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View Full Version : First & Last time ( I promise)


Nelson
09-16-2002, 09:18 PM
Well I did some Hedge trimming + Mowing.

This is my first time I ran into this....& It will be my
last time......

Took the check 2 the bank & a few days later guess
what?

It BOUNCED ....

I must say from this ordeal that I have learned a lesson...
It's gonna be cash from now on.

I am gonna pay the dues & ask for the check back from
my bank 2 show the next non regular customer....

That this is why I am asking for cash up front......

I refuse 2 let myself worry about this.......

The only thing that bothers me is.....She had me do
some extra things that WAS NOT in the deal...

I am so tired of being the nice guy. I went back to her house today to find out the deal...but to no avail.

I will pass by again, but i know they will not answer the door

Some people have some Nerve......

What do u guys do on this kind of situation?
:gunsfirin

soccer coach
09-16-2002, 09:31 PM
Depends on how much it is for,but if it was say over 50.00 or so I would turn it over to the D.A. and they will get you paid. Good luck, I hate low life scum that rip off the working man:angry:

robert payer
09-16-2002, 09:38 PM
Do not let up. Collect the money that you are entitled to. I do not have checks bounce. People always pay us on time. Problems are experienced some times in the winter with plowing. You get a new customer and they do not pay. I will not call and pester them but I send invoices with notes until the account is paid. Do not beg! We send invoices that are over 30 days on a different color paper (Blue, Red) what ever. This shows through the envelope where the name and addresss shows. When using envelopes that have the clear windows. Red is like advertising to the mail man that these people do not pay their bills. For extreme cases send a hand written post card that states that it is most important that they call you. They then know that the nitty gritty can be hung out like dirty laundry with the 2nd postcard. They should pay you then.
Good luck with your collection.

Nelson
09-16-2002, 09:38 PM
soccer coach,

Yes it was over $50.00...

Total bill was $100.00....

Bottom line is I Learned a lesson from a one timer......

It's a good lesson learned though.

From Now on it's gonna be In God We Trust or No Work
from the get go......:D

Nelson
09-16-2002, 09:41 PM
Originally posted by robert payer
Do not let up. Collect the money that you are entitled to. I do not have checks bounce. People always pay us on time. Problems are experienced some times in the winter with plowing. You get a new customer and they do not pay. I will not call and pester them but I send invoices with notes until the account is paid. Do not beg! We send invoices that are over 30 days on a different color paper (Blue, Red) what ever. This shows through the envelope where the name and addresss shows. When using envelopes that have the clear windows. Red is like advertising to the mail man that these people do not pay their bills. For extreme cases send a hand written post card that states that it is most important that they call you. They then know that the nitty gritty can be hung out like dirty laundry with the 2nd postcard. They should pay you then.
Good luck with your collection.

Robert,

I love your last name.........:cry:

robert payer
09-16-2002, 09:42 PM
Yes it is against the law to bounce checks!
Let them know that. Tell them that you are going to file a police report.

KenH
09-16-2002, 09:51 PM
A perfect opportunity for clientcheck.net.

Let others Be Aware.

65hoss
09-16-2002, 09:52 PM
I bet you have a "bad check division" somewhere. Look in your local county gov't section of the phone book.

ProMo
09-16-2002, 09:54 PM
http://www.mortgage-investment.com/Real_estate_and_mortgage_Forms/formpage/4badcheckform.htm this is the exact letter the local da office had me send they said if payment and service charge isnt paid in 30 days they would prosecute I was paid in 2 days

Nelson
09-16-2002, 10:12 PM
Thanks guys......For the Info.....

I LOVE this site:)

Darryl G
09-16-2002, 10:12 PM
I've only had one bad check, but I was able to collect on it. My bank returned it for insufficient funds and I just kept checking the lady's account every couple days (we have the same bank) until the money was in her account. I don't know how it is by you, but I can try to deposit a 2nd time if it doen't clear the first. The teller was nice enough to deposit it to my account as cash. I'm still trying to collect my returned check fee though.



Good luck.

BigJim
09-16-2002, 11:17 PM
In God We Trust,Everyone else pays Cash.

I do a lot of one time jobs,but its always cash first,then we work.

Jimbo
09-16-2002, 11:23 PM
Do a search. Someone posted awhile back about this and just about drafted a letter which you could use parts of.

