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i will not pay the bill, till the fence is fixed

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbygedd, May 25, 2005.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    new customer as of march of this year. her payments are equal each month, and due on the 15th of each month. she called , a bit irate, about damage done to her fence. i could not imagine what it was, but i went right over the next morning. when i got there, i looked, and looked, but couldn't see anything wrong. she comes at me like a linebacker, "there, there, it's right there." as she is pointing to 2 small chips, perhaps the size of a dime. it is a white plastic fence, the lower part is very thin, and the wacker chipped it in 2 places. her complaint, i felt, was frivilous, yet, the damage was done, and i told her i'd repair it, or replace the entire section, as soon as i got a chance. well, about a week went by, and her next bill was sent. she called, "i recieved your bill, and i will not pay it, until my fence is fixed." ha ha ha, yea, ok. i called her back, and said, "mrs, i came right over when you called about the damage. i don't consider those tiny little chips an emergency situation, i will repair it, as soon as i get a chance, but in the meantime, your maint bill must be paid, on time." who is right, and who is wrong?
  2. Toy2

    Toy2 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,924

    You are right, but just in case I would call a fence company to go look at it....she will think you are busting your a$$ to get it fixed....I know around here, fence guys are 10 days behind on work.....and its not because of the weather...they are just swamped....you can tell the fence guy not to discuss anything with here...just agree.....you will get your money....because she is new, she's just tripping.....wear your "wife beater" t-shirt...the one with knife holes......she will freak!!!!LOL ;)
  3. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,157

    Or you could tell her to get it fixed and just knock that much off the next bill....I could see if the problems was 4-5 months old and she decided to not pay until repaired...but if it happend a week or two ago...
    gotta be careful with those PVC fences and the string trimmer. Wait until its several years old and the UV rays have made it brittle.... better buy some extra sections.
  4. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    Your probably right but I would probably react the same way she is. I wouldn't pay someone for doing maintenance on my truck if they broke something. Fix it and get your money. Instead of running home for your 930am coffee after 4 lawns spend that hour repairing what you damaged.
  5. oldturf

    oldturf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 221

    Since the popularity of vinyl fences, and the probability of damage that goes with them, I have started putting an exclusionary clause in my contracts and point it out to the customers. If they want to put up those ---- things, then they can be responsible for them.
  6. ztoro

    ztoro LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 732

    If I were Her I wouldnt pay the bill until it was fixed....

    I think you would feel the same if you wer in her shoes.... If a guy comes to fix something at my house and breaks something else in the meantime.. The last thing I would do is pay the bill(until it was fixed)..... Once they get there bill paid they are gone...

    Its a little different because you are around more frequently, but she may think once she pays you'll drop her and never come around.......

    Based on her petty claims you may do better by dropping her..... If she is going to inspect the fence after each service you better do they same to make sure you are the one causing the chips....
  7. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,157

    Good call....I guess the other thing you could do would be to spray a 6" wide swath of roundup and not even get close to the fence with a weedy...But that looks like sh&t
  8. Up North

    Up North LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MN
    Posts: 1,063

    Bobby, you know dang well what would happen if the shoe was on the other foot. If this was your fence there's NO way in heck you'd pay the bill until the fence was fixed, and I'm sure you'd throw in a few adjectives as well... :D

  9. Grass Masters

    Grass Masters LawnSite Member
    from NC
    Posts: 85

    NO Question She is right

    If I would have been in your shoes I would not expect to be paid for the job till I fixed it.

    You agreed to fix it otherwise you would be right but you told her you would fix it and a week went by and you havent made any attempt to let her know what is going on BUT YOU did have time to send her a bill

    Geesh she may get a shovel after you be carefule and FIX the womans fence
  10. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,020

    Bobby, Are you sure that YOUR company did the damage? Tell her that you you can't be positive that you did the damage, so she should pay the bill or find somebody else to cut her grass and fix her fence. You will fix the fence when you have the time. Give her an amount of time that she can expect to have her fence fixed by (which would also give her time to pay her bill). Try turning this negative into a positive with her impression of you as a stand-up guy who fixed a fence even though he wasn't sure that he damaged it.

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