employees for about 10yrs and worked in the trades. I got out of snow removal and lawn-care/ grounds maintenance because it snow remove was so sporadic and I couldn't take anytime to enjoy life during the season which for me was September 1st to June 1st. Yes I made good money but it came at a cost that currency couldn't compensate for.

But kudos to you for wanting no to be your typically entitled college student, it shows great character and work ethic. Have you considered being a sub contractor rather than being a contractor while in school. Yes you'd be leaving money on the table but you won't have to deal with the headache's as an owner,
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post #21 of 22 Old 08-31-2019, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by The Real KonnoR Exum View Post
I had a small snow removal and lawn-care/ grounds maintenance with a couple seasonal employees for about 10yrs and worked in the trades. I got out of snow removal and lawn-care/ grounds maintenance because it snow remove was so sporadic and I couldn't take anytime to enjoy life during the season which for me was September 1st to June 1st. Yes I made good money but it came at a cost that currency couldn't compensate for.

But kudos to you for wanting no to be your typically entitled college student, it shows great character and work ethic. Have you considered being a sub contractor rather than being a contractor while in school. Yes you'd be leaving money on the table but you won't have to deal with the headache's as an owner,
What good is a sub contractor that works only intermittently?
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post #22 of 22 Old 08-31-2019, 02:16 PM
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You could probably make it work if you have a backup truck or someone to watch your back that you can trust. Plan on sacrificing some, meaning partying, holidays maybe, evenings, early morning. Start small and be sure any debt is manageable. You have to be patient and work hard,you have to survive the bad times and don't think your over the hump during good times. it will take a little while to get your name out there. Good Luck
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