argument of the day

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbygedd, Aug 6, 2004.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    customer purchased a fert program. our standard programs DO NOT INCLUDE treatment of nutsedge. this is considered an "extra" which is available, if needed, for an extra fee. ok, so he purchased a standard fert program. he called today complaining about "this tall light green weed" growning in patches in the lawn. i told him what it is, and for an extra fee i would spray it. he flipped, he said a weed is a weed, and i should spray it. i explained that standard herbicides can not be used to treat the nutsedge, we need to use something different, and the cost would be additional. he said forget it, i said fine. i was there cutting the nieghbors lawn today, and he came over moaning about how i should "be a standup guy" and take care of it. now moderators, this is not a pesticide thread, but more of a customer service thread. if you don't have to move it, don't. how do the pros handle this?
     
  2. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    My question is, did the customer KNOW that the standard treatment did not include the nutsedge and did you explain that the weeds in his yard were nutsedge? If you told him that he needed nutsedge treatment and he declined then you're off the hook, but you still have a customer that is hosed so what are you going to do? He's probably bad mouthing you all over the neighborhood, i suggest putting a hit on him. You are in NJ afterall. (JK)
     
  3. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Senior Moderator
    Posts: 6,073

    Where on the 2004 Fertilization Agreement does it say that nutsedge is extra?
    Do you really believe the customer understands
    1 Post-emergence/Weed Control May 15 - 30
    He sees Weed Control that's all he sees.
    Was nutsedge given as example in the comment/add on line as going to be extra? How is this man really supposed to know what nutsedge is? He just considers it a weed, and probably thinks his May 15-30 treatment was supposed to take care of it.
     
  4. rob1325

    rob1325 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 685

    My contracts always say broadleaf weeds only & Specialty treatments such as Nutsedge, Crabgrass, & etc are extra.
     
  5. SouthernFried

    SouthernFried LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 273

    What everyone else said...

    If your contract or agreement said "treat weeds," then customers think thats all weeds. If you specifically did mention specific weeds not being part of the weed treatment...then you are in the right here.

    If it didn't, treat the nutsedge once for free...explaining to your customer that it was your mistake for being not specific...then add that all other treatments of this particlar weed is extra in the future.

    And add it all up to learning costs...I think it's line 33bb on the self employment subsidiary document IRS addendum. Under deductions for screwups.
     
  6. Gr grass n Hi tides

    Gr grass n Hi tides LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    One thing I do when I have a new client or an old one that wants new service is walk the property with them. Take em right out there, bend down & point out what's what. This is chickweed, this is crabgrass, etc., etc. Just 10-15 minutes to save me hrs. or headaches later. I mean, I'm out there spending time on an estimate anyway so I want it all squared away. I want an understanding when I leave. A lot of folks don't have an idea what's going on & need a little polite education. If someone asks a question I don't know, I tell them I don't know, get the answer & call them back.

    Same with seeding. Had a client recently that I put some Bermuda seed down for. Yeah, I know yuck another Bermuda lawn. Oh well. Anyway, I told her when it comes up it will be tiny and purple. I failed to tell her the seed was very small & she asked about it when she got the bill "hey I didn't see any seed out there......I thought you said Bermuda likes to lay around on the surface." I pointed out the fert & she was fine with it and all I'm just saying...........
     
  7. Turfdude

    Turfdude LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,900

    This is all well and good, but remember not all weeds are present all times of the year. For example, chickweed is a "winter annual". It is easily killed w/ traditional 3-way weed killers (or by temps above 80 degrees - hence the lack of its presence in the summer). Crabgrass is a summer annual and gets killed off by the first good frost. If you were in our area in the spring going over a lawn w/ a prospective client, you would in NOOOOO way be able to know if that prospective client had a sedge problem unless you had physically seen it on their property in a previous year. As long as BG has listed braodleaf weeds and excluded sedges, etc... then he has covered all of the bases.

    BTW, he could always try an app of MSAA which is much less than manage and he'd come out smelling like a rose!
     
  8. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,656

    Treat the guys nutsedge and move on with life. :D
     
  9. txlawnking

    txlawnking LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,905

    Bobby, if the contract is spelled out in plain english, then I agree that you are in the right. If not, I'd say that is dishonest...
     
  10. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    jodi, as you can plainly see, it says , "weed control." i didn't mention nutsedge, i didn't mention locusts, i didn't mention repairing the lawn if a helicopter crashed on it, i didn't mention the neighbors dog peeing on it. i did however mention weed control. now, read further into the contract, it has there the "notification" of application dates. i applied the products, at the manufacturers reccomended rates, at the pre arranged application date. now, read further, it clearly says, "this is our standard program, which is sufficient to maintain MOST LAWNS, it does not include the use of fungicides, if fungicides are needed, or ANY ADDITIONAL TREATMENTS ARE NEEDED, they are available FOR AN ADDITIONAL FEE!!!
     

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