Understanding a Commercial Snow Removal Contract
When you find a snow removal company, you probably have to sign a contract for services. It can be challenging to choose the right contract type for your property. Winter is an unpredictable season as you plan within a budget. However, all hope is not lost. You need to stay informed of your choices and weigh the options that will work best for your commercial property.
Know Your Contract Options
With any snow removal service, there are several options for your contract. You can choose a time and material, per occurrence, or seasonal snow removal contract. While they may seem like the same and provide similar services, they all have unique advantages and disadvantages.
With a time and materials contract, you will only pay for the services used at your property. This contract is great for those who don’t want to pay for unused services. However, it can cause a hassle for those who wish to have a set budget. If you have a time and materials contract, you should be expected to pay more than anticipated. You never know if your area could be hit with substantial amounts of snowfall. With this contract, you need to keep open the line of communication with your service provider.
The per occurrence contract is also known as a per push contract. It is an excellent option for those who want to know how much the snow removal plans will cost for the season. With these contracts, you will have a defined price for all the snow and ice removal methods used on the property, such as clearing parking lots, shoveling sidewalks, and applying salt. If there is a massive blizzard, your per occurrence rates might be raised. In many cases, this is called a “blizzard fee.” Since the provider has to use more manpower and equipment, it cannot be counted as a single occurrence. The snow removal cost in your area will depend on the timing, snow weight, duration, and other factors related to the storm.
With a per occurrence contract, there are some other points to consider. For example, similar storms can vary in price according to the time of day and duration of the storm event. You have to remember that all storms behave differently, and you shouldn’t expect to pay the same for every snow removal. Like the time and materials contract, you need strong communication with your snow removal team. With clear communication, you will know in advance if more equipment is required for the site so that you can prepare for an uncharge in costs. Per occurrence contracts are hard to budget. If you sign this type of arrangement, you should be ready for unexpected winter expenses.
Finally, the last type of contract service is called the fixed fee contract. It may also be known as the lump sum or seasonal snow removal contract. These contracts are prevalent in areas that receive above-average snowfall. With this type of arrangement, you will know exactly how much you will pay for the year. Many snow removal companies base their fees on the average snowfall rates for the past few years. For many of these contracts, they are signed for multiple years to balance out the more substantial snow years against the snow-free winters.
With the fixed fee contract, you will save some money on your snow removal costs, especially if compared with a time and materials contract. However, if your area experiences a lighter than average snowfall, it benefits the provider. You do take a risk with this type of arrangement. With the multi-year agreements, you can save a few dollars down the road.
You need to define your services with these types of contracts. A professional snow removal team will clearly outline your costs in the contract. You should make sure the provider understands your expectations before, during, and after the snowstorm. It is best to sign a multi-year agreement with an established company. If the company goes out of business, you could be without money and a team to clear your outdoor spaces. It is vital to find a professional company that handles those significant snow events and provides regular communication to keep your property free from snow and ice throughout the winter.
Understand the Services
Now that you understand the different contracts, you want to make sure that all the services are provided in your service agreement. At the very least, your snow removal team is responsible for snow plowing. With these services, the team will clear the parking lots, streets, sidewalks, and any other space near your property. For the most part, they will use shovels and snow blowers to move that snow away from vital areas. Many property owners don’t want to be liable for a lawsuit stemming from a slip and fall accident. You want to ensure that your snow removal team understands the need for de-icing materials on your slick surfaces. Finally, you should know about snow hauling or banking services. Once the snow is removed, your provider will either pile it into a corner or haul it away. Depending on your preferences, this is something to consider when choosing a company for snow removal.
Charlestown Landscaping Is Here for You
At Charlestown Landscaping, we can help answer all those questions about your current or potential snow removal contract. You can count on us to clear snow and ice from your commercial property. Our teams will work throughout the day and night until the job is finished. If you want to learn more about our snow removal services, please take a few minutes to fill out the contact form.