Should you take on a 9 story building pressure washing job?

There are times when jobs will present themselves and they will be a perfect fit for you. Not too big of a job and not too small. There are other times however when the jobs will be just way too far outside of your reach. When you come across them, you may have an inclination to bid on them in hopes they will help launch your lawn care business to a higher level, but there is also another option you can take, as we will see in this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum.

One lawn care business owner wrote “how would you quote pressure washing a 9-story apartment complex? The building is 95′(h) x  768′ (w) = 72,960 sq ft. Right now they just want us to do one side of the building. Pressure washing is a new service that we’re adding on, so we don’t have all the tools and accessories to fully support it. This job just kind of fell into my lap as we perform the lawn mowing services for this property and they asked if we could handle the pressure washing as well.”

A second lawn care business owner said “this is one serious matter to consider. I am willing to bet that your lawn care business insurance will not cover you pressure washing anything over 3 stories. That tends to costs extra. Heck, your insurance may not even cover you offering pressure washing in the first place unless you have already checked into it.

Pressure washing an apartment.

Pressure washing an apartment.

I’d suggest you call a pressure washing contractor that does this all the time and then mark it up or get a cut. They will have the equipment to perform the job and also know how to bid this properly. They will know the questions to ask the property manager about what the expectations are and what the results will be.

Some money is better than none and you can probably network with this contractor for more work that you can do. Your best bet is to sub this out.

There are lifts that will do 85′ but they are rare and expensive to rent. Have you ever been up in one? I have been about 60′ up and man do they rock and I mean side to side. Throw in a little wind and you better take your sea sick pills.

A third business owner added “as a business focused on lawn mowing I am betting you don’t have the specialize equipment, like a lift or a bucket to do the job. I don’t know of anything except a few high reach bucket trucks that go 90 feet in the air. What I do know is I don’t want to be up that high trying to pressure wash anything. I feel a lot more comfortable with my feet on the ground.

If you are seriously considering doing this yourself, you need to look into how much it will cost for renting something to get 90+ foot in the air. The rental price alone will probably deter you and the property owner.

Why try to get into offering a new service on such a grand scale? How about focusing on residential sidewalks, driveways, siding at first? Keep the max height no higher than 2 stories. That is plenty high enough. Like was previously stated, subcontract it out, stay safe, and live another day.”

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