Bert Hillyard Topaz Property Services Ltd.

Their Ventrac Equipment

1-3000, 1-3100, 2-3200 units with 4 snow blowers, 3 cabs for the winter, 2 lawn decks, 1 sweeper, 1 leaf blower and 2 slip scoops, 1 aerator

Their Ventrac Story

My name is Bert Hillyard of Topaz Property Services from Sault St. Marie, Ontario. We have about fifty-two hundred driveways that we took care of this winter, and we have about one hundred and fifteen lawns a week that we take care of. We've been in business for twelve years and plan to do it for many more.

We were looking to upgrade our equipment when we came across Ventrac, and the end result was we bought a used unit to try one out. We used it all summer. When we started using it with the blowing unit, the lawn deck, the sweeping unit it was "wow" for us! Why did we suffer for the first six years with these other pieces of equipment when we could of had this? As used as the equipment was everything worked, we could get parts for it and that just gives you confidence in Ventrac as a corporation and in the equipment itself.

Then we said okay, now we're going to get a new one and we bought two more and we're looking at our fifth one this fall. No one else is running any kind of equipment in the residential market like we have. A lot of them have got walk behind mowers. So they're out, they're exposed to the 37 below and that's all we're working with this winter, 37 below zero. You have the safety factor where the skin can freeze in 10 minutes. Whereas, our fellas are in the heated cab and they've got their coffee holder, which you don't have those built-in the cab yet but we mounted those as a modification. They don't have the Hawaiian shirts on yet, but they've threatened to do that just to make the other fellas feel that much worse.

We have it where we are doing eleven or twelve driveways each hour with the machines and that’s including the travel time and getting the driveway done. 
The driveways are getting done between fifty seconds and two minutes, depending on the size of the driveway. People are happy. A lot of times they will stand at their windows with a cup of coffee and just peek out the window and say, oh yea, there they are, and oh, now their gone. Thank you very much. And they’re happy. So the clients are happy, we’re happy.  The equipment’s running well and it’s just great. 

We start with one service, then they might say "Hey, can you come and blow my snow". We start out blowing their snow and then they say "Oh, can you do aerating for us", and yes, we can do the aerating, we can do the lawn, we can do the mulch, their grass cutting, and in the fall we can do their leaves. We start out with one service and we can offer them five or six services with the same unit. We are always looking at what other service are they looking for and is there an attachment that we can put on our Ventrac.

Other companies call us for help because they've got problems with their machines. They're down, they're trying to keep their clients, keep going and say "Hey, can you help us?" Although he's the competitor we're helping him to keep going and it's making sure those people get out, you know. And sometime down the road if he decides to give up they'll refer the clients to us.

The versatility, to be able to have those attachments, those units, be able to change so fast, do that quick change over, and then be able to meet the needs of your clients like that is something that I think is very unique to Ventrac.

We were looking to upgrade our equipment when we came across Ventrac. It was "wow" for us, why did we suffer for the first six years with these other pieces of equipment when we could have had this.Bert Hillyard

Why they are a Ventrac fan

We plan on having one of the largest fleet of Ventracs in Northern Ontario.