How do you prove you were there??

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by LawnScapers of Dayton, Nov 2, 2012.

  1. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,979

    I have my guys write our in time and the out time for work performed with the exception of mowing. I also use RealTrack GPS on my maintenance truck. I can back up my billable info with GPS reports. RealTrack is only $18 a month. If you run even just one crew like myself you crazy not to be paying only 59 cents a day for GPS.

    I had one a-hole client try to tell me we had not mowed his lawn last year. I mentioned GPS and he had the balls to suggest my guys were just sitting in front of his house. I just happened to talk to a customer across the street that week and she told me as we talked that she could see my guys mowing the client in questions yard. When I emailed the customer that his neighbor saw us mowing his yard and that she could confirm the mowing was performed his reply was that he thought my feedback was bizarre.

    The only thing bizarre was I was able to counter everything the guy said and I took the wind out of the SOB's sails in a big way. A month later he was no longer a customer. Good riddance.
     
  2. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    The guy likely lost his job or for some other reason could not afford to pay. Human nature and pride is a strange thing.
     
  3. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,979

    This client had purchased his home from a previous customer of mine who was pretty frugal. The house is about a $800K house. I think this guy had decided I was too expensive for his tight azz and was trying to make up a reason to let me go. He had given me some other crap about the way I detail the bills. He and his wife pretty much tagged teamed me with complaints one day after about six months of service without a single complaint.

    I saw the guy who picked up the yard and he was a push mower and a pickup company.
     
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    Even worse.
     
  5. rreyn1812

    rreyn1812 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 444

    Personally, I've never had a customer question whether I've done the work I billed for, and that includes time they are on vacation or at their other home. If they did, then I would explain to them that I am a professional and I perform the work I bill for. If they doubt my word then they should be there when I show up to check my work, or have someone else do it for them.

    One of the marks of a professional is that they show up on time and perform the work agreed on in the manner agreed to. I can pretty much guarantee that I show up within 15 minutes of the scheduled time each and every week/bi-weekly/etc. barring weather events, and if that happens I call and let them know that I will be there as soon as possible, but if they have taken the time to know me, then they know that anyway. Still, it's a basic courtesy. My business is built on quality work and maintaining good relationships with my customers. I, too, keep a log which is filed with my business expenses each year, otherwise it is in the truck with me for the current year.
     
  6. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    99 times out of a 100 it is they simply do not want to pay for some reason or another.
     
  7. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,979

    Everyone runs into an a-hole client at some point and you will too. If you've been lucky thus far your your number is due to come up soon. I've had a customer who was great and actually prepaid $800 in advance for work lose her job and turn into a total beech. She lost her home and had to file for bankruptcy. She ended up owing be $800 but all I got was $300.
     
  8. rreyn1812

    rreyn1812 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 444

    Not saying I've never lost money due to non-payment. Over the years, I've only had 2 customers not pay me for a total of about $200. Of course, they are no longer customers. However, my response was that I've never had a customer question whether I've actually done the work. If a customer doesn't trust me, and I have never given them a reason not to, then I don't want or need their business.
     
  9. 123hotdog

    123hotdog LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 482

    I know I will get a ton of backlash from people on this site for what I'm about to say but here goes. There is no way I wish to take a picture before and after every time I go to a property. In any business, its all about relationships. When a customer asks, " where you really here? " that becomes an integrity issue with me. Now I am an owner operator and always on every property. I explain to them that yes we were there. The typical customer that does this is the same one that tries to get there lawn mowed less often and tries to haggle price. Not all money is good money. Once I learned that my blood pressure went down and I slept an hour more each night.
     

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