Snow Removal Contracts: Have you Read the Fine Print?

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Like it or not, winter’s around the corner. If you’ll be signing a snow-removal contract, here’s some things to look out for.

A written contract is clearest

An old saying goes “a verbal contact is not worth the paper it’s written on”. That’s not actually true, as verbal contracts are legally valid. So, a snow-removal contract can be made either in writing or verbally. The advantage of a written contact is that the terms are set out in black and white, which can help prevent disputes about what you and the company actually agreed upon.

Before signing, you should make sure that all the terms are clearly stated, especially the length of the contract, the price, the means of payment, and the conditions under which snow removal will take place. For example, you could agree with the company on the quantity of snow that must fall before they have to remove it.

Fixed price contracts

Some companies offer fixed price contracts. This means that you pay a fixed amount for a certain period of time regardless of how much snow falls. If you sign a fixed price contract covering several years, the company can’t raise the price from one year to the next, even if more snow falls in some years.

However, a contract can provide for extra fees under certain conditions. If there is such a clause in the contract, make sure the conditions and the cost are clearly stated.