tractor plowing snow on a walkway

Commercial Snow Removal Budgeting: Avoid Getting Buried This Winter!

As winter looms closer, snow removal becomes a more immediate concern – specifically, snow removal for your commercial property! Commercial snow removal can be a big expense, especially if it’s a long, cold winter.

However, safety is a top priority for you as a business owner; here are some great ways to maximize your snow removal budget and keep your property clear and safe all winter long.

Think Salt Alternatives

Salt is one of the most important aspects of preparing for winter. Without proper de-icing techniques, snow removal becomes twice as difficult as it should be. However, this year’s impending salt shortage will drive prices up, and you should be talking to your snow contractor about it now! There are plenty of salt alternatives from which you can choose, and you can read all about them here.

Remember, it’s up to you to discuss salt prices with your snow contractor. They will be able to get rock salt, but prices will be higher and it will negatively impact your budget if you aren’t careful. Start asking questions now, before the snow arrives, so you’re not put in a bind later.

Plan for the Worst, Hope for the Best

Snowfall in our area can be unpredictable. Make sure you keep up on the good old Farmer’s Almanac to help understand what to expect, but a good rule of thumb is to plan for more snowfall than predicted. You never know when a Nor’easter could rear its ugly head, so over-budget wherever you can.

The best thing about Pennsylvania winters is that the worst is generally over at the beginning of the fiscal year. By the end of March, you should have a pretty clear idea of your remaining budget (if there is any) and where it can be reallocated.

Prioritize Properly

When it comes to snow removal and de-icing, you have a few important decisions to make. If you’re a rental property owner and people are constantly coming and going from your property, winter safety should be of the utmost concern to you. If you’re a business owner with a small parking lot, you may be able to get away with salt preparation and plowing services in the lot, but handle the sidewalks yourself.

Your budget should directly reflect the amount of work you require. This seems obvious, but snow removal companies have seen it all. Demanding complete, comprehensive services for a huge space with a tiny budget is simply not possible, or fair to the snow contractor. A good rule to follow is weighing the financial outcome if snow is not removed properly. Tenants of a rental property with poor snow management may be wary come lease renewal time, and businesses with poor snow removal will have to close if their employees can’t safely get to work.

Snow and ice are no laughing matter when it comes to the safety of your employees or tenants. Proper budgeting and asking the right questions will ensure a safe winter for yourself and your customers, while keeping your business in the green (even through a whiteout)!

If you need help deciding how to budget your snow removal and ice preparation, give the professionals at Hively a call at 717-292-5696 and we would be happy to help!