January 17, 2020

It’s going to be very busy but I’m ready for it.' Snow removal app expects big business ahead of heavy snowfall

Posted on: www.wxyz.com by Jenn Schanz

PONTIAC, Mich. (WXYX) — Winter weather is barreling toward metro Detroit this weekend, with a possible nine inches of snow in some areas; it's the second largest storm this winter.

For local snow removal contractor Ronnie Draper, this means pay day.

"It’s going to be very busy but I’m ready for it," he told 7 Action News.

An up-and-coming app is helping him get jobs faster. It's called SnoHub . Draper joined about a year ago.

“It’s very much used in the Northeast, coming up from New York up to Boston. Connecticut, there it’s extensively used," said SnoHub president Victor Green via phone.

Nationwide, there's around 10,000 private contractors signed up with the app. So far in metro Detroit, only between 150-200.

Draper said since he joined, he's welcome an additional $15,000 in business.

It works sort of like TaskRabbit; connecting area contractors with homeowners who need snow removal services in their area.

Contractors get notified via the app, and then can choose to take or leave the job.

"As soon as you get that, you get the location. How many yards it is, what they want. If they want salt, so salt. If they want the snow plow or if they want the shovel," Draper, who owns Beautiful Brick Paving, explained.

Customers don't have to be at home or go outside. The app sends you a photo of the finished job before you pay.

The price can vary depending on what you’d like done and how big a driveway is. Smaller driveways can start around $40 and it goes up from there.

Customers can also choose to jump to the front of the virtual line, but it will cost.

“It’s a 30 percent increase on the standard fare but they get priority service. They can choose a time, and as long as they’re prepared to pay the extra 30 percent, they will go to the top of the list," Green said. It's an option designed for people who need removal done at a certain time.

Draper said generally he starts seeing business before the snow falls. Friday evening he received an alert while speaking with Action News.

"They're asking for their driveway. Just the driveway, after the storm."

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