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View Full Version : it's 2 am, WHERE'S MY FIFTY BUCKS!!!


bobbygedd
08-13-2004, 04:20 PM
what's the nuttiest thing you've ever done to collect a debt? mine is pretty much a tie between the 3 hour "customer drove me to the police station", and the 2am call. you see, it happened like this:
i'm cutting this ladies lawn, and she says could i please call her friend, he lives on the other side of town, he needs me. ok, so i call, he wants it cut one time only. i go over, it's a tiny yard, up to my knees. i call his office, tell him $50 beans. he says okay, i get his home #, and tell him where to send the check. i mow. a week goes by, no check. i call, leave messege. i call his office, leave messege. i do this daily for a week, he don't call back. i wait a couple weeks, repeat process. he never calls me back. somehow, i forgot about it. just completely forgot. it was 8 MONTHS LATER, and 2 am, i was at my friends house drinking beers, i was looking through my wallet for something, and this little piece of paper falls out with this guys phone # on it. AND IT HIT ME, this bum never paid his bill. so i call, and he answeres, "hello?" and i say loudly, " I THINK 8 MONTHS IS LONG ENOUGH FOR YOU TO SAVE UP $50 BUCKS TO PAY ME!!!" he goes, " who, who, who is this?" i say, " IT'S THE IDIOT WHO CUT YOUR LAWN 8 MONTHS AGO, AND I'M COMMING OVER TO GET MY MONEY, RIGHT NOW!!!" he goes, oh, oh my, hey, let me mail you a check. " i say, " NOPE, NOT A SHOT IN HELL, I'LL BE THERE IN 10 MINUTES, CLICK!!!!!" i show up, and before i could knock on the door, i see there's a check taped to it. for $75. how far will you go to collect $50?

travis strecker
08-13-2004, 04:34 PM
man u tell some good stories u need to find some decent customers

Gravely_Man
08-13-2004, 04:34 PM
Now that Bobby is what I call giving the customer the gentle touch. Glad you got the money you were owed.


Gravely_Man

MJLsLawnCareNmoreLLC
08-13-2004, 04:38 PM
LMAO. Im supprised the check wasnt in a cops hand for the customers protection.

NNJLandman
08-13-2004, 04:42 PM
How many of you tell your customers "why can't you be more like bobbygedd's customers, you suck!" hahaha, or "I wonder who bobby is chasing down, huh ill hear about it this evening on lawnsite." Good stories bobby keep em coming, the tru cutting machine you are.

Jeff

MMLawn
08-13-2004, 04:51 PM
I had no idea they had trailer parks in NJ!:blob3:

Trevors Lawn Care
08-13-2004, 05:08 PM
off topic

His governor is GAY!!1


HAHA ...ROTFLMFAO

lqmustang
08-13-2004, 08:55 PM
I went door knocking the day after Christmas last year on a couple of delinquents. Figured they should be home, and did get one of the 2 paid. I'll have to remember the 2am call some Saturday night after tossing a few too many. lol

bayfish
08-13-2004, 09:26 PM
Around here, thats a good way to get shot.

bobbygedd
08-13-2004, 09:30 PM
how bayfish, by stiffing the lawnguy?

odin
08-13-2004, 09:37 PM
If i look at it from the businessowner point of view ..i wouldnt blame somebody collecting at two am.


From the homeowners point of view there a proper time to collect ....and people collecting at 2am dont fly ......they get to meet either mister 9mm baretta .......or two good buddy's of mine mister left 20 inch and mister right 20inch aka somebody gets strangled .


So it a damned if i do or damned if i dont situation lol

HOOLIE
08-13-2004, 09:42 PM
One of my regular customers referred me to her daughter, who lived in the same neighborhood as her. She wanted this small area behind her backyard cut down. Charged her $40. When I went to the door to collect, she said "I just realized my husband has the checkbook with him, would it be alright to mail it to you?" So I said sure, no problemo.

