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Loyalty or Lower Prices?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Wells, Feb 8, 2005.

  1. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    After reading what others are paying for Liability Insurance I decided to call around and see if I'm getting a decent rate.

    I came across a company that is willing to provide the exact amount of coverage, same deductables and everything for half the cost of my current insurance company.

    Here is the problem: My original agent is a ex-neighbor, friend and last season we maintained his yard.

    I gave my current agent (freind) from company #1 a call today to discuss why company #2 can offer me such good rates and he sorta went off the handle saying that there sould be a level of loyalty here and that if the roles were reversed he would of never called around to compare rates. He made me feel like scum for calling him on the isuue of lower rates.

    So.... should there be a level of loyalty between you and your providers when it comes to doing business or does it make more business sense to always look for the best deals around?

    My loyalty to company #1 will end up costing me $600 a year.
  2. ChadA

    ChadA LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 521

    $600 is alot of money. First of all do you give him a deal on his yard for being your neighbor/friend? And second, is he cutting you any breaks on your insurace. I think loyalty is important, but at the same time you have to look out for you and your family. I know this doesn't really answer your question, just some things to think about when making your decision.
  3. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    if you loose his lawn, then how much of that $600 will it offset???
    1/2 is a pretty steep difference.

    i can see loyalty for 10-20%, but 50%???
  4. GetSomeGOJO

    GetSomeGOJO LawnSite Member
    Posts: 47

    Friends are friends and business is business. Chances are, your friend can get you a lower rate, especially because of the competetion out there. Explain to him the fact that you keep current in industry trends and so forth and knew that others were getting a better rate. Remind him that you still WANT to do business with him because he is your friend. If he is any kind of friend at all, he'll do his best to help you, just as you do your best to give him good lawn service.
  5. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,995

    Flying off the handle is usually a way for a guy who knows he is screwing you to make you feel bad and back down.

    If he is that hard up for business, I wouldn't trust him to be around long and what kind of loyalty is that.

    my $.02
  6. LightningLawns

    LightningLawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 279

    hey precision, we are in the same area, how many accounts do you have?
  7. Wells

    Wells LawnSite Member
    from SLC UT
    Posts: 0

    As much as I like my agent I have to think "what is best for business here".
    This upcoming season I will not be maintaining his yard as he has moved away over the winter, so loosing his account isn't really a factor, it's more the friend factor.

    Would I buy a new truck from a dealer my friend owns when the dealer a block away is offering the same truck for $600 less? I'm in business to make money not throw it away.

    I wouldn't expect my clients to stay with me if I couldn't keep my prices in line with others in the industry.

    In this case Loyalty is costing my company profit..........Money that is truly just being thrown right out the door. When does this loyalty become to much?

    I think if my friend was really taking care of me I wouldn't have found his rates to be one of the highest around. Granted he isn't the one giving the actual rates (they come from the under-writer) but if should at least be shopping around for the best rate for me.
  8. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    He has moved and it sounds like you really don't have much contact with him outside of business. If that is true, then I would say it is time to make a new friend.

    Just make sure the new company isn't going to raise your rates in a year and so forth. You need to waive the quality of service before price too. Same with the truck dealer, in this case $600 (small amount on a truck) would be better spent with the dealer you know. There is just to many variables to get an answer from us, but it sounds like you feel the quality of service isn't there with your friend and that is why I would vote for the new service.

    I know I am talking in circles, but like I said only you know the variables and I am just guessing.

    Good luck!
  9. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,125

    Who is the old carrier and who is the new carrier? Maybe someone on here can help you with quality issues from the new carrier. I use Erie Insurance and can vouch for them.

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