The 8 Best Ways to Lower Your Garbage Removal Costs

One of your primary responsibilities as a property, restaurant or retail manager or owner is to find ways to reduce the costs to operate your business — and that includes the cost of having garbage removed from your premises. There are several ways in which you can achieve substantial reductions in waste removal expenses — particularly if you contract with a waste management company that can leverage savings on your behalf.

Here are eight ways to save money on garbage removal:

1. Hire a waste management company/broker. These companies have the advantage of numbers — because they represent numerous accounts, they are generally able to get a better price from the waste hauler. Since the broker thoroughly understands the garbage removal business from both the customer’s and hauler’s perspectives, the broker is in a position to work things out equitably and to the benefit all parties. The customer receives a good price on waste removal, while the hauler is more likely to receive prompt payment and additional business from a broker. In addition, a broker will monitor the cost of waste removal for the customer and ensure that pricing does not sporadically increase.

2. Audit your waste removal bill every month. Many times, when customers hire a garbage removal service, they fail to notice that the contract allows the company to raise prices at certain intervals. As with any binding document, read your contract carefully before you sign and review your bill each month to be sure you are paying what you agreed to pay.
3. Issue a Request for Proposal (RFP). If you have a large number of stores/locations, it’s wise to put your garbage removal service out for bid to more than one waste hauler. A RFP is generally a good way to get the best price on waste removal — particularly if you allow a management company to handle the bidding process, since they can leverage additional savings for you.

4. Hold a reverse auction. A reverse auction is one in which the roles of buyer and seller are reversed — sellers compete to get your business. A reverse auction gives you the advantage of using the Internet as a vehicle to pull in bids from waste removal service providers. The prices may or may not be disclosed in the auction. But be warned: while you may be quoted a very low cost by a hauler in the beginning, unless the contract is written to your advantage, the price might go up in just a few months. Hire a management company to handle this process for you and you’ll be assured of getting the lowest prices on waste removal.

5. Bid out the service yourself if you have multiple locations. The more locations you have, the better price you’re going to get on garbage removal. Send your bid out to every possible hauler in your area. Keep in mind that management companies have many more contacts than you do, so they have an even better chance of getting a good price.

6. Recycle. Manage your waste more efficiently by implementing a recycling program and reduce the cost of waste removal. Recycling is cheaper than trash removal. Diverting of your company’s waste materials into a recycling bin does take time and effort — but much of the waste that comes out of retail stores, office buildings and residential communities is recyclable. If you provide recycling containers onsite and educate employees about sorting the materials into those containers, you will be putting less trash into the trash bins. Therefore, you will need less trash hauling, which is more expensive than recycling hauling.

7. Negotiate. Instead of putting your waste removal out for bid, you can try calling multiple garbage haulers and negotiating a price that you think is fair. This can be tricky if you don’t actually know what a fair price is. If you’re unsure of pricing or your negotiating skills, hire a management company to take the guesswork out of getting the best price on waste removal.

8. Bid the right service for your business. When putting your garbage removal out for bid, make sure you’re asking for the type of service appropriate to your waste output. Meaning, don’t pay for half-full containers. When a hauler quotes you a price, you’re getting a price for a container hauled or emptied on as many days as you specified. Whether or not your containers are actually full doesn’t matter — your trash will be emptied on those particular days. Bidding the right service — one that hauls full containers almost every time — is tricky. The pickup should be on the day after your containers are full. A waste management company can ensure this happens. A good management company wants your trash containers to be full on the days the hauler comes so that you are getting the most value for your dollar.