So of course, I never get the check. I call, I bill, multiple times to no avail. Then I think, maybe I should mention this to her mother. But my wife thought it was a bad idea.

A few months later, I'm mowing her mother's lawn, and mom comes out to say hi. We're exchanging small talk, when I say "Does your daughter still live around the corner?" "Yes she does, why?" So I told her why. Now I tell you, the mother is a STERN LOOKING Muslim woman. Her check is always the first in my mailbox each month. She just raised her eyebrows and said "Oh, I see"

2 days later the daughter's check was in my mailbox.

J&R
08-13-2004, 10:06 PM
I invested in a 40.00 magnetic sign for my truck. It says PAS DUE BILL COLLECTIONS and park outside there house.

lawnman_scott
08-13-2004, 10:12 PM
I had one that owed me money and told her i could stop by the morning of the 25th to get it. It was money owed from about august, and this was december. Another I asked if I could stop by work to get it that friday (never throw out a work number for a customer).

Big Lew
08-13-2004, 10:19 PM
Hey Bobby I'm a new guy to this site....I must say that after reading all your postings that I've come to realize that living in PA is a bit toooo close to you! haha
Just kidding.....you sure have some interesting stories....you ever leave this site it's going to be pretty dull.....
by the way...should you ever visit the Edmunds site for cars..there is a guy who goes by the name of Andrewtran that posts in the Honda Odyssey forum...You two are just alike!
><> Big Lew

Fareway Lawncare
08-13-2004, 10:34 PM
How Many Beers did you Drink before Driving to his House ?!?!?

bobbygedd
08-13-2004, 10:39 PM
maybe like, 12. give or take 8

Turf Medic
08-13-2004, 11:02 PM
Originally posted by odin
If i look at it from the businessowner point of view ..i wouldnt blame somebody collecting at two am.




Originally posted by J&R
I invested in a 40.00 magnetic sign for my truck. It says PAS DUE BILL COLLECTIONS and park outside there house.


By Federal Law either one of these practices can land your butt in a sling. Amazes me what people can get away with. If you own a collection agency you are required by law to block the caller ID to protect the delinquent person from embarrassment if someone else should see the caller ID display. That is also why the letters that get sent out have personal and confidential printed on them, to protect the collection agency from lawsuit. As a business owner there are federal guideline you must follow when collecting delinquent debts.

EastProLawn
08-13-2004, 11:14 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
" IT'S THE IDIOT WHO CUT YOUR LAWN 8 MONTHS AGO, AND I'M COMING OVER TO GET MY MONEY, RIGHT NOW!!!" he goes, oh, oh my, hey, let me mail you a check. " i say, " NOPE, NOT A SHOT IN HELL, I'LL BE THERE IN 10 MINUTES, CLICK!!!!!" LMAO, you are the bomb......:D

bayfish
08-13-2004, 11:15 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
how bayfish, by stiffing the lawnguy?

No.

By calling at 2 a.m. drunk, 8 months after the fact saying "I want my Fih..Fih...Fifty dollars and I'm coming over."

Letting something go for 8 months and then decieding to resolve it at 2 a.m after a few shots of courage sounds like an episode of COPS waiting to happen. If you can't do it professionally, let it go.

bobbygedd
08-13-2004, 11:37 PM
fact is, i did it. what's "professionally?" i seen 2 cops chase a thug down, tackle him, chain him up, and throw him in a car. that's "professional?" o, the uniform, i see. you do it your way i'll do it mine

bobbygedd
08-13-2004, 11:54 PM
oh, but "that's a good way to get shot", is professional? ok, so, it is your statement that shooting people is professional, collecting your money is not.

olderthandirt
08-14-2004, 12:17 AM
woke the whole family at 6am on a sunday morning becuase the guy decided to go golfing with the check book right before I finished and his wife did not know where the box of checks were to take one out of order. Told them I would be back tomorrow, just not what time it would be, and damn they were all home at 6am and had the check book lol

Mac

geogunn
08-14-2004, 12:31 AM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
i seen 2 cops chase a thug down, tackle him, chain him up, and throw him in a car.

did they beat him up too?

most generally when the cops have to chase a thug down, they take an asskicking with them. (respects to chris rock!)

