Customer problems HELP!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by schmidt78, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. chesterlawn

    chesterlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 708

    So you are saying if I cut all day and make $500 my net is $50. If you are only making a 10% profit don't assume that that is all others make.
     
  2. 205mx

    205mx LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,346

    Pretty sh!tty, huh?
     
  3. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    Dont let puny trifles get to you like that, plants get in the way, simple solution is trim them back, no charge.

    That's what you do, plants get in the way, trim them back, done.
    The customer won't say a word, some will later thank you, some won't say squat.
    But you are learning a new skill: How to trim.
    And if you do it enough times you will learn how to trim FAST.

    Or use the 21"
     
  4. dllawson

    dllawson LawnSite Member
    Posts: 172

    What you earn and what your business profits are two different things. The money left in your business after you pay your bills and pay yourself is your net profit. If you cut all day, make $500, and pay yourself $250; that does not mean your business had a 50% profit. It means you earned $250 for your labor that day.

    My point is that problem customers are not profitable, so look at the numbers another way. If you personally cut all day (8 hours) and make $500, then you would be billing $40 an hour.

    Think about what happens to your profits if one of those customers regularly complains causing you to make return visits.
    1. When you spend a second hour driving back to their property and fixing a problem, your hourly rate for that customer drops from $40 to $20.
    2. You also lose the $40 you could have billed another customer for that hour of your time.
     
  5. dllawson

    dllawson LawnSite Member
    Posts: 172

    Looks like my math is bad when I post late at night. This example is a little more accurate.

    My point is that problem customers are not profitable, so look at the numbers another way. If you personally cut all day (10 hours) and make $500, then you would be billing $50 an hour.

    Think about what happens to your profits if one of those customers regularly complains causing you to make return visits.
    1. When you spend a second hour driving back to their property and fixing a problem, your hourly rate for that customer drops from $50 to $25.
    2. You also lose the $50 you could have billed another customer for that hour of your time.
     
  6. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,891

     
  7. dllawson

    dllawson LawnSite Member
    Posts: 172

    Late night numbers never add up. Please see my second post with corrected numbers. 10 hours a day, $500 billed, $50 per hour. Sorry.

    The point is, regular return trips for a problem customer drop your hourly rate for their property and cost you the opportunity to bill another customer for that time.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  8. schmidt78

    schmidt78 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 42

    It's not the plants in the way. It's the beds. I can make the passes with my mower 55% of the time witch i can mow a lawn down the street thats 3 times the Size of their lot faster. It's not so much trimming plants back. It's trying not to get the grass clippings into their beds, they have lava rock and its not so easy to get grass out of it. I have always pleased the customer. They just keep adding flower beds to their lawn. Making it more and more frustrating. I just had a bad week with them. Well maybe 2 weeks. It's funny. They have their own mower. Their own weed eater. And the time to do it. They just don't want to do it. So I don't understand if they don't want to do it they will pay or find someone they don't know.
     
  9. mikesturf

    mikesturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 793

    I bet the customer thinks you should LOWER your prices because with all their new flower beds, they have LESS lawn to mow.:hammerhead:
     

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