Discuss your difficult customers here...

Discussion in 'Seal Coating Forum' started by Loooogie, Jun 2, 2009.

  1. Loooogie

    Loooogie LawnSite Senior Member
    from YORK
    Posts: 295

    I think this thread like may be good entertainment and maybe we can learn to deal with difficult customers better.

    A lady called me and wanted her driveway done, she said it was 10 by 60 feet long, I gave here a estimate over the phone based on the info she gave me.

    Anyway, she insisted she wanted the "actual price" so I went out to meaure it today, and the driveway is 150 feet long not 60. So when I gave her the new price she freaked out, I thought she was joking at first but she was dead serious and insisted I give her the orignial price. :laugh:

    Anyway when she saw that I was holding my ground she kicked my off her property and called me a crook, etc... :waving:

    I really do not know how people like this function in day to day life. I can't figure out if she had a really bad day or if she is really cheap or really crazy???
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2009
  2. EWS

    EWS LawnSite Member
    Posts: 203

    so if it was 600 sq feet you should still have a minimum of say 200.00 in which you could have done a 1500 sq ft driveway for 200.00 im curious on what you priced her... I know what you mean about pita customers but you should never bid a job without seeing it, ho can you without seeing how much prep.... etc..
     
  3. StratfordSealing

    StratfordSealing LawnSite Member
    Posts: 29

    hehehe, thats why I dont give estimates over the phone because I swear whatever mesurement they give you, go x2 with it. That or they ask if you do crack filling and you get there and the driveway looks like a smashed up windshield and they expect everycrack filled for same price as a seal even tho it would cost you $300 in crack filler. The best thing is to keep your cool and just walk away, usually get 1 like that every year.
     
  4. Loooogie

    Loooogie LawnSite Senior Member
    from YORK
    Posts: 295

    Min $200 charge? EWS I wish but that would never fly up here, I am sure my fellow canucks would back me up on that one.

    If the customer just want a seal I give them a range based on the info they provided to me. I explain to the customer what that price includes and if their driveway is really dirty or bigger they will have to pay for the extra work.

    I am not sure I would say I "bid" on the job, I gave a rough estimate based on the info provided to me, which is normal up here. Also I take the time and talk to the customers so I know the condition of the drive.

    Some people just are looking to fight...
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2009
  5. Loooogie

    Loooogie LawnSite Senior Member
    from YORK
    Posts: 295

    Wow, I have not had that much bad luck. 95% of the estimates fall within the price range I give the customer. And I only have to go to the customers once. Traffic in this city is crazy and if I had to go to every house twice my prices will go up much higher.


    I had one guy last year, he was 6 foot 10. He said he measured the driveway and it was 50 feet long, it was more that 150 feet long. When I asked him how he measured it, he said he used his feet. I told him look at the size of your feet and we had a good laugh and he paid the extra.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2009
  6. StratfordSealing

    StratfordSealing LawnSite Member
    Posts: 29

    Yeah im in a smaller town so for me its just less of a headache to go drive by and price it, its not that I get alot of bad luck its just that I hate being off with my price and having to tell that person its gonna be more but yes I usually get 1-2 every year that are just real jerks.
     
  7. Loooogie

    Loooogie LawnSite Senior Member
    from YORK
    Posts: 295

    Maybe I gotta find a small town with alot of huge driveways... a place where the square footage of the driveways are bigger than the square footage of houses.

    I don't think you are having bad luck, I deal with alot of cookie cutter driveways that are all pretty much all he same so it easy to quote them. I don't mind losing a few bucks by givining prices over the phone but because I save my time and fuel and the customer is happy.
     
  8. Loooogie

    Loooogie LawnSite Senior Member
    from YORK
    Posts: 295

    Customer is listing his house and really wanted his driveway sealed ASAP, he called me late yesterday so I booked him this morning.

    I arrived at a customers house today to do his driveway... I had called before I came as he requested and when I got there the jerk was power washing his driveway!!! I am sure he waited for me to call and then picked up his powerwasher.

    When I see this I just told him I will come back tomorrow and we will seal it, and he agreed. He left a message a couple hours later that was jibberish... I mean I could not understand what the hell he was talking about but he wanted to hold off on the seal for next week.

    I am 100% sure he never wanted his driveway done because when I booked him in he kept asking me if I was sure it was not going to rain.

    I went outside my area and woke up early to accomidate this guy.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2009

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