Basically you need to send a request for payment stating that you are going to go through a collection agency if they dont pay. Even if your bluffing your chance is high the will pay up instead of taking the risk.

Jim

Brickman
09-16-2002, 11:41 PM
If you can find a good collection agency that check will get paid. Sure you won't get the whole thing, but you will get more than if you just let it go. If I had a check bounce on me I would call the guy ask him what was up and when I could stop by to be paid in CASH. If no anwser or he didn't call back in 24 hrs, I would leave another message that it was going to collection.

1stclasslawns
09-16-2002, 11:51 PM
Federaly they are responsable for the amount of the check, all bank charges and a handeling fee from you.

I have only had this happen 2 times, You can add a fee of up to twice the amount of the check or $50.00. I think.

Call them tell them you will deposit it on xxx day and it must clear or you will go to the DA. no ifs ands or butts.

then like was mentioned before go to their bank and cash it. No way out for them.

Jim

awm
09-17-2002, 08:33 AM
unless its a regular ,take it to their bank.
that way u find out quick, its bad or u get the money and the acct holder got heck to pay.i charge a questionabl e client ,[all are somewhat ,that way at first]
exstra 5 just for the bank stop.

CSRA Landscaping
09-17-2002, 01:57 PM
Bear in mind that it may actually be a mistake. Here recently we wrote down a deposit wrong, for whatever reason, and it caused two checks to be returned, which have been taken care of. You don't have to go for blood here.

Fantasy Lawns
09-17-2002, 02:23 PM
http://www.nfschecks.com/florida.html

Florida bad check demand form. This form should be sent certified mail, return receipt requested to the person who gave you the bad check. Even if they do not accept the certified letter it can then be taken to the State Attoney's office for criminal prosecution. It is important to be able to identify the person who gave you the bad check. Driving license number is good and/or description.

NOTICE

TO: (name of check writer)

FROM: (your name and address)

Re: Your Check No. ____

Criminal remedies:

Pursuant to Florida Statutes, section 832.07, you are hereby notified that a check, numbered _____, issued by you on (date issued) drawn upon (bank drawn on) and payable to (to whom payable), has been dishonored. Pursuant to Florida law, you have 7 days from receipt of this notice to tender payment of the full amount of such check plus a service charge of $10 or an amount of up to 5 percent of the face amount of the check, whichever is greater, the total amount due being $_____ and ______ cents. Unless this amount is paid in full within the time specified above, the holder of such check may turn over the dishonored check and all other available information to the state attorney for criminal prosecution. You may be additionally liable in a civil action for triple the amount of the check, but in no case less than $50 or more than $2500, together with the amount of the check, a service charge, court costs, reasonable attorney fees and incurred bank fees, as provided in Section 68.065.

Civil remedies:

Pursuant to Florida Statutes, Section 68.065, you are hereby notified that a check numbered _____, issued by you on (date issued) drawn upon (bank issued on) and payable to (to whom payable) has been dishonored. Pursuant to Florida law, you have 30 days from receipt of this notice to tender payment in cash of the full amount of the check plus a service charge of $10 or 5 percent of the face amount of the check, whichever is greater, the total amount due being $____ and _____ cents. Unless this amount is paid in full within the 30-day period, the holder of the check or instrument may file a civil action against you for three times the amount of the check, but in no case less than $50 or more than $2500, in addition to the payment of the check plus any court costs, reasonable attorney fees, and any bank fees incurred by the payee in taking the action.

Sent by certified mail, return receipt requested.


Don't take this wrong ...... but ....As a customer I would NEVER pay up front .... expecially CASH ....even if it was a one time hit .....Checks are part of business .... true to fact that I'll give discounts for Ca$h on work perfomed ;-> ....but payment is Always after the job is done ... this is not to say a depoist is normal ....Good Luck

Hodge
09-17-2002, 03:14 PM
This site works for all states (although I have not checked them all) just change the ending of http://www.nfschecks.com/XXXXX.html with your state

ie

http://www.nfschecks.com/texas.html:blush:

Gravely_Man
09-17-2002, 03:36 PM
Do not sit by and let them take advantage of you. You were hired to perform a service and are due restitution for said service. I know it is a hassle but you did your part and now they need to do theirs:eek:

Runner
09-17-2002, 06:42 PM
Just because someone bounced a check on you, I sure wouldn't just revert over to the "cash only" policy for all future prospective clients. That's a bit amateurish. It doesn't happen often, and when it does happen, the people are usually very cooperative in rectifying the situation. And yes, it's happened to me, only a few times in the nearly 20 years of service.

