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I can't stand it when this happens

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DFW Area Landscaper, May 3, 2005.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

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

    Happened last spring. Happened again just now. I don't know how to make the problem go away.

    Customer calls. Says they want to sign up for service because the guy they were using for lawn care just didn't show up this spring and his phone is diconnected. They sign up for our service. Then, as soon as the other guy shows up, we are dumped.

    "Has the service been ok?"

    "Yes, your guys do a fantastic job. It's just that we are very loyal to our guy. He does a fantastic job too. We've used him for years and he's so darn cheap."

    1.) We answered the call when they needed someone.
    2.) The guy they are loyal to did not.

    I didn't try to sell her on our dependability. I am following justmowit's lead of the no hassle cancellation policy.

    But it really does bother me that she is going to patronize the guy who didn't care enough about his business to bother with crossing the border in time to reclaim all his mowing accounts.

    Some slob just crosses the border at some point in the spring and because "he's so darn cheap" he gets all his customers back?

    Guys, if I didn't answer the phone until late April or early May, how many accounts should I be able to keep?

    I am thinking of extending the 6 cut minimum to 8. I figure if they'll commit to 6 cuts, why wouldn't they commit to 8?

    DFW Area Landscaper
  2. kc2006

    kc2006 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,442

    I've wondered about stuff like this also. All these contracts I see have 2 week notice, well thats not really a contract then, thats just saying that your the guy cutting unless they find someone cheaper then they're stuck with 2 more mowings and your gone. I'm trying to find a contract that would tie them in for the full year unless something is really wrong then with writen explination they can get out of the contract. I like the idea of 6 or 8 minimum cuts.

    Could you tell me how you go about doing this minimum cut set up or contract?
  3. DFW Area Landscaper

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

    I just started the 6 cut minimum commitment this spring. Justmowit is the only other LCO I know of who does this. It works great, but my thought is, why limit it to 6 cuts? I mean no one is arguing that 6 cuts is too long. If they'll take 6 as the minimum, why wouldn't they take 8 just as easily? As long as it's not a year, they seem to be ok with it.

    For me, it's a lot easier to enforce, because I have their credit card on file. If they cancel early, we charge the one time rate for all the cuts we've already done, which is $15 extra per cut. If I had to send them a bill for the extra $15, $30, $45...whatever...I'm certain I'd never collect it.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  4. Shawns Lawns

    Shawns Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 638

    DFW what happens at the end of the 6th cut do they then have to sign up for another 6 cuts? :waving:
  5. DFW Area Landscaper

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

    After the sixth cut, they can cancel at any time with no obligation.

    DFW Area Landscaper
  6. Shawns Lawns

    Shawns Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 638

    DFW do you have a contract for the 6 cuts or is it just an agreement? Also how could these customers be loyal to someone who did not even take care of his own customer. I like the 6 min cuts though. :waving:
  7. jbell113

    jbell113 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 654

    I have in my contract that states........should contractor fail to execute contract with promptness and diligence or fail inthe performance of any of its terms, conditions and agreement contained herein client may at its option , with a 30 day written notice to contractor , exercise right to terminate contract
  8. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 492

    Most of the people I've signed up so far are pre-paying for each month. It's another part of the sale to convince them that this is easiest. I figure (I could be wrong) that if the other guy shows up, they will tell him "I'm sorry, but when you didn't show up, I got someone else and now I'm paid for the month. Can you come back in June?" By June, I'm betting he'll have forgotten to show up again.

    I could be wrong. VERY wrong.
  9. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,995

    I do that too and a few have told me exactly that. The old guy shows back up after his bing is over and they tell him politely, " I went with someone else and am already paid up until such and such a date." And they never hear from him again.

    I think 8 is getting greedy. Especially with the EOW people. That is 4 months.
  10. lwcmattlifter

    lwcmattlifter LawnSite Senior Member
    from NC
    Posts: 859

    I have a $75 penalty for early contract termination in the first 60 days. After 60 it's 3 week notice. No one has complained about it. If they did it's a big red flag anyway

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