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  #1  
Old 02-14-2014, 05:26 PM
Exact Rototilling's Avatar
Exact Rototilling Exact Rototilling is online now
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Anyone push a peformance promise or standard for fertilization accounts...?

What I'm getting at is I'm willing risk a performance standard of some sort but ONLY if the client properly waters and commits to a higher mowing height [cool season turf]Ö

I honestly want nothing to do with scalp mowed grass in my area. I'm trying to ditch clients who insist on low unhealthy mowing. I'm trying to enforce a minimum performance standard.

Your thoughts on this....good or bad....?
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Old 02-14-2014, 05:30 PM
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phasthound phasthound is offline
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What? You want people to be accountable for their actions?
If you're willing to risk losing some clients and concentrate on those who are willing to take part in having a great lawn, I think it's a great idea.
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Old 02-14-2014, 06:07 PM
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I believe it can be done but it's in the presentation. And yes the lawns I'm control of absolutely rock.

I want more of those and less of the bean counter chiseler type accounts.

The grease the skids I'm throwing in extras...
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Old 02-14-2014, 06:17 PM
M&L M&L is online now
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If the area supports it, run with it. Irrigation is standard here, and the growing season is about 11 months haha. With the houses being right on top of each other makes the lawn sizes fairly small (1Kish front yards and 2K backs) and chemical cost low. Avearge slow release granular fert for one of my properties is around 3 dollars and takes roughly 9 minutes. I keep good notes so I'm not wasting time measuring every 6 weeks.

When I decided I only wanted nice properties on my route, I took care of the fertilizer out of pocket for my best clients, and charged a small fee here and there. Basically broke even on product because I hardley charged for it and lost money on time, but it has helped to get my reputation way up and set my lawns apart.

About a year ago, I had a local print shop make me custom invoices, but thay also mad me a "Recommended service" form. Its been a game changer...... I don't have to call 3248542 people through out the week to ask about up sells and leaking sprinkler valves. Nope. Just leave a hand writen note on the form that says what I recommened in the comming weeks and what I estimate the cost to be. They either text me the ok or leave a note with the check. They don't get used for 5$ shrub touch ups, my clienst are all full service as far as mowing, shrubs and weed control, but the advised 25$ fert and "X" charge for Pre-M always sells.

Dumping clients and taking a pay cut because of it is the sacrifice. When all of the neighborhoods best looking lawns are yours, you don't get nearly as dusty, the pay goes up and you feel better about your work, you'll know it was totally worth it.
Those are the clients that pay on time and seem to always go for "add on" services.

IDK how many clients you have currently, but If you can swing it I'd say drop the worst few yards. I've had crap yards keep people from using me in the past. Its hard to get un associated from them. If its an air filter per mow type of place, dump em.
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Last edited by M&L; 02-14-2014 at 06:21 PM.
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Old 02-14-2014, 07:41 PM
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RigglePLC RigglePLC is offline
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Enforce a minimum performance standard? YES! Good idea.
I would suggest if a customer has any crabgrass--even one plant--or any dandelion--even one plant--then he should get a full refund or credit for the weed or crabgrass control treatment.

Naturally you have to do a better job than most companies.
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Old 02-15-2014, 12:21 AM
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Nate'sLawnCare Nate'sLawnCare is offline
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I attended a seminar a few weeks ago and the presenter from NC State University showed results from a study about fescue cutting height and crabgrass growth. The fescue cut at 4 inches was healthy and had very little crabgrass versus the grass cut at 2 inches, which was full of crabgrass. It really demonstrated how the cutting height impacted not just the fescue health, but infiltration of undesirable plants. Sounds like customers that insist on cutting cool season turf too low are just shooting themselves in the foot, and in more ways than one.
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Old 02-15-2014, 12:42 AM
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Exact Rototilling Exact Rototilling is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nate'sLawnCare View Post
I attended a seminar a few weeks ago and the presenter from NC State University showed results from a study about fescue cutting height and crabgrass growth. The fescue cut at 4 inches was healthy and had very little crabgrass versus the grass cut at 2 inches, which was full of crabgrass. It really demonstrated how the cutting height impacted not just the fescue health, but infiltration of undesirable plants. Sounds like customers that insist on cutting cool season turf too low are just shooting themselves in the foot, and in more ways than one.
Even cool season turf mowed at 3" make a huge difference for crab grass and weeds. My standard mowing height is 3.25" and I really resist going below 2.75". Sadly the most reliable payers will often want the turf down well below 2.5". I know very well I may risk alienating my older client base by that height standard but that is a risk I'm willing to take. I may actually back peddle on the program just a tad and charge more for turf mowed at 2.75".

Like I've said before my grass is mowed at 4.25"/4.5" and it looks great. But many mowers won't even cut that high. Walkers stop at 4.0" And many homeowner mowers are lower than that at max height. 21" mowers struggle to deliver a decent cut at the higher settings. My Toro SR4 super recycler leaves a hideous cut up around that height. This is where the larger multi blade WB can and do leave a tighter flatter cut.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:45 AM
CTPTURF CTPTURF is offline
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About four years ago, I became tired of dealing with clients who blamed all their lawn problems on our company, when it was usually bad cultural practices on their part (or their landscape maintenance company).

So, I reworked my leave-behind paperwork to include just about everything that should be happening on their end such as height of cut, sharp blades, proper iirigation, etc..

If we see someone not adhering to certain aspects of those guidelines, we circle the appropriate verbage and put it on them.

Now, there is a lot less of those complaints, and when it does happen I refer them back to the leave-behind paperwork. The ball is now in their court.
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Old 02-17-2014, 12:27 PM
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Exact Rototilling Exact Rototilling is online now
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The more I have pondered this concept the more I agree with this approach. A personal trainer can make key suggestions and reasons why but the trainer can't guarantee squat if the client insists on their way. Just need to format my leave behind paperwork.


Quote:
Originally Posted by CTPTURF View Post
About four years ago, I became tired of dealing with clients who blamed all their lawn problems on our company, when it was usually bad cultural practices on their part (or their landscape maintenance company).

So, I reworked my leave-behind paperwork to include just about everything that should be happening on their end such as height of cut, sharp blades, proper iirigation, etc..

If we see someone not adhering to certain aspects of those guidelines, we circle the appropriate verbage and put it on them.

Now, there is a lot less of those complaints, and when it does happen I refer them back to the leave-behind paperwork. The ball is now in their court.
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