Cost-Effective Graffiti Removal

Most BIAs hire a graffiti removal contractor and pay a flat monthly fee which is promoted as a ‘continual removal by patrol’ and usually ranges between $300 to $600 or higher per month (depending on area patrolled).

This is a rip-off perpetrated on BIAs by these companies because BIAs are considered to have deep pockets and the oversight is known to be lax or non-existent. The contractor agrees to regularly patrol (meaning occasionally) with a company vehicle and sometimes reports a removal or two. This is not verifiable – once the BIA has hired this service no one bothers to confirm if any graffiti was removed.

Without knowledge or proof that any removals were done, the BIAs continue to pay out the monthly flat fee.

There is one BIA on the Danforth which has solved this conundrum. It found and hired a contractor under the following conditions;

  • The patrol truck spots graffiti during patrol and takes a picture of the graffiti and its location.
  • The picture is emailed to the Chair with a price for the removal of that specific location. Most removals cost between $30 – $50 each.
  • The Chair confirms that the BIA has acquired the signed (landlord’s) authority at that address and authorizes the removal.
  • The contractor swings by and removes the graffiti. Usually once-a-month removals are done collectively to reduce costs.
  • Once removed, the contractor emails a second picture of the now-cleaned location with a monthly invoice for the work done, as authorized.
  • The BIA knows it is paying for work actually performed with before-and-after proof provided.

This approach requires a little oversight, but nothing unreasonable. It also is fair and based on ‘as needed’ removals – not just a monthly fee without any proof of work actually done.

Most contractors will decline such an arrangement – preferring to be paid monthly. If enough BIAs dig in their heels and insist on such a cost-effective solution, the contractors will acquiesce.

If you cannot come to such terms with your graffiti removal service, contact Graffiti 911 (which is listed on the right side-bar under “Freelancers services offered to BIAs”). They will accept such contract conditions because that is the current arrangement with the aforementioned Danforth BIA.

Full disclosure:           This recommendation was not requested; nor was it made to generate revenue for BIA Buzz. It is shared with all BIAs as a good solution to be researched.

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