1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Does anybody charge an Environmental Fee?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mngrassguy, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,167

    My sister in another city hired an LCO to mow her lawn. They quoted her over the Internet $40.00/cut. It took them 2 weeks to get out and her bill was for $121.61. Sound a little high to me and I cut grass!!!

    Mow tall grass $ 103.40
    Fuel Surcharge $ 7.24
    Environmental Fee $3.99
    Sales Tax $ 6.98
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    I would tell them to bite it. They can't charge like that unless she agreed to that price. that is THEIR problem if they didn't get out there.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Honestly speaking, how tall was the f'n grass and did your sister INSIST on a quote over the phone?
    The only reason I mention this is because we know why that doesn't work, someone here might have been looking
    for a bargain price and I hate to say it but if that was the case then she about got what she deserved too because
    I hate that schitt lol

    On the other hand, mofo asks me to quote them a price on the phone and I have done did it this way,
    that is when I pulled up I saw the job it was a PITA nightmare I wouldn't be able to stick to the quoted price regardless,
    it did piss me off royal the guy had pulled this crap on me but I also got right back in my truck and kept on driving,
    so in terms of a loser you have to cut your losses short and leave it at that.

    If they quoted $40 for the grass cut, and that was the agreement, then to the best of my knowledge the only thing
    they are allowed to do is charge sales tax in those states that require it.

    What you speak of, and there have been cases here, is quite simply against the law.
    We can not, while running a business, quote one price and charge another.

    What your sister needs to do is call these folks and ask them what the deal is, explain that she agreed to pay the $40
    and that if it did turn out to be more that they should have called her to discuss this first, and whatever comes of
    it you tell these folks that you had an agreement and like it or not but you be a man of your word and don't be
    backstabbing folks like this because it just ain't right...
    As for paying it, that I couldn't say, I don't know the situation.

    But good luck, hope it works out for y'all, some kind of way.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2008
  4. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,167

    Thanks Topsites, Runner, I'll pass on your opinion and post more info when I get their response.
  5. ALC-GregH

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

    I can see them raising the price some as it IS a estimate. At the same time, I can't see them raising the price by what, almost 75%? I don't think a business can go over 15% of the original estimate. I could be wrong.
  6. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,167

    Thanks ALC-GregH, I agree.

    Here is a copy of their explaination:

    "Substantially rising fuel prices and environmental compliance-related costs are something we cannot fully control. The Environmental fee is meant to help cover these ever increasing environmental compliance-related federal, state, and local governmental fees and costs.

    Fuel is one of our greatest expenses, gasoline and oil is what our company operates on. From driving trucks and trailers to your job site, to nearly every service we provide, we are dependent on gasoline and subject to increasing fuel prices. Our Fuel Surcharge is meant to help us cover a portion of our increased fuel costs.

    The additional charges are only per month.

    Thank You,"
  7. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    286% to be precise. :)

    I didn't include the sales tax since they have no control over that.

    People pull all kinds of scams. This is just another one.
  8. mississippiturf

    mississippiturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 674

    This kind of schit is what gives the legitimate guys in this business a bad name. I've screwed up on some bids before, but I took the hit. Anyone who quotes one thing over the phone (dumb idea) and then charges another AFTER the job is done needs their azz kicked!! If they exercised any type of professionalism they would have re-quoted the job before they started the work. Makes my blood boil!!
  9. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,167

    So far, I don't hear of anyone charging an environmental fee. I don't like fuel surcharges but I think one more fee is WAY out of line. JMO I think their explanation is even more bogus.

    "ever increasing environmental compliance-related federal, state, and local governmental fees and costs." What kind of BS is that?
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I know what that is, I'll get to that but basically it's a load of crap they could get in serious trouble for.
    You see, they're trying to play it off as IF it's a federally mandated fee
    (such as those which the electric company might charge), but it's not.

    The electric company (phone co. too) has these charges, and there really is nothing
    they can do about it because the government did put those regulations in effect and
    thus they are not just forced but entitled to pass it on to us.
    Not only that but the regulations themselves address the telco's and energy co's directly,
    in no uncertain ways and in very direct terms these regulations pertain to them, and them only.
    In ways it's still a bit of a marketing trick when they speak of "29.99 telephone service"
    and then stick around $15 worth of those fees in there, but the fees really are put
    upon them by the government and we don't have to like it but that's how it is.

    But in landscaping there is no such thing, although they did stop JUST short of saying it was a
    mandatory regulated thing, had they said that they would've been in a world of deep poopoo.

    No argument that there do exist laws that affect our business, but these laws were never put
    into effect just for the landscaping industry sector, thus it does not pertain directly to us, or only to us.

    Now then quite simply put they're sticking it to you, it ain't right, and the finely circumvented
    heavily thought about cute play on words isn't helping my sense of humor either.
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2008

Share This Page