• Online Events For Landscapers!
    With GIE+EXPO cancelled, virtual education and product launches are filling up the fall. Check out dates for Caterpillar, Exmark, NALP, and more. Click here to learn more.

Sub contractors

Eager Beaver

LawnSite Member
Location
Michigan
Currently looking into expanding my snow plow business and hiring a few experienced sub contractors to help lighten the load. What are your current subs hourly rates using a 7 1/2 plow as a base? Of course they all must carry liability insurance and have dependable vehicles etc. Also if they are salting with say a tailgate salter how do you base that hourly rate for time and material?
 

GeoffDiamond

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Maine
I don't have any subs, so I can't help you on rates. However if it was me, i would do all the salting myself, or have them supply their own salt, and pay a flat fee for salting.

This way you don't have to worry about, them useing your salt on their own jobs, if they have a few they do in adition to yous. Again i don't have any subs, this is just a possible problem i see.

Geoff
 

John Allin

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Erie, PA
Somebody up that way should be able to give you a number to work from.

We use a good number of subs, and in our immediate market we pay them by the hour. We start with a base rate for subs that are new and have no experience. We give them additional money per hour for having certain qualifications and/or equipment.

Examples......

$1 /hr more if they have any experience
$1 /hr more for their second year with us
$1 /hr more for an 8 ft. blade
$1 /hr more for having a cell phone (CB's are mandatory)
$1 /hr more if the phone is a Nextel
$4 /hr for having a Vee blade
$1 /hr more if driving a truck with an automatic trany
$1 /hr more they have an EIN # (it helps separate them from you in teh employee/independent subcontractor arguement
$1 /hr more if they have CGL insurance coverage in excess of a million dollars (CGL at $300,000 is mandatory)

We "hold" 15% of their money if they don't have a certificate of insurance with us that has valid auto coverage, and we "hold" 10% of their money if they don't have CGL coverage.

We make them sign a legal subcontract agreement that details out all aspects of our relationship with them, including a 2 year non compete (that is reciprocal - if they have their own accounts, we cannot quote those accounts for 2 years).

Subs demand and expect to be paid on time and in full. Ours bill us at the end of the month and get paid net 10 days. We have NEVER missed a payroll in 22 years. And our subs get paid more than any other contractors subs in the market.
 

PINEISLAND1

LawnSite Member
Location
WEST MI
We are about an hour West of you. We pay $45 an hour for a 7.5 straight blade, and thats about normal here. I think I could find enough people to do it for less, probably in the $30 range, but you get what you pay for it seems.
 
OP
E

Eager Beaver

LawnSite Member
Location
Michigan
Thanks Tom
I appreciate your response. You are right on getting it cheaper ,but you will end up paying a lot more in the long run for all sort of different problems.
Thanks Again
 

plowking35

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
S.E. CT
I just recieved a bid pack, and it said. No subcontractors.
HAHA yeah right. If not for subs, I would have no business.
Dino
 
OP
E

Eager Beaver

LawnSite Member
Location
Michigan
Dino, As the original thread stated we are in the process of expanding and there is no way possible that you can have that much equipment that is needed without looking into using sub contractors. I subed for a few years myself before I took on the headaches of expanding into my own business. At that time I never backstabbed the person I was working for by trying to take his accounts. We still have a great working relationship and help each other out if one of us is broken down etc. will see what happens
 

plowking35

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
S.E. CT
I totally agree. It was the specs on the contract that said no subs, not me.
As most larger plowers will say, subs are the back bone of the operation, with out them I would have only 3 trucks instead of eight.
Dino
 
Top