Customer Complaint after Spring Cleanup Yesterday

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by spronk1, Mar 31, 2010.

  1. spronk1

    spronk1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 56

    So, Yesterday was the first day back out starting spring cleanups and lawn cleanup. My typical spring cleanup includes Blowout of hardscapes, raking of lawn(i use a JRCO Tine Rake) and mowing/bagging of all the debris.

    I pull into the first neigborhood and I am all excited b/c I have 8 of them lined up on the same block, 4 of which are all neighbors so I could do 4 backyards all at once. I lined up these 4 with 1 person. The lady called me about wanting her yard dethatched and also her neighbors. I went out there about 2 weeks ago to look at the lawn and advised her that dethatching with a power rake was not necessary as there was minimal thatch buildup and told her I can do it cheaper by just raking with the JRCO rake to loosen up the matted down grass. Snow mold was very prevalant on these properties. Everything matted down like it had tarps onthe lawn all winter. So she agreed to the JRCO raking and cleanup and talked to the other neighbor and all agreed to the service. So I pull in, spent about 4 hours total in that neighborhood with all 8 properties. I then get a phone call from one of them complaining that there is still alot of dead grass on the lawn and he could have done a better job hand raking. he then asked if I had even done any work and picked up any clippings b/c there was still dead clippings on the lawn. I explained that no mower will get 100% of the clippings off the ground but that did not satisfy him. Out of 8 properties, he is the only complaint. The rest have all told me they were pleased with the service.

    I use a Toro Midmount 52". Now I do have the gator blades on to help break down the clippings. I guess if needed I could put some High lift blades back on to help get more clippings picked up but then I would just have to dump twice as often. But even then it will not pick up 100% of the clippings

    I have attached some pics with the amount of grass I pulled up just from the 4 neighbors in a row, including the complainers lot. I even emailed these pics to the complainer. The rest of the clippings are in the back of my truck. This is a good reason to take before and after pics of each job. I failed at taking before pics of the lawn. error on my part

    I am a little frustrated at this point and just looking to vent. I have never had a customer complain to me after doing a spring cleanup.

    FYI< IT FELT GREAT TO GET BACK OUT THERE. Wind was blowing 20-25 MPH, dust flying everywhere. Got dirty as heck but was worth it. Getting some revenue flowing again is great.

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  2. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,142

    A lot of people think dormant rye grass is thatch.
     
  3. blk90s13

    blk90s13 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,452

    Sounds like he is getting ready for a way out
     
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,654

    The key question is, if there's still a lot of thatch and the customer asked to have it dethatched...

    As for the customer who doesn't complain, 9 out of 10 customers who are unhappy with a service
    or product never say a word, they just go on their way and don't come back.

    Oh yeah, I can do it cheaper too, matter of fact I can do it for free.
    How that comes across, maybe that was your mistake but it doesn't matter.

    The customer wanted the yard dethatched, now if there's still a lot of thatch left...
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2010
  5. Raymond S.

    Raymond S. LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 979

    All I can say is you need a dump insert...
     
  6. spronk1

    spronk1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 56

    I would love to have a dump insert. Just cant afford one at the moment.

    I did some more cleanups today and looking back I think I can see why the homeowner had some complaints. I lowered my deck down today to 2.5" and it did a way better job of pickup. Most properties I have been at have little to no growth and have been very dry and dusty. We need rain in a bad way to give this grass a jump start. the temps are here just not the moisture.

    Hind sight is always 20/20 .
     
  7. unit28

    unit28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,557

    I'm still waiting on a truck so I'm jelous.
    But go back again.
     
  8. zak406

    zak406 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,519

    If that is the case maybe you should go over the complaining customers one more time.... Sounds like that would be a nice neigborhood to keep happy.
     
  9. LR3

    LR3 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 722

    Go back and hand rake it. It comes with the territory, especially if you take pride in your work. Don't disagree or argue. That's one in 8 in the same neighborhood. Word of mouth works both ways, you don't need anyone mother*$&@#_% you:nono:. It won't take too long to do and regardless if you make it look better or not, he will at least see that you did your best to do so.
     
  10. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 7,053

    You obviously didn't do the job as well as you THOUGHT you did. Go back and do it right and let the customer know that you want them to be happy.
     

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