GEO

HOOLIE
08-14-2004, 12:51 AM
At my old job, we had this homeless guy working for us. Well, he DID have a home, it was his car. And he looked AND smelled like he'd been living in a car for the past 3 years.

Anyway, he couldn't mow, trim, mulch, or trim hedges worth a sh**. But...my boss discovered he was a darn good bill collector. Just have him drop by the offending customers house around dinnertime, all stinky and disheveled. "My boss sent me here to collect our payment..." I guess they were afraid he'd park his car/house out in front of theirs until we got our money. Most of them paid very promptly.

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 12:58 AM
You went to his home drunk at 2am eight months later but you couldn't get there on a week day evening in between that time?

He did you wrong but what you did was help give a bad name to the industry.

You did all that for $50?

He would certainly have a case against you and you would most certainly end up losing quite more than a measly $50 in court.

olderthandirt
08-14-2004, 01:54 AM
Originally posted by Ken Kesey
You went to his home drunk at 2am eight months later but you couldn't get there on a week day evening in between that time?

He did you wrong but what you did was help give a bad name to the industry.

You did all that for $50?

He would certainly have a case against you and you would most certainly end up losing quite more than a measly $50 in court.

Come on you gotta be kidding, # 1 where did it say he was drunk? #2 give a bad name to the industry? read the post everyones had trouble collecting money from someone #3 What diff does the amount make? Would you feel this would be OK if the amount was $100? $1000 $10,000 # 4 I'm sure Bobby did not have a written contract with the guy so the fair collection laws would not pertain so whats the guy gonna sue for ? Not paying his bill? lmao
:angry:

Mac

LawnScapers of Dayton
08-14-2004, 07:14 AM
50% tip.....not bad.

Derek

bobbygedd
08-14-2004, 07:48 AM
yea i know mac, these guys are hilarious, i also know for a fact they get beat out of money on a daily basis. i have a 100% success rate on collections. don't question my methods, the results are what counts. like i posted in another thread, lawnboys usually have self esteem issues, that's why it's easy to get over on them. THAT, is bad for the industry. fact is, after dealing with some of you guys, a deadbeat client would go out and try to rip off the next guy without even a thought. after dealing with me, i garentee they stop and think before they try it again.

odin
08-14-2004, 09:13 AM
very rarely even get cilents who even are late ..very few try to beat me ..Over the years ive got pretty good judgeing people and weed en dead beats out.

Quit even giveing estimates to hindu's who are almost 100 percent deadbeat and late payors .

On the rare ocassion somebody did try to beat me ...small amounts i go though the small claims ...large amounts for 10 % my big black friend on the west side of chicago does my collections....and if i want extras...say like fingers he throws em in free .

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 10:30 AM
What he did was illegal. He could be charged with harassment, trespassing, and aggravation.

He didn't have a contract because he's:

A) Not Professional

B) Not Smart

C) Probably Not Even Licensed

D) All Of The Above



My guess is “D”

Bobby says he has 100% rate on collections. I’d have to say if you waited eight months to collect $50 at 2am after a night of drinking your “success” rate me be a little less than 100%.

As for lawn boys getting beat out of money on a daily basis then that is their own stupidity.

Real business owners that are professional do not have these problems. We meet, close the deal, do the work and get paid. Period. (Late payers are another story).

It’s funny listening to you grunts get burned and then huff and puff about it when it’s due to your own negligence.

Green Care
08-14-2004, 11:44 AM
I will let the 50 go, it will cost me more in other ways.

geogunn
08-14-2004, 12:57 PM
ken kersey--you got a real nice way of saying things.

GEO

Evan528
08-14-2004, 01:18 PM
Originally posted by odin


Quit even giveing estimates to hindu's who are almost 100 percent deadbeat and late payors .


