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Idaho teen makes $35K in 4 days by plowing Seattle snow

David Holston, 18, of Coeur d'Alene, ID, took to the Puget Sound streets to plow away the Seattle snow. (Photo courtesy of David Holston)

David Holston, 18, of Coeur d’Alene, has plenty of experience dealing with rough winters. So when the Seattle snow hit last week and the Puget Sound panicked, Holston crossed the mountains with his Dodge Ram and plow, and came in to scoop away the fear.

Holston was visiting Seattle to see his mother, who is currently at UW Medical Center, for her birthday. While he was in town during the snow days, he decided to try to make a little extra cash by clearing driveways.

From one Craigslist ad, business snowballed.

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The phone began ringing off the hook, and Holston was soon plowing parking lots for Amazon buildings, a Walgreen’s, a motel, a car dealership, a daycare, and many other businesses. He worked 12-hour days — even 24 hours straight at one point — and still did not run out of customers, he told KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson.

“I could have employed five plow trucks,” Holston said. “If I had a whole crew, I would have sent them all over to Seattle.”

With the region less-equipped to handle major snow events than other areas of the country, business owners were desperate to get the Idahoan’s help clearing away the snow.

At $750 per hour, it was a lucrative gig. Over the course of four days, “the Lord blessed me with about $35,000,” Holston said.

The snowplow was not, however, a one-time windfall — er, snowfall. The ambitious teen has his own business license (and insurance), plowing snow by winter and mowing lawns by summer.

“My parents taught me to work … you need to get out there and plow your field, make your living,” he said.

Holston hopes to make it to $100,000 by the end of 2019. At one-third of the way there in just the second month of the year, he’s off to a great head-start — and another round of Seattle snow would get him even closer. If snow falls over the Emerald City again this year, Holston plans to come back to town.

Despite his young age, he has quite a head for business; he plans to invest the profits into his business.

“This year, I’m hoping to expand my business, hire some brothers, and then go to town, bringing more customers in,” he said. “We’ll see what the Lord has in store.”

And while many 18-year-olds do not even know what kind of career they want to have, Holston has a detailed 10-year plan in the works, which involves selling the business after a decade.

“We’ll see what goes on, as businesses pop up, as I move forward,” he said.

Dori was impressed with the teen’s entrepreneurship.

“What a great story about a kid and a pickup truck, and you’re able to make a really great living just by hustling,” Dori said. “I love everything about that … This is a land of opportunity.”

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