A skid steer can be a very profitable piece of machinery. Here’s a list of 7 of the best ways to make money with a skid steer.

Some of these jobs you can do will require different skid steer attachments. Within each of these different strategies, we’ll discuss whether or not you will need a specific attachment for it.

The best 7 ways to make money with a skid steer are small demo jobs, clearing snow, loading/unloading jobs, gardening jobs, grading work, renting it out, or even selling it entirely. You can even use a combination of these to make the most money with just a single skid steer.

#1 Do Small Demolition Jobs

One of the best ways to make money with your skid steer is by using it to perform some small demolition jobs for individuals or business owners around your geographical area. 

This is a great way to get some use out of your equipment while also earning money for doing so. There are many people out there who are looking for skid steers to get a specific job done due to how versatile a skid steer loader can be.

With the dexterity that a skid steer offers, digging out areas that are to be used for projects like garages, decks, or other small structures in a tight space is much easier and more convenient than getting a large excavator to do the job.

That is why residential areas, such as neighborhoods, benefit from hiring a skid steer. It is able to get into the area easily and perform jobs that would prove quite difficult and precise for a full-size excavator to tackle.

Also, people will be able to save money by hiring only a skid steer rather than an entire construction crew or other demolition company. That is great news for you, because you could be the one to supply them with the skid steer (and operator) that they need!

To make it known that you would like to make yourself available for such jobs you can post ads around town, in the phonebook, or on various social media sites. Advertising is key to let people know that you are offering your skid steer up for services.

Make sure to use keywords and common search terms so that your services will appear at the top of the list when people try to find skid steer demolition services. Also, including pictures of your skid steer is always a good idea so that people can see it is in good condition.

Aside from this also make sure to show things such as your training experience, and time spent in the industry. After getting a few jobs done, it’s a good idea to include some record of your past services, or even better, reviews by previous customers.

A good rate to start at when working small demo jobs is around a minimum of $75 per hour, though you can also work for higher than this. Make sure to research around to find out how much people in your area are commonly charging for their services, and then base your pricing off of that.

At that rate you have the possibility of making up to $140,000 a year if you work 5 eight-hour days a week! That’s more than triple the price of the skid steer itself already. So just doing demo jobs for one year will have paid off your skid steer more than 3x!

#2 Rent Your Skid Steer Out

Another great way that you can make money with your skid steer is by renting it out to be used by other individuals, or business, for their projects and demo jobs. The great thing about this is that you can do it in conjunction with performing your own small demo jobs, allowing you to make passive income alongside your work!

Being able to use your skid steer on the days that it is not rented out is a wonderful way to increase the money you make and still get the most use out of your equipment.

When renting out your skid steer you will need to pay for things such as repair for the equipment, maintenance on your skid steer, cleaning costs to keep the skid steer running smoothly, and of course insurance costs in case anything may go wrong.

Even with all of these things that need to be taken care of, you can still expect to see quite a good profit coming in by renting your skid steer out. If you are able to perform maintenance and repairs on your skid steer by yourself, then you can actually save quite a bit of money.

skid steer

Advertising that you want to rent out your skid steer is much the same as advertising for small demolition jobs. Place ads everywhere possible, and make sure to include pictures of your equipment and rates for use.

And of course, don’t forget to get some legal advice so that all your bases are covered should you decide to rent out your skid steer.

#3 Use it to Clear Snow

If you live in an area that experiences quite a bit of snowfall during the winter, then skid steer services will prove to be extremely valuable. People hate having to shovel out their driveways and streets, and having a skid steer available to do the job for them can be a great option that they may just be willing to explore.

Just clearing out someone’s driveway could net you upwards of $50 depending on how large the size of the driveway is, and even with the largest of driveways you can get the job done in a matter of minutes.

Some attachments that you would need to perform this job effectively include the obvious snow plow, but also you could pick up a snow scraper and squeegee, as well as a blower and a pusher. Getting all of these attachments will mean you are equipped for anything that gets thrown at you, and being able to handle any job means you can make more money.

Even better, if you are able to clear driveways of a number of houses in the same neighborhood you can start to rack up quite a large profit with almost no effort at all. If someone hires you for this job and the neighbors notice that you are offering these services, then they may even be encouraged to hire you to do their driveways as well.

It’s a win-win situation for all involved. The residents get their driveways cleared quickly and cleanly, and you get to make a good amount of money all in a small area.

Before getting into this line of work always make sure that your equipment is able to handle the blistering winter conditions. Some heavy equipment is known to not do so well in very tough snowy conditions, so coming prepared is always better than getting caught with your pants down halfway through a job (you don’t want to get stuck in someone’s driveway)!

