Getting Contracts Signed

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Expert Lawns, Jan 5, 2004.

  1. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,660

    How do you guys get your contracts to and from customers? Do you mail it to them, have them sign it and return it, then you send them a copy? It would be hard to meet with each and every customer to go over it with them. So what is the best method and what is most beneficial to the customer. (many like to sit down and go over it. many don't like to bother with it, too time consuming) thanks
     
  2. Green Finger

    Green Finger LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 839

    First You explain your contract over the phone. Then you have options.

    1 Leave it in the door, ie. mail box. (Leave two copies)
    2 Fax it to them at work or home.
    3 Or schedule an personal estimate.

    Your professional customers who are acustomed to having a lawn service will not have a problem with the first two. It's the first time homeowners you have to walk them through.
     
  3. LawnPerfect

    LawnPerfect LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 318

    What I do is when the customer calls to set up a date for first mowing, (they already know what the cost will be from the door hanger) I let them know then that I will require that a "Service Agreement" will have to be signed before I make my second cut. I leave it with them at the first cutting then pick it up at the second. I always call the day before the second cut to remind them to sign and leave the agreement.
     
  4. Expert Lawns

    Expert Lawns LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,660

    good ideas. I'm using contracts for the first time this year. I don't think my current customers will have a problem with Service Agreements. They are all satisfied with our work and we know each other pretty much on a personal basis. I show up. I do the work. They pay me. Never had any big problems. When I send out my spring letters, I will just notify them that "in order to better service you this year, we have organized a Service Agreement. This will outline our services and payment options."
     
  5. LawnPerfect

    LawnPerfect LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 318


    I will just notify them that "in order to better service you this year, we have organized a Service Agreement. This will outline our services and payment options


    Very good way to put it. I use that exact line when explaining why we have "service agreements". I avoid the word contract at all costs. Now with some people, I emphasize that the agreement gives me permission to go on to and perform work on their property. Some people like that reason for the agreements better than the rest.
     
  6. alpine692003

    alpine692003 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,502

    Thats cool. I was going to ask the same question on how to lock down a customer on an agreement.

    I was going to do the 1st cut, ask them if they like it. If they say it's a good job, I will then present them an agreement that I made up.

    Then I will talk to them about getting them on this agreement before we proceed to the 2nd cut.

    What do you guys do if they say, I'm not interested in getting into an agreement?

    Do you guys still do the 2nd cut and continue on, or do you just say well, sorry and forget about that customer?
     
  7. TJLC

    TJLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    I will tell potential customers up front that I ONLY do monthly agreements. If they disagree, I very politely move on. Most I have found seem to want the monthly thing. Good luck.
     
  8. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    I had very terrible success in getting new customers to sign up for service without a face to face meeting.

    Basically, my close ratio looks something like this:

    Without a face to face meeting: Less than 5%
    With a face to face meeting: Over 60%

    As for customers having a chance to read every line of your contract, forget about it. They just want you to show them where to sign. Less than 10% of my customers actually read the document before signing it.

    Later,
    DFW Area Landscaper
     
  9. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    I have customers that I've never met in person, nor talked to more than a few times. Some are my best customers. Kinda weird they'd be so trusting with their homes without knowing/meeting me, though.

    :D
     
  10. alpine692003

    alpine692003 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,502

    Thanks for the advice guys..
     

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