Nelson
09-17-2002, 09:09 PM
Originally posted by Runner
Just because someone bounced a check on you, I sure wouldn't just revert over to the "cash only" policy for all future prospective clients. That's a bit amateurish. It doesn't happen often, and when it does happen, the people are usually very cooperative in rectifying the situation. And yes, it's happened to me, only a few times in the nearly 20 years of service.

Not trying to be amateurish.....just looking 4 some input....that's all???????? ;)

CSRA Landscaping
09-17-2002, 09:11 PM
He gave you his input ...

eslawns
09-17-2002, 11:02 PM
I don't know if I'd call it amateurish, but I don't think I want that harsh a policy in a service oriented business. Around here you wouldn't get much work if you wouldn't take checks. Besides that, I don't want cash around. Less than $20 at any time. If somebody pays in cash, (rare) I take the money home.

I'd probably either have a policy where new clients pay each time I came until I develop a rapport with them, but it seems foolish to stop accepting checks.

BTW, in most states, unless you can prove a check was knowingly uttered with insufficient funds (very hard to prove) it only becomes a crime after you have gone through required steps to make them aware of it, and they don't make good on the check. Unless they are total dirtbags, they will be forced (judgement or garnishment) to pay what they owe, usually through a court office, until you get your money.

When this has happened to me, the people have generally fallen all over themselves to make it right. I've been stiffed 3 times. One Navy couple, he got out, they moved back to Ohio. Another lady's check bounced ($60) and it isn't worth the trouble because of where it is. The other is a commercial place that filed bankruptcy and left me with a $532 bill.

It's part of being in business. ANY business. Considering that only %50 of all medical bills are paid in full, I think my collection rates are good.

Runner
09-18-2002, 10:22 AM
Nelson,
Please don't misinerpret what I said as an insult or snide remark. I meant no offense by it, but realize that it may have sounded that way. I didn't mean anything bad, just giving an outside view as to how a business (in general) can sometimes present itself.;)

Nelson
09-18-2002, 03:02 PM
Hey Runner,

Everything is OK, I did not take it the wrong way.

I appreciate the Input. This was really my first dealings
with this situation. I just want to get some info....for
maybe next time..I can be more aware.

When I say Cash up front next time.....I do not know
if that will work or not?

This was not a regular customer...It was a 1 timer.

Now her phone has been disconnected.

I just do not understand people? They must forget that
I was there & performed work.....So hey that means I
know where she lives.........Unless she moved in a few
days......... :blob2:

Brickman
09-19-2002, 12:16 AM
Jump right on it man.

A collection agency can find people. And mess with their credit in a big way.

I have a great one here, small and locally owned. Real helpful for other small biz owners.

JimLewis
09-19-2002, 02:47 AM
I have to agree with Runner. Although I will word it not so kindly.

Insisting on a "cash only" policy is not only annoying it brands you as a scrub from day one. I don't care what kind of service I hire to work on my house or property. If they tell me from the get-go that it's cash or nothing, there's no way in heck I am gonna hire that guy. That just has scrub written all over it.

This just sends up all sorts of red flags. "Why does this guy need cash? Maybe he can't get a checking account..... Maybe he has trouble with the IRS.... Maybe he owes past child support and doesn't want to deposit money in the bank or get a real job because the state will confiscate his money."

I will tell you right now there is not a respectable, well established, service business in your or my area who has a "cash only" policy. It's about the most un-professional thing you could do. And you will never have a big successful business with a policy like that. Sorry to be so blunt but it's true. Unless of course you live in "the 'hood" or something. I guess then maybe people would understand why you have a cash only policy. Otherwise, people are just gonna think you're strange.

Finally, (asside from how unprofessional it is and what it makes people wonder about you), it tells people from the start that you are not going to trust them. I don't think people like that. I know I resent it when I am punished for the mistakes others did. Others feel that way too and will resent you for thinking they are the type of people who might bounce checks.