#4 Perform Loading and Unloading Jobs

Yet another great way to make money with your skid steer is by working with local businesses and assisting them in loading and unloading their products. There are almost always individuals and businesses who are looking to get a hand with loading and unloading things.

Simply attach the forklift attachment to your skid steer and get ready to perform some work loading and unloading things in warehouses, stores, and construction sites. 

This is similar to the demolition jobs you can do in terms of rate, so start with $75 per hour of work and see how things go from there. Make sure to take into account a delivery fee, minimum work hours, and also ensure you are knowledgeable of the standards in the area and what your own rules are.

And, of course, advertise your work well! Use common keywords when advertising online, provide pictures and work experience, and make it clear that you are offering your services at competitive rates.

#5 Do Gardening Work

There are many gardeners, both professional and recreational, who could potentially benefit from the assistance of a skid steer. Skid steers are especially helpful when needing to relocate trees and other plants that have already grown established roots.

You cannot simply dig up a tree and move it somewhere else, you need to dig up quite a large area around the base of the tree in order to keep its roots intact and prevent it from perishing. So, a skid steer is the perfect piece of equipment for this job. 

By placing the tree and the large clump of dirt that retains its roots into the bucket of your skid steer you can move it to its new location with minimal effort, and make quite a good amount of money for doing so.

If you have a tree spade attachment or an earth auger attachment for your skid steer then this is a great line of work you could get into, as gardening services could always use a helping hand to tackle bigger products that require the precision and power of a skid steer.

You can also do broader gardening and landscaping work, such as clearing large areas that are going to be made into garden beds, planters, or whole new areas of the backyard. The time that it would take for a couple of guys with shovels will be greatly reduced if a skid steer does the job for them.

Also, the precision and dexterity that a skid steer brings means that it can perform tasks in someone’s backyard that a full-sized excavator would not be able to do. You can fill a niche that many are looking for with your equipment, and make a good amount of money from it.

An additional service that you can offer with your skid steer is clearing out brush, hedges, and unwanted plants. Using available attachments for the skid steer such as the brush cutter and tree shear you can quickly and easily clear out large areas of unwanted foliage for individuals and businesses.

Rates all depend on the type of services that you are offering with these gardening jobs, and the more intensive ones will of course charge more than simple ones, so you should make sure to do some research to get a better idea of what prices in your area usually sit at.

If the job includes more digging and demolition than simple clearing and moving of plants and trees then you can most likely comfortably price it closer to a small demo job. But if the job requires less effort, then you’ll need to adjust your prices accordingly.

#6 Sell Your Skid Steer

Should worse come to worst and you have decided that none of these other options work for you. then you can always settle on selling your skid steer. This is a viable choice for many who do not know what to do with their skid steer, and are looking to make some money rather than let it sit on your yard.

Some benefits to selling your skid steer include the fact that once you sell it you no longer have to worry about it. You never have to stress about repairs or the equipment breaking down, maintenance will be a thing of the past, and instead of having a power vehicle that may never see any use you now have money right in your pocket.

Also, instead of trying to make some money with your skid steer one job or rent at a time, you can get quite a bit of money all at once by selling it off. Of course, if you use your skid steer to actively make money then you have a steady stream of money and possibly passive income (if you rent it out).

Selling it off will get you a substantial amount of money right up front, but you won’t have the opportunity to use it to earn money through the year, of course. Always take into account the pros and cons of selling off your skid steer before going through with it, and explore all the other options you have before settling on a decision.

#7 Offer Grading Work

Depending on the size of your skid steer, you could help people in your area with grading work.

Grading work is essentially getting a piece of land ready for construction. It consists of ensuring a piece of land is smoothed out (as far as the level goes), or ensuring that the land is at the intended slope.

According to Home Advisor, grading an area of land costs about $0.47-$2.28 per square foot, so grading an acre could cost anywhere from $20k all the way up to $100k.

To determine whether or not your skid steer is capable of land grading, check out Virnig MFG’s blog post on the topic.

General Overview

So, now you know 7 of the best ways to make money with a skid steer.

Your job now is to figure out the way(s )that make the most sense to you, and put them into practice.

One awesome strategy is using your skid steer for some type of work, e.g. grading, demolition, or others, at the same time as renting it out.

Well, not exactly at the same time, but renting it out and doing some work in the same time frame.

For example, renting it out 2 weeks of the month, and performing demolition work the other 2 weeks of the month.

Best of luck with your skid steer, and be sure to leave us a comment letting us know what strategies you plan to implement.

Josiah Brown is a 20-year-old Entrepreneur and writer who is on a life-long journey of experiencing and learning.