Originally Posted by hackitdown
Exactly...it is decent money if you do it on your own terms. To me a 14 hour route wouldn't work, but that sounds like a profitable day for you regardless. My route used to take 8 hours because the driveways were spread out. But I kept advertising, searching for better customers. When I got some new ones closer to home, I would drop the distant ones. It took 6 or 7 years to get where I am, and I don't have that many plow customers. But what I do have works well, it is fast, and I make good money for such a short route. As an example, I have one shared driveway with 4 houses. It takes 20 minutes to plow all 4. They all pay $45 each per push. I also have 3 additional drives on that same street, maybe another 25 minutes. I do 3 of my neighbors, all 3 take about 20 minutes. So that is 10 driveways that (even with drive time) are all done in under 90 minutes. Situations like these are the way to make it work.
A lot of landscapers don't realize that often times you are better off saying "no" to a customer. And that is especially true when it comes to plowing. I have a standard response to people who call from too far away, I just say that "I would love to help them out, but because of the distance I would not be able to provide the level of service they would need or expect". And at this point, even a mile off my route is way to far.
yah that's my problem, I have a 20 mile ride from my two furthest accounts, but i have a lot in between so its really not bad, just a little time consuming. and its hard for me to say no. But i'm starting to get a lot of accounts that are about 1-5 mins away from each other finally, so things are looking a lot better this year plowing wise. i'd like to get to the point where i make 2000 off a small storm 2-6" i know right now with all the new accounts i just got last week i am probably pretty close, which i think, starting with no accounts last year is pretty excellent. I retained 98% i only lost 2 or 3 customers but it doesn't even matter because they are very replaceable. They have been replaced with better customers that pay better. If only I got lawns this easy and quickly. hopefully next spring I will!