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Old 03-08-2006, 05:58 PM
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JS Landscaping JS Landscaping is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Orange County NY
Posts: 186
Sub contractor questions

I recently started a lot clearing job in which we were to clearn 2 acres of trees for expansion of someones back yard. I contacted my friend who has a 14" capacity Bandit chipper, to ask if he wanted to work for me doing all the chipping. We agreed on $120.00 an hour, which seemed really high. An hour into chipping his turbo on the chipper blew, therefore rendering the chipper with little power to chip anything bigger then 2". Basically only half of the work was accomplished due to the failure of the chipper. Now he wants 1200 dollars for that day, even tho his machine didnt do as much work as it should have. I find this to be unfair and it seems like he is trying to rip me off. It would be like going and cutting half a lawn then breaking a spindle and not finishing the rest but still charging full rate. Does this seem right? I should have learned a while ago that never to mix friends with business, but I guess being a nice guy again always ends up bitting me in the ass. Need your guys opionon here.

Also just found out that half of the driveways i sub out to him he only plowed once, but yet said he plowed twice. I think its time to fire him.....what do you guys think....

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Old 03-08-2006, 07:28 PM
down size down size is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: indiana
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I would talk to him about why you hired him (the 14 inch chipper) tell him it could only do half the work so you need to adjust his pay and try to come to fair price for both of you. (I personaly would have said something as soon as it broke but thats me) As far as the snow plowing i'd say SEE YA!!!!!!
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Old 03-08-2006, 07:53 PM
gammon landscaping gammon landscaping is offline
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just send him a check for 500 and see if he calls you on it
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Old 03-08-2006, 08:05 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: O'Fallon, Mo.
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thats why you dont mix business with friends
Turf Equipment Salesman at Heavy Duty Equipment
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Old 03-08-2006, 08:36 PM
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SOMM SOMM is offline
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Eastern Missouri, zone 6
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If no written sub's contract, it's to your advantage if he files suit on a verbal agreement.

In either event you need to impress upon him that jurors or small-claims judges highly consider "reasonable" expenses, such as if relative to the if he rented a chipper of half the capacity of his chipper (sounds like 8-10hp instead of 25+hp) and added 1/2 the hourly rate.

If the job got done, regardless to how it got done, matters alot.
Chalk everything else up to experience, JS.
Are you sure you are charging enough to incl. eqpt.maint./rental/lease/replacement, ins., licens'g, marktg., mat'ls., payroll, legal, permits, postage, customer retention, safety eqpt., taxes, telephony and uniformed work clothes into what you do everyday to last you the next 10 years ?
Ted Nugent: "God, Guns and Rock & Roll"; "The 5 Boxes of Freedom": Soap, Ballot, Witness, Jury, Cartridges Citizens, Jurors, Voters, Volunteers.
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Old 03-09-2006, 12:21 PM
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JS Landscaping JS Landscaping is offline
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Location: Orange County NY
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Thanks for the help guys. I think ive learned my lesson not to mix friends with business, it never seems to work out. I had origonally planned to rent the same chipper for my company to use on this job, but I figured id be the nice guy and give my friend some business since he was hurting for money. Guess thats my biggest mistake right there. As for working for me again I have told him that he will not be plowing as a sub for the rest of the season or for me ever again, due to him trying to take advantage of my company and my clients. Im just hoping we dont have any more snow events, even tho I have already filled his spot with another driver and truck. I want this landscape season to start rolling again! Thanks again guys.

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