lawncare blues

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbylawn, Apr 6, 2000.

  1. bobbylawn

    bobbylawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17

    I was awarded a commercial contract in February of this year. I was to begin cutting in April. For no apparent reason, to my knowledge, the customer called and told me he was going to cancel my services. My contract stipulates that there is a 30 day notice before cancelation period. I would like to know if the customer is still required to pay me for the month of April. The person who had the contract for the previous 6 years is probably going to get the contract back. I bidded $5 less than he did, I went through the procedure of signing all the paperwork including papers for authorization of background checks and criminal history. To my understanding the previous lawn maintenance guy did'nt have to go through the same thing. According to the customer, this was something that was just started when I was awarded the contract. As a favor to the customer because the grass needed to be cut, I came in and cut the grass for them at the end of March because the previous lawn maintenance guy did not carry out the remainder of his contract because his services were not picked up again. Has anything like this ever happened to you? If so, what did you do or what would you do.
     
  2. nlminc

    nlminc LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GA
    Posts: 1,671

    Bob, your just a good business person. Just chalk it up and move on, you are probrobly better off without that account. They did give you the run-a-round it seems. I once had an opp. like that for a condo. Same deal they agreed to the contract and backed out at the last minute for the guy that was doing a lousy job in the past. I agreed just to take care of the irrigation on the property for that season. Everytime I drove into the place the head trustee was on my back about how much I was going to charge and why I was $15.00 more per hour that the guy doing the maintenance. The guy doing the maintence used craftsman equipment, had no uniforms for the crew ( shirtless w/boxers exposed) and falling apart trucks. Needless to say I was out of there in a hurry and informed the Management Co. that I wanted nothing to do with them in the future.<br>Keep your head up. Keep your prices up and move on.<br>Chris
     
  3. yardsmith

    yardsmith LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 627

    yeah it's going around; ressidential & commercial. I woulddn't do that to someone, but people have no problem doing it to us.<br>I lost 2 resturant chain stores this year due to corporate a**wipes looking for bottom dollar this year-I kept them spotless all year last year, & quoted same price for this year. Corp. didn't even ask the local managers who they liked or recommended. I've lost way more than I wanted to already this year for nothing other than lowest bid. I hope they do a lousy job so I can get them back; 'course corp. probably won't listen to local mgr.s anyways if they did complain.<p>----------<br>Smitty ô¿ô<br>
     
  4. nlminc

    nlminc LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GA
    Posts: 1,671

    I lost a res. customer tonight. She called to tell me that my work and service were great, but had to find someone more affordable. I had been taking care of her lawn for 6-7 years, kissed her butt to please her. This year, I've been increasing my prices across the board by 5-25% on lawn service and only one leaves for a lower price, I have to be pleased. A few years ago I would have been upset to lose a customer, but now I understand that losing a customer isn't always a bad thing. She's giving me the chance to replace her with a more profitable account.<p>Chris
     
  5. Let me take a guess Smitty they were Taco<br>Bells. The taco bells in my area look<br>like $hit. <p>One would think that since the lawn and<br>landscape is the first thing many people notice they would want to put their best foot<br>forward.<p>But this is not the case with MANY forutne<br>1000 compaines. You see this companies are<br>now run by bean counters (accountants)which<br>have no concept of marketing. The main goal<br>is to produce a profit at ANY cost.
     
  6. Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 163

    You know, I can't figure it out, some people in this forum talk about commercial accounts as the only way to go and others talk about residential. My experience is that the commercial people are just as bad as the residential, as a matter of fact I'm pretty happy with my residentials which make up 95% of my business. I can't think of one customer that is difficult(knock on wood). I don't know maybe it's how you pick and chose em'.
     
  7. bobby wrote:<p>&gt;The person who had the contract for the previous 6 years is probably going to get the contract back. I bidded $5 less than he did, <p>A few weeks ago a big multi national company<br>responded to a direct mail it sent.<br>It was a 40-50 acre site with about 15 acres of turf.<p>Once you have been in this biz for a while you learn how to ask the right questions.<p>I asked the man a simple question. Why did<br>you contact me? Are you happy with the present contractor? He said that the present contractor has had this job for<br>10 years and his boss told him to get other<br>quotes=he was just shopping around and was<br>just going to use my quote to &quot;squeeze&quot; the<br>present contractor.<p>Since he had waited until late march to <br>contact me and wanted a quote in a few days<br>will completely vague specs. I just said I<br>could not meet his deadline and would<br>contact him angain in November.<p>all this guy wanted was for someone to USE<br>to lower the pricing of the present contractor.<p>You should have realized from the start that<br>if someone or some company would drop an<br>existing vendor for $5 they were a bunch<br>of real scumbags.
     
  8. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,183

    STONE, <p>IT'S FUNNY YOU SHOULD MAKE THAT COMMENT ABOUT THE TOXIC SMELLS LOOKING LIKE CRAP! I RECENTLY TALKED WITH A FORMER EMPLOYEE OF MINE WHO WENT TO WORK WITH ANOTHER LAWN MAINT. CO. THAT HAS A CONTRACT WITH SEVERAL OF THE &quot;TOXIC SMELLS&quot; IN MY AREA. HE SAID THEY WORKED THE ROUTE THE OTHER DAY AND DIDN'T SPEND MORE THAN 15 MIN. AT EACH ONE AND DID A LOUSY JOB. I HAVE WITNESSED THIS FIRST HAND BY LOOKING AT THEIR WORK IN MY OWN TOWN AND WONDER HOW THEY CAN GET AWAY WITH IT, IT WAS BAD. HE SAID THE OWNER TOLD HIM TO LEAVE THE CHEWED UP PAPER ON THE GROUND AND GET IN THE TRUCK! MY FORMER LET HIM KNOW THAT THE GUY HE USED TO WORK WITH WOULD HAVE NEVER LET HIM GET AWAY WITH THAT. MUST BE A TOXIC THING!<p>HOMER
     
  9. Keith

    Keith LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,977

    Ditto here on the Taco B's :)<p>PS. Lawrence, I haven't got the pictures of the heavy duty Kohler air filter developed yet, but I haven't forgot. I need a digital camera!
     
  10. bobbylawn

    bobbylawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17

    You guys are great.I really appreciate your advice, for you guys are battle tested. Mr Stone you are the greatest ! keep on doing what your doing man.
     

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