That being said, this doesn't mean you have to take this kind of stuff lying down. If you are wise, this should be the steps you take when this happens;

1) Contact the customer. Be nice. Say, "Hi, Mr. Jones. This is Jim with Lewis Landscaping. We did a clean-up for you the other day, remember?" Well, I hate to bother you but I ran into a problem when I went to cash the check. The bank actually returned the check to me NSF. So I don't know what to do at this point. Should I re-deposit it? Are funds available now? What should I do?

You'll find that 99% of the time the clients weren't trying to screw you, they just messed up and didn't balance their check book soon enough. They will usually make it right quickly.

p.s. people are busy. If they don't call you back the same day you called them, be patient. Don't assume they are purposely trying to screw you. Chances are they are not. They may just be working a lot. Keep trying to contact them, but don't be annoying yourself. If you call and leave a message or two that aren't returned, don't leave any more. Just keep calling or stopping by at different times. You'll catch them there sooner or later.

2) If #1 isn't effective and they refuse to make up the check, you need to check their bank every day or two and verify funds to see if the check is good. Eventually, they have to deposit some more money in that account. And with most banks, you can call up and say, : I have a check that was returned to our company from one of your account holders. I just need to verify funds before I re-deposit it. " Most banks are happy to tell you Yes or No that funds are or aren't available.

3) Turn to more serious matters to resolve the debt. Some of the methods above work okay. Collection agencies work usually but cost you 40% or so. Personally, I just send them a letter telling them I'm gonna place a lein on their property if they don't pay up. Always works for me. But whatever you chose, be vigilant. Once the time comes where you've given them every chance to pay and they still refuse, do whatever you have to.

Finally, just realize that this is part of doing business. You have to deal with **** like this. And if you can't handle a $100 check being returned you REALLY won't be able to handle the **** later on in business. Because some real problems can and do come up. It's how you deal with them that matters. Fortunately, the rewards are there if you handle it all well.

SLS
09-19-2002, 03:30 AM
Well, I was going to post my opinion on this topic.......

....but Jim Lewis just said everything I was going to say. :)

Good, healthy business relationships are built on trust. If a potential client feels that you do not have faith in them to 'do the right thing' (like paying you for services rendered) then instinct will dictate that they do not trust you either.

adamc6
09-19-2002, 02:07 PM
I think your going to have trouble collecting money up front or cash only. I have bills for customers for over $2-300 per month plus they all mail me the money. Its rare that a check bounces and you will be far more ahead to take that risk in my opinion.

LAWNGODFATHER
09-19-2002, 03:08 PM
Reality check time;

Welcome to the world of business.

Cash only, have fun not working.

Bounced checks happen, luckily it has only one time to me and the customer paid all extra fees, it was the last time I let him pay me, his sister took over payments due to her request.

Nelson
09-19-2002, 08:42 PM
People,

Maybe I did not say this.......BUT She told me this will
be a one time thing.......

What I am saying is .....If I run into this scenerio again...

" One time thing again"

I will say cash only........

Regardless of the last few post.........

Please Understand it was a one time deal nothing more !!!!

So bottom line is.....I will need cash for now on for one
timers.......

I will let U guys know how it works out......

Maybe you guys will change your mind on this issue.

No $100.00 does not hurt me......But I can not let this
kind of thing happen again.....

I am No Scrub ...By Far....... I know how to run a Business..



:blob2:

CSRA Landscaping
09-19-2002, 09:04 PM
Point well missed. What Jim, Mike, Runner, SLS, etc. are telling you is that a large part of what's at stake here is your business image, not you getting your money. You read what Jim's reaction was whenever a contractor told him they needed cash or nothing - See ya! You can run into some one-time jobs that are fairly substantial ... you expect someone to pay you $1500 in cash?

LAWNGODFATHER
09-19-2002, 09:43 PM
Originally posted by CSRA Landscaping
Point well missed

How many people do you know including yourself who keep a few hundred dollars in cash at home?

A question for everyone.

I don't.

Our lovely system invented credit cards, checks, debit cards, check cashing cards, automatic withdraws, and deposits. Makes it diffacult to have cash on hand.

A come to you business that is cash only...............anyone ever heard of one? There is a pretty good reason you haven't.

I would do the same as Jim, cash only, see ya!!!!

Cash only have fun not working. This goes for the one timers also.

Cash in alot of places is usless, let's see you buy a brand spanking new car with cash. Federal law prohibits the puchace of a new car with cash. Houses are no cash also. To exchange a deed, you must use a check and turn it over to a title company.

You know why it is like this, drug dealers.

