Snow Removal Business: Get paid faster with these 6 tips



By David Crary   

Nobody likes to wait forever to get paid. How can you keep your snow removal business running if you still haven’t been paid for last month’s plowing? Ease your stress by shortening your wait with these 6 simple business tips to get paid more quickly:

1. Take advantage of invoicing with software

Your customers are never going to pay on time if you didn’t bill them on time. Snow removal software can send your work order info into Quickbooks with only a few clicks. The software will transfer all the information for you, saving you from typing everything onto yet another form for the third or fourth time. Then, another click or 2 and your invoice can be sent via email as soon as the job is done. The sooner you get your invoices out, the sooner your customers can pay.

2. Be timely

Don’t only worry about being timely with invoices and bills, but get those bids and work orders out more quickly too. This is much easier with specialized software, but however you do it, don’t procrastinate. Keep things moving. Never leave your customers waiting and waiting for a call back. Don’t slack off and let another company win your clients just because you didn’t get back to them soon enough. Do your best to stay on top of each stage of each job. Your effort will pay off with move revenue that comes sooner.

3. Communicate

If something changes or if a storm is about to hit, communicate right away with your customers so they know that you are paying attention and ready to service them. This creates trust that will improve your customer relationships and make you stand out as a caring professional. Seeing you on top of your game and acting so conscientious will motivate clients to act likewise and pay more quickly.

4. Require an initial pay

It is totally normal and acceptable to require a deposit at the beginning of the season. This helps you get started and protects you against clients canceling after you’ve invested in preparing to service them. Snow & Ice Management Association founder John Allin recommends charging clients for 2 non-refundable plowings upfront to cover your pre-season costs. This money also protects you if you are in an area that may fail to have any snowfall for the entire season. Another bonus that comes from initial payments is that they help you determine if the client is capable of paying you and establish an expectation of being paid promptly and fairly for your work.

5. Set up automatic payments

Encourage customers to sign up for automatic payments through their bank accounts or credit cards. These can be billed monthly or per job. When you are on auto pay, you are much more likely to get paid quickly. Your customers will be forced to pay you first, before other bills that they can wait to pay. Automatic withdrawals will save time and money not only for the snow removal business but your customer as well, so make the effort to set this up ahead of time.

6. Get the right equipment for the job

To get paid quickly, you need to get the job done well and in a timely manner. If you constantly have to switch up your equipment, you will be wasting time and money that you don’t have to spare. Your customers will perceive you as sloppy and slow and will probably act the same way toward you. If they waited hours to get out of their driveway, they may not feel bad making you wait a bit to get paid.

Customers may take their cues from you, so make sure you are showing them professionalism, punctuality and respect. Serve customers well, stay organized with good software, and communicate well. If you do all you can to set good payment expectations and set up the customer for success, you will get paid faster. Even a little improvement will go a long way.


If your snow removal business doubles as a lawn maintenance business, download our eBook for tips on buying software! 

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