DITTO!!!

bobbygedd
08-14-2004, 01:27 PM
ken, to put it simple, you are full of crap. woulda, coulda, shoulda. bottom line, i get paid. how would you have handled it ken, please tell me? how is demanding my money illegal?

bayfish
08-14-2004, 02:06 PM
Originally posted by bobbygedd
oh, but "that's a good way to get shot", is professional? ok, so, it is your statement that shooting people is professional, collecting your money is not.

Bobby, the getting shot part was intended to be a joke. However unprofessional acts cause unprofessional responses. Fact is, it took you 12 beers and 8 months to deceide to do this and you could have set yourself up for a huge liability. What if he refused to pay, or would'nt answer the door. What would come next? Property damage or break down the door? It worked out for you this time, but what about next time. There are better ways man.

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 02:15 PM
How would I have handled it?

First of all I do no work without a written contract. That was your first mistake. There should have been a document stating how much the service was for, when the service was to be completed, and when the payment was due. Also, what would happen if he didn’t pay you on time.

Second, I would not have forgotten about it for two weeks.

Third, I would not have forgotten about it for eight months.

Demanding money is not illegal. Your actions were illegal and you're lucky this guy didn't sue you, even though it was his fault for not paying you like he should have. The judge would have awarded the to the plaintiff.

I would have sent him a bill every week one letter more strongly worded than the last to finally inform him that his account would be turned over to a collection agency and that it would affect his credit. That would have been an attention getter.

geogunn
08-14-2004, 03:05 PM
I am behind bob on this one.

Ida gone with him on the collection.

with the extra $25 he coudda bought us both more beer.

GEO :drinkup:

bobbygedd
08-14-2004, 03:16 PM
ken, it was only 50 bucks. the profit on a $50 service is only about $30-$35. using your method, you would have nickled and dimed yourself right out of any profit. i don't like working for free. second, i too am a firm believer in a written contract. sometimes though they are just not practical. it was on my way that day, and very convenient to stop by and do the work, instead of going by another day while he was home, taking my time to go over the contract with him, then doing the work. what if you are at a customers house cutting the lawn. they come out and say , "ken, can you cut those two limbs?" you happen to have a saw and ladder on your truck. do you stop what you are doing, draw up a contract, and stick it in thier face and make them sign it before sawing off the 2 limbs? sometimes ken the contract is impractical. now, as far as the guys who claim to never have collection problems.....i know guys in this business, and other businesses. everyone experiences collection problems. human beings are dishonest by nature, that's all there is to it. if you say you don't have collection problems then you are either lying, or you are so damn cheap they can't wait to pay you. either way, i'm glad on judgement day it will be the lord deciding my fate, and not you guys.

drsogr
08-14-2004, 05:33 PM
Wow this is hilarious. Although I don't agree with Bobby, in my sober state. I have done much crappier things in my drunken state. If I was drunk I would have done the exact same thing. When you are drunk you don't think, well how will this affect the way my company looks, or maybe this guy will have a gun waiting for me when I get there. Point of the matter is, he got the money. If this guy had a problem with a bill collector stopping by at 2 in the morning, then maybe he should pay his bills on time. More than enough times I have found myself short on cash and so on. But I always find ways to pay my bills on time.

drsogr
08-14-2004, 05:35 PM
Has anyone tried renting one of those huge lights that have the generator built on to them and tried pointing it at the house? Obviously it would probably cost you more than $50 to rent, but that would get them to pay real quick. And a whole heck of a lot of fun. You would wake the whole family up with that machine!

olderthandirt
08-14-2004, 06:00 PM
Originally posted by Ken Kesey
How would I have handled it?

First of all I do no work without a written contract. That was your first mistake. There should have been a document stating how much the service was for, when the service was to be completed, and when the payment was due. Also, what would happen if he didn’t pay you on time.

Second, I would not have forgotten about it for two weeks.

Third, I would not have forgotten about it for eight months.