Hoosier Mower
09-19-2002, 11:05 PM
You'd be crazy not to get a police report or go to the D.A., you earned the mony so collect the money.

richard coffman
09-19-2002, 11:43 PM
even, tho i live in Happy valley(utah), i've ran into bad customers, but very few. my law is, one bad check, and it's pay up front every service, no exceptions!!they have lost my trust for a long while. those who have my trust are those who send in that check every month, as they trust I will do my work as I promised. :rolleyes:


Richard Coffman/owner

p.s. I understand that checks will be bounced, and customers will pay up after they find out, my comment above is a last resort solution i use.

JimLewis
09-20-2002, 12:08 AM
One time deal or not - doesn't matter. The point is it's a shoddy way to do business. And this is the mark of a scrub. I don't know how many marks it takes to actually become a scrub. I suppose that's arbitrary. But you won't find any well established, professional company with a cash-only policy for one time jobs.

How much do you intend to do for one-time jobs? Because we just did $25K this month so far in just one-time jobs (anywhere from $160 to $7k jobs). And I guarantee ya if I would have insisted on a cash-only policy I would have landed absolutely ZERO of these jobs.

I don't know what kind of neighborhoods you work in. But 'round here if I rolled up to someone's house to give a bid and then told them it was cash only they'd laugh me right out the door. It just isn't right.

I'm not saying to sit back and take it up the tailpipe when people stiff you. But to change your policy to cash-only for all one-time clients is rediculous. It's a good way to land a very small percentage of your bids. And if that's truly your intentions still, I am probably wasting my time even responding.

richard coffman
09-20-2002, 12:22 AM
Jim lewis,

I've read your statment and understand where you come from. yes, mabe I'm being just a bit stubborn with the whole check ordeal. I haven't had problems with getting new bids or keeping current customers with my theory. I'm taking your thoughts into consideration, and mabe will change my company policy. thanks for the insight.

Richard Coffman/owner

:angel:

John Gamba
09-20-2002, 07:18 AM
Keep Sending Them invoices With Interest. See if you can do something to them legally. In the mean time The bill get's bigger . Then when it's big enough Lean the house. It worked for Me. It took a Year And a half. They Payed a Lot More Then They where Going to Screw Me Out Of.
John

Nelson
09-20-2002, 09:00 PM
Originally posted by jimlewis
One time deal or not - doesn't matter. The point is it's a shoddy way to do business. And this is the mark of a scrub. I don't know how many marks it takes to actually become a scrub. I suppose that's arbitrary. But you won't find any well established, professional company with a cash-only policy for one time jobs.

How much do you intend to do for one-time jobs? Because we just did $25K this month so far in just one-time jobs (anywhere from $160 to $7k jobs). And I guarantee ya if I would have insisted on a cash-only policy I would have landed absolutely ZERO of these jobs.

I don't know what kind of neighborhoods you work in. But 'round here if I rolled up to someone's house to give a bid and then told them it was cash only they'd laugh me right out the door. It just isn't right.

I'm not saying to sit back and take it up the tailpipe when people stiff you. But to change your policy to cash-only for all one-time clients is rediculous. It's a good way to land a very small percentage of your bids. And if that's truly your intentions still, I am probably wasting my time even responding.

Jim I live in the hood Man...+ I am a scrub......

Dude Relax for a little & listen......Some times it takes this....

Let me eleborate again...... ONE TIME ONLY

FAR FROM BEING A SCRUB + I KNOW HOW 2 RUN A BUSINESS..

Easy on your gestures.....:gunsfirin

Lay it 2 rest...............

Grasshog
09-20-2002, 10:57 PM
Go by an tape a notice to the door . Let them know that the check has not cleared. A $ 20.00 return check charge has been added. As you feel this is a small over sight on thier part. An can understand how in todays busy world this could easly happen but it is a unlawful act in (your state name here). I do feel it is best for both parties if you could clear this matter up within 5 buisness days.

Please feel free to call me.


On the 6th day a $ 29.99 late charge will be added and we will hand this matter over to the DA

PS If you only plan on being a cash only company. Plan on not growing any either.

James

tailoredlook
09-21-2002, 01:43 PM
Take them to court. Get the orriginal fee, late charges and bank fees. If that doesn't work get a mechanics lien against them. They won't be able to get any kind of credit or sell thier house untill you are paid.