Most of us don’t think much about junk.
But Mike Pirrone of Bay East Hauling thinks about it.
Junk is a big part of Mike’s business.
Mike grew up in Queen Anne’s County and worked in residential construction, but after a few years found he wasn’t really enjoying the career path he’d chosen. He also happened to own a dump trailer that was mostly just taking up space. Deciding he needed to either sell the thing or figure out a way to make use of it, hauling for hire came to mind. Maybe that was something he could do to pick up a few extra bucks on the side, at least enough to maybe justify keeping his trailer.
For a few months during the height of the Coronavirus pandemic, Mike dipped his booted toe into the idea of hauling as a viable trade. He researched the industry, studied our area to see if there might be enough need for what he had in mind, and looked into how to best get the word out online and in the community. In the beginning he concentrated more on the delivery aspects of his venture, but with junk removal as an option soon saw how so many potential customers had so much stuff to discard. Appliances, furniture, hot tubs, construction debris, the range of rubbish people were aching to say goodbye to seemed enormous. It didn’t take too long for Mike to decide there was potential in the gig. Plus it could be interesting, never the same old thing. It was “mind-blowing what people get rid of.”
As 2020 was ending, Mike’s construction company lost a long-planned big job due to the spike in the costs of materials. On January 1, 2021, he took a picture of his Bay East Hauling Services business card and made it official. Soon after, he dropped his construction tool pouch for good. Mike Pirrone was now in the hauling profession all the way.
Timing is everything. After initial downturns nationwide, demand for hauling services surged in the wake of Covid. People were staying home more, rethinking their personal spaces, remodeling or redecorating, trying to teach themselves that less clutter is better all the while clicking that Buy Now button. At the same time, commercial concerns were renovating to adapt to the changing use of public space. Mike got busy fast.
Based in Centreville, Bay East Hauling services Queen Anne’s, Kent, Caroline, and Talbot counties as well as parts of Anne Arundel, and specializes in three broad primary types of work. First and foremost is Removal – the full or partial, residential or commercial, indoor or outdoor property cleanout, including specific assignments like emptying storage units and clearing brush piles. Second is Demolition. Mike and his team will knock things down for you, be it entire structures or just an interior wall, bath or kitchen. The third service offered is Hauling and Delivery. This would be getting such bigger items as boats, small vehicles, construction equipment, or landscaping products like gravel and soil from one place to another. Bay East is versatile and can customize what they do to fit the customer’s needs but most tasks they undertake fall into one of these three categories
Residential and commercial cleanouts have become a major part of the enterprise. All kinds of clients require these services, including property buyers and sellers, landlords, Realtors, lenders, private companies, and governmental entities like law enforcement offices and health departments. For many people the compulsive psychological condition of hoarding has become a more recognized phenomenon. One service that Bay East provides is helping families and individuals deal with the potentially extreme conditions that can result in a person’s emotional inability to throw anything away. People literally become overwhelmed with stuff, so much stuff the walls and floors are unobservable except in the paths to the TV to the bathroom and to the fridge. Discoveries of infestations and biohazards are not unexpected. Remaining mindful of the sensitive circumstances and stresses that can complicate such matters, often family members are in grief or dealing with the incapacities of a hoarder, is part of Mike’s responsibility.
For jobs large and small, Mike provides estimates. In some cases a larger than normal crew might be needed, or specific equipment rented. East Bay has cleared sites that were basically dumping grounds filled with multiple vehicles, appliances, boats, building materials, all kinds of detritus. For these big efforts, everything will be spelled out contractually to avoid complications once the work has started. Items to be kept by the clients are removed ahead of time. Items being searched for can be noted to Mike and his crew will keep their eyes peeled.
As part of his community with a reputation to uphold, Mike approaches every Bay East interaction with dependable professionalism. He’s licensed and insured. He says customers can sometimes find cheaper ways to unload junk but the providers aren’t always reliable. Stricter government oversight of dumping practices has added another layer of accountability when it comes to disposing of junk. With the rise in concern for environmental obligations and sustainable eco-friendly techniques, the industry as a whole is seeking out ways to improve opportunities to recycle or donate reusable items. The fastest growing sector of the business, E-waste – outdated and nonfunctional computers and phones and such – are of particular concern as they can leak hazardous materials and should not be disposed of in landfills.
Bay East Hauling enjoys excellent reviews online. His customers praise Mike as being reliable, prompt, and reasonably priced while he believes what he offers is “honesty, trust, and transparency during what might be a very stressful time in someone’s life. My goal, really,” he says, “is to never leave anybody with a problem and nowhere to turn.”
Mike Pirrone can be reached at [email protected] or 410-714-8428. Bay East Hauling can be found online at BayEastHaulingServices.com
Brent Lewis is a native Chesapeake Bay Eastern Shoreman. He has published two nonfiction books about the region, “Remembering Kent Island: Stories from the Chesapeake” and a “History of the Kent Island Volunteer Fire Department.” His most recent book, “Stardust By The Bushel: Hollywood On The Chesapeake Bay’s Eastern Shore”won a 2023 Independent Publishers award. His first novel, Bloody Point 1976, won an Honorable Mention Award at the 2015 Hollywood Book Festival. He and his wife Peggy live in Centreville, Maryland.