Got a good one for ya!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by CALVISI, Apr 30, 2007.

  1. CALVISI

    CALVISI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 20

    I have a customer with nine rental properties I maintain. He writes me an email today asking if i can skip this week's cut because he overseeded the properties this weekend. These are biweekly cuts, this would push it to three weeks. Don't want to loose these guys, all nine are within 1/2 mile of each other with many on the same street. What to do? :confused:
     
  2. Nathan Robinson

    Nathan Robinson LawnSite Senior Member
    from 47712
    Posts: 317

    ask him for a small increase because of the time it takes you. If he frowns leave clumps and this will cause a moisture and heat burier killing of some new seedlings. If he values his propert enough to overseed I am sure he will value spending a little extra money on your service.
     
  3. rockandroller

    rockandroller LawnSite Member
    Posts: 121

    Sounds frustrating, but think about how long it might take to acquire another cash cow like that. I would bite the bullet and maybe charge a bit more on the next cut since it has been three weeks during the high growth season.
     
  4. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,403

    Good lessons to learn here.

    1. It's easy come, easy go when it comes to scoring a single "cash cow" customer with lots of business. With the easy signup of 9 properties comes more risk if they drop you. Keep that in mind. I prefer being more diversified and leave the volume customers to the big boys. You're pretty much his prison b**ch if you can't walk away from the revenue and he figures that out.

    2. With a higher volume job ($500/mo or more) you should get a written contract so that you don't have a gaping hole in your schedule mid season. The odds of 9 seperate homeowners canceling at once is minimal.

    3. Preemptive communication. People who don't do practical things for a living (RE agents, investors, etc) have no clue. You have to baby them through it.

    It's a good idea to give customers a policy sheet that covers this kind of situation and any others that come up. Lawns get seeded. You know that. You need to make sure they know to tell you BEFOREHAND so you can coordinate the mowing with the seeding. And you need to let them know the consequences of not telling you, so you can point to that disclosure if they balk at paying extra. It'd be hard to argue with that.

    Besides it being really long after 3 weeks, it probably should have been mowed extra low before seeding. And where I am the seed isn't going to do much if it's put down into a forest of tall grass.

    4. Mowing rental props is probably not the best long term way to build a customer base, and is fraught with hassles anyway. Unless you're getting top dollar, consider picking up solid residential customers instead.
     
  5. CALVISI

    CALVISI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 20

    very good points...thanks
     

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