Demanding money is not illegal. Your actions were illegal and you're lucky this guy didn't sue you, even though it was his fault for not paying you like he should have. The judge would have awarded the to the plaintiff.

I would have sent him a bill every week one letter more strongly worded than the last to finally inform him that his account would be turned over to a collection agency and that it would affect his credit. That would have been an attention getter.

You would have sent a bill every week for how many wks? its costing you money at this point to send the bills and not having your money. And then you would have made the threat of turning it over to a collection agency, That is a violation of the fair collection act and a crimminal offense [ get him Geo] plus collections won't waste there time with a fifty dollar bill and if you could find one there gonna charge you at least 1/3 probably 1/2 for such a small amount so the best your gonna end up with is $30 bucks from a fifty dollar bill and you think thats worth your trouble? The attention getter you mention only works for honest people that pay there bills the ones that don't have no credit to ruin.

Mac

bobbygedd
08-14-2004, 07:22 PM
thanks mac. i am greatful for smart guys like you.

crawdad
08-14-2004, 08:27 PM
Originally posted by Turf Medic
By Federal Law either one of these practices can land your butt in a sling. Amazes me what people can get away with. If you own a collection agency you are required by law to block the caller ID to protect the delinquent person from embarrassment if someone else should see the caller ID display. That is also why the letters that get sent out have personal and confidential printed on them, to protect the collection agency from lawsuit. As a business owner there are federal guideline you must follow when collecting delinquent debts.

If the "delinquent person" (deadbeat is easier to spell) doesn't want to be embarrassed, they should pay the debts they agreed to pay, whether they signed a contract or not.
Knock on the door when they have company, they'll pay with a smile. I also have a perfect payment record, without written contracts.
Contracts have loop-holes.
I don't.
Crawdad
payup

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 09:22 PM
Yeah, it's real big bucks to send a letter to someone once a week. Talk about breaking the bank! What would that be? $1.48 for a month?

Blockbuster Video will turn you over to a collection agency for far less than fifty bucks.

Since when is a criminal offence to inform someone they could be turned over to a collection agency?

Please do inform us where you get this information.

Maybe they do it different down in the holler.

I would consider anyone who works without a contract a scrub.

harley29710
08-14-2004, 09:54 PM
Ken,
Down here in these hollers a mans word is better than any written contract. I deal with alot of elderly people and they like the fact that there word is enough for me.
I see from checking your profile you are ashamed of where you're from. That must be a real bummer.

Also, is that personal experience you are referring to with Blockbuster?

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 10:37 PM
You can think someone's word is better than a contract all you want.

Fact is, it doesn't take a genius to mow a yard. Any monkey can do that.

I suppose in that respect if you live in a real small town where you run into all your relatives and customers in one day, then I guess I see your point. I'm from a small town like that. You couldn't go to the grocery store without seeing half of the people you grew up with.

On the flip side, if you're in business and not in a small town, you better have a contract. I do commercial and residential landscaping and one of the reasons I have a contract is not just a matter of trust, but to make sure everybody is on the same page as to what is to be done on the job.

It also protects my family, my customers and me.

How many times have you heard about the scrub that did an installation without a contract and there was a mistake or miscommunication in what was to be done? (On this board it seems like every week). Then before you know it, Mr. and Mrs. cusomer are unhappy and the scrub is out an amount of money.

Boo hoo.

Should have had a contract.

No, I'm not ashamed of where I'm from, just don't want to share it with the WWW for a variety of reasons.

If you're so confident “Harley”, why don't you share your real name and your address and phone number?

Maybe I'll give you a call or stop by.

As for the BBV, no it wasn't a personal experience. However, that was a pathetic attempt to be snide.

captken
08-14-2004, 10:53 PM
hmm bobby, what will a 50 buy you?:p

need a quick pick me up for those long mowin' days? and nites?...

I'm usually in bed by 10pm...

olderthandirt
08-14-2004, 11:03 PM
Originally posted by Ken Kesey
Yeah, it's real big bucks to send a letter to someone once a week. Talk about breaking the bank! What would that be? $1.48 for a month?

