My mower is "too fast"

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by MDLawnman, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. MDLawnman

    MDLawnman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 229

    I have a new customer - an older gentleman - asked me to mow his yard. He didn't ask for a price, he wanted me to mow it. He gave me detailed instructions on how he wanted it done. No big deal, I've dealt with people like that before. I figure it's easier if I know what they want before I begin.

    He's watching me mow on my ZTR & he asked me to bag the grass for the first mowing only. He keeps stopping me while I'm working & saying that I am going too fast. A 1/2 acre lot, it takes me one hour & five minutes to cut at his preferred speed. My helper passed me twice as he walked behind the 21" trimming mower. He seems like a good guy, but . . . . I'm trying to convince him that the mower cuts just as well at it's designed operating speed. I'm loosing my patience with people and it's only April. I picked a heck of a time to quit drinking.

    Is it possible to attach a cane or aluminum walker to a ZTR?
     
  2. martyman

    martyman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 220

    I had exactly the same thing happen last year. Older guy with a very large back yard that had too many trees and things to go around that expected me to do it with a 21" mower. I brought in my small Zero turn and he commented that it was too fast. I'm sure I could have done his lawn with a 21" mower but I would have priced him much higher and the cost I gave him was reasonable because I used a larger machine...
     
  3. lawnspecialties

    lawnspecialties LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,513

    You know, you don't have to accept everybody that wants your services. I know it's tough; especially when you're starting out. You feel like you have to take on virtually every client out there. But when they start telling you how you should run your business, it's time to step back and rethink this one.

    Remember, you're the professional. :)
     
  4. JimmyStew

    JimmyStew LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 367

    Yes, but someone asks you to mow and doesn't care how much $$. That's hard for some to pass up...until they see the other side!!
     
  5. corey4671

    corey4671 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,931

    my grandfather was like that. when he broke his hip an couldn't mow his yard I showed up to mow it for him. He got mad because the mower was so fast. told me never bring that piece of $hit on his yard again. I don't know what it is about that generation from say 65 on up. I guess they think that because they came up the hard way and had nothing that everyone should have to have it as hard as they did.

    I agree with the post above. When the customer starts telling you how to operate YOUR equipment, it's time to walk. I had an old man one time who I had all the respect in the world for..WWII combat wounded vet. Had been mowing his yard for a few years before I got my first Z. First time I mowed it with the Z got done considerably faster than I did with the tractor type mower I'd been using. HE got mad and said he shouldn't have to pay as much. That's when I had to draw the line and tell him thanks but no thanks. HIs grandson started mowing it for him after that. I'd still talk to him and go by and visit...just didn't need him as a customer.

    My dad is even like that to an extent. He'll talk about how great it was when you could "go to town" on a Saturday evening with a dollar, get some gas in the car, buy a coke and a block of dry ice and have money left over. He'll talk about how those days were so great. I'll bust his bubble by saying if those days were so great, get rid of your TV, telephone, A/C and running water. Sell you cars and tractors and go back to horses and mules as your forms of transportation and means of farming. That usually shuts him up for a few days about the good ol days.
     
  6. lawnjockey56

    lawnjockey56 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 227

    charge him by the hour and slooooooow down
     
  7. jkingrph

    jkingrph LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 807

    Well, I'm not 65, pushing 63 and at times wish my Scag Wildcat were faster. I'll admit though it is fast enough for this homeowner.

    I dont remember horses and mules commonly, but have seen my grandfather plowing with a mule. I do remember party line telephones, no tv,no ac in houses or cars and this was deep south. I also remember when gas was routeinly around 30cents per gallon. In 1969 I was a new butter bar in the Air Force, stationed in Orlando, Fla and gas wars were going on. We cold buy gas on base for 6-8 cents/gallon then. Life was good then but not as easy as now, there are so many more things to make life easier and more comfortable now, heck no one had dreamed of this internet, our computers required a building, with special air conditioning to handle the heat generated, and input was often by punched fiber cards, and huge reels of magnetic tape.
     
  8. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,369

    Yes, you don't have to take everything !!


    Well then, you'll just have to give him the price that makes it worth your while and then suck it up !!
     
  9. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,369

    I like this approach ... however, we may be fast approaching those days again very soon ... with gas going over $ 4.00 per gallon in the near future !!
     
  10. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,369

    I lived in Sanford, FL, in 1969 (just 20 miles north of Orlando) and remember when gas was 29 cents per gallon also ... I also remember the gas wars that you spoke of ... those were the good old days !!
     

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