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Oasis1
09-28-2005, 12:06 AM
I had this customer for 2 years. Good paying, easy work, but the guy never payed on time. I always just let it go because it was a good job and he eventually did pay. But this last time, after two months I got tired of it. I told him very nicely that I havent received payment and I couldnt cut until i did. Finally one month later I received payment, and on the invoice he wrote" I think I'll do this from now on, thanks for a great job. Now, even though payment was always late what do you think I should do. Call him, send a letter, wait till the end of the year, or just let him go.

Frontier-Lawn
09-28-2005, 12:24 AM
just let it go.

Dashunde
09-28-2005, 12:44 AM
First, I dont think I would have told him "I cant cut until its paid".
That is probably what steamed him.
Simply reminding him might have been much better... you know, let him know you have not forgotten that he owes you.

Maybe just a quick call or letter to let him know that you were already aggrivated by 2 other customers who hardly ever pay <wink>, and your ultimatum to him was an accidental result of frustration.
He may have you back... he just got his slow-pay feelings hurt because you didnt have faith in him to pay after 2 years.

Or... he's just out of cash (hence the slowness) and really is doing it himself.

QualityLawnCare4u
09-28-2005, 12:50 AM
I would also just let it go. If he was 2 months late on his car payment or mortage do you think the bank gives a squat why he is late?

Brianslawn
09-28-2005, 01:29 AM
start using bobbys 26 page contracts to avoid people like that in the future

SproulsLawnCare
09-28-2005, 04:13 AM
I would also just let it go. If he was 2 months late on his car payment or mortage do you think the bank gives a squat why he is late?
Exactly! The bank isn't going to care if your customers don't pay on time. You still have to make the payments on your equipment, etc.. The gas station won't give you gas to cut his lawn with and except payment when he decides to pay you.

TURFLORD
09-28-2005, 06:50 AM
I've got a customer or two like that. One has been with me for 15+ years and has put up with some sh!t from me so I don't mind if she pays every other month. The other has been with me only a couple of years and from the start sends in a check every third month. He always pays the finance charge and always catches up by January, so ok. A third customer obviously has money for other things so they're getting sued in December. Customers are not going to die if the grass doesn't get cut, so if money is a little short or if their income is a little erratic, they're going to pay the mortgage and not the lco. Sometimes for the sake of business you have to swallow your pride.

The Captain
09-28-2005, 12:08 PM
Oasis1.....Do you add a late fee? I didn't see that in your post. If not, do so! and compound it each month. That will at least pay for some of your money. Also you may want to introduce him to a contract, something new you are starting, that requires a month (or at least 1 cut ) in advance.

Just some thoughts.....Jim

lawncuttinfoo
09-28-2005, 02:47 PM
his message sounds to vague, I say keep mowing and if he indeed did mean that he will mow the lawn not you, just tell him you understood the message that someone else was in charge of paying the bill, thats why it was late, you thought he was saying "I think I'll do this", as in pay the bill ontime himself, "from now on"

That way you have a few extra mows to charge for. payup

But if you would like to take the high road and be a respectable business I say at minimum give him a call and ask him what he meant exactly by "this".
He might still want you to mow.

Envy Lawn Service
09-28-2005, 04:54 PM
Yeah, this is vague... I don't think I understand exactly...

2 year slow payer right?
You got tired of it once he got two months late right?
Told him nicely you were suspending service uptil he paid right?
One month after that (3 months total) he finally paid, note included right?

So did you actually go through with suspending service where he has been without for a month?

ilovethisgame
09-28-2005, 09:18 PM
It's not a good customer if they don't pay you on time. Every once in a while if a customer forgets to mail a payment that's one thing but, a habitual late payer is more trouble than they are worth. Fill the spot in the route with someone who respects you enough to pay you on time.

gman44
09-28-2005, 09:36 PM
I have one account who is always behind . Her house is among five others I maintain each week . Its worth it to me to keep her even when she is late . I have never been stiffed and I upsell the shrubs etc. and she evetually pays. I will let her go 4-5 weeks tops , then i'll call or stop by. If she was far away or a single lawn in an area that took me time to get to I would feel differently.