Blockbuster Video will turn you over to a collection agency for far less than fifty bucks.

Since when is a criminal offence to inform someone they could be turned over to a collection agency?

Please do inform us where you get this information.

Maybe they do it different down in the holler.

I would consider anyone who works without a contract a scrub.

"Talk about breaking the bank! What would that be? $1.48 for a month?" No you have the cost of your secretary time or your own, the book keeping to keep it open, etc. Telling someone you will turn them over to collections is considered a threat! which is against the law. You are not even in the same league as Block buster and I'll have to take your word on what they would or would not do. But I can guarentee you that they can afford any loss that the collection co. charges
Since you seem to know so little about what you talk about I won't waste anymore of my time with you, being the great business man that you are a quick call to your attorney that you must have on retainers will answer your question of where I got my information on the fair collection act. If by chance you don't have one on retainer I'm sure you can Google up the answer. As far as the holler goes I can tell you know about geograpy as much as everything else you claim to know, and if you don't know what I'm talking about look at my profile and then your own


Mac

Ken Kesey
08-14-2004, 11:16 PM
Mr. Dirt, I looked up the fair collection act and saw nothing about telling someone that you may send them to a collection agency being unlawful.

If you do not pay your phone or electric bill they will tell you they will send you to a collection agency. Are they breaking the law?

I bet you cannot find information to back up your statement. If I'm in the wrong I'd like you to point it out and I will stand corrected.

Let me put it to you this way, I heard "Over yonder in the holler" about every other day where I'm from. I'm also a geography buff.

What's your point?

txlawnking
08-14-2004, 11:22 PM
While I might not have taken the situation Bobby presented to his extemes ( I don't drink, and I agree you can get shot real quick in these Parts... ) I totally agree with Bobby... ( see Bobby, I do NOT hate you.. ) I would be (and have been) on a dead beat like stink on crap.... The Last SLOW payer ( not even delinquent ) I had, after many phone calls, and his wormy hide having his daughter answer the door, I finally staked out his house in the PM and waited for him to come home.... Nothing like the expression on his face when I confronted him before he even made it inside..... Got my $65.. IMMEDIEATLY:cool:

gvandora
08-15-2004, 12:02 AM
I was watching a move from Spain called "Haz con migo lo que tu quieras." aka "Kill me Tender." This guy ran a debt collection agency where he would have a guy dressed in a bunny suit follow the debtor wherever they went. If that failed, they would wake up all the debtor's neighbors in the middle of the night and annouce he was a dead beat. Seemed to work pretty well.

geogunn
08-15-2004, 01:23 AM
I kinda regret this thread has gone too serious in a way.

I have made a few collections myself over the years.....some people might not be surprised to know.

my accounts receivable is only short two accounts for a total of $80 after 8 years. not bad if I say so myself after the write off.

but it isn't my lawn biz I am talking about.

I am known to my friends as someone they can turn to when they are in need.

it seems quite often I am kind of in a position where I can use my "negotiation skills" with people for a mutual agreeable resolution of the issues.

and that is the way I think it ought to work.

people talking to people.... it sure beats writing allot of letters!

and as for bob's innovative approach to his collection, I dunno if he has broken any laws.

ken kersey has yet to explain that one to my satisfaction.

GEO

bobbygedd
08-15-2004, 07:29 AM
geo, i just knew sooner or later you would start to see things my way. now that the jelly has cleared, i'm sure your life will be much more fullfilling. you know though that's funny thinking you have about collecting, and thinking your "way with words" is the tool that is getting the job done. it's the uniform, or mention of being a cop, let's be realistic. my friend is a cop also. he has a lawn service, and he has people months behind. he says, "bob you know, your collection skills are a bit primitive, there is a more diplomatic way to do it." yea well i guess there is, he always gets paid too, he shows up in uniform, with a loaded weapon in clear veiw.