Equal Monthly Payments

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mtdman, Feb 18, 2004.

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Should I do Seven or Eight months of payments?

  1. Seven

    8 vote(s)
    36.4%
  2. Eight

    14 vote(s)
    63.6%
  1. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    So I'm moving to get my customers on a season rate with equal monthly payments. 12 payments over the course of the year is outta the question for me, not a choice. I don't want to deal with tracking down payments during the winter months when I'm not working, I don't want to get stiffed by people who will pay through the season and not during the winter, and it's just generally not something I want to do. My season runs pretty much from mid April to mid November.

    The question is, should I do 7 payments from May through November, or 8 from May through December. Or does it matter?
     
  2. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,547

    I do 12 payments because we work year round here. Every week in summer, every other in "winter". stick with 7. Christmas comes before your 8th payment that will be due in Dec. Besides, what are you going to do about it if they pay in jan or feb? take them to court for one month late fee? 7 sounds good to me. My worst months for late payments are dec and jan.
     
  3. Premo Services

    Premo Services LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,516

    I have been doing 10 monthly payments. They start March 1st and end December 1st.Works out well for me andf my like it also.
    More are going to get the agreement and do the monthly payments.Yea they will like it too...:D
     
  4. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Posts: 1,557

    I do 12 months so i dont have to work in the winter time much.
     
  5. bastalker

    bastalker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 965

    I only bill my commercials on an 8 month plan from march 31 - october 31. My residentials I just bill monthly, because they usually want odds an ends done thru the season, and it wouldn't be feasible to have a set monthly payment.
     
  6. Wesley's Lawn

    Wesley's Lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 211

    I do 12 months its nice cause i know what im getting per month and dont have to rely on mother nature for snow.
     
  7. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    Yeah, as I said, 12 months is not an option for me. I frankly don't trust my people to pay on time, or to not stiff me for $$ owed after I'm done working. I have no problem getting through the winter on the money I make through the year.

    I am going to push this as my preferred billing plan for residentials. How hard can it be to add billing for extra services you perform through the season, as you do them? I gave my people a chance to add stuff in up front before the season started.
     
  8. dkeisala

    dkeisala LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 911

    You know what - if you can't trust your customers, how do you expect them the trust you?

    I understand your thinking. I wrestled with being able to trust clients to pay througout the winter. But I run a business and my bills don't stop coming in during the winter months so I still need a cash flow to keep the business running flush. And I don't want to have to go to the extra work to make sure I have enough to make it through the winter months. I have enough to worry about. But in all my years of business, I have rarely had to deal with customers not paying their bills or trying to cancel on me once December rolls around. And when they do, it is usually customers that I wish would cancel anyhow.

    An even cash flow is so much easier to deal with than trying to tend to a 12 month budget on 7 months worth of payments. But hey, if you are up to the task, more power to you.
     
  9. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    You know, I really didn't want to argue 12 months, which is why I didn't make it an option on the poll. I understand that some people do it that way, I'm not going to. It's not better or worse in general, 12 months doesn't fit my needs.

    Invariably I have stragglers every year that owe me money for the last month and pay late. I don't want to deal with that with this plan. And why invite trouble when I don't need to? I've never had a problem budgeting or making enough money to get through the winter in the past. I don't need to have money coming in all year, this plan is preferrable to me than 12 months.
     
  10. Phishook

    Phishook LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,143

    What about April? If you could get away with it, April-Nov.
    The smaller their payment, the better.
     

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