Need a nice way to say this

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by watatrp, Apr 23, 2001.

  1. watatrp

    watatrp LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 496

    I have a condo account that I've done for four years. 50+ condos. Due to some problems with some legal stuff with the condo owners association there was some wording that allowed some of the condo owners to withdraw from the association. Three out of 50 have decided that they don't want to pay dues. Those three asked me if I would continue to mow their lawns and I would bill them separately. The president of the condo assoc. would not like me to do this since he feels that they should be paying just like everyone else. I feel the same now that I know the situation. They are getting discounted cable rates. They get to have their streets plowed etc. I don't want to chance losing the whole account for these three people. I mowed them once and now have to tell them tactfully that I can't mow them anymore. I know that once I tell them this, WWIII will start between them and the association. Any creative ways to do this and keep me out of the politics?
     
  2. dhicks

    dhicks Member
    Posts: 771

    IMHO you really don't have a dog in this fight. Kindly tell the three owners that you have a contract with the condo association, and that you errored by mowing for them. Then hand them a list of mowers to call so that they can negotiate a price for mowing.

     
  3. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    Tough situation. I'm assuming that you don't have a contract with the association. I'm not critisizing you for this because I don't work by written contract either.
    I don't know if I have an answer for this one but I do have a couple of thoughts. If this was a situation I would be in I would have to weigh the benefits of not doing the three along with what happens to the three I don't do.
    The lawn at the three will have to be mowed by somebody-the condo owner, you, or a competitor. What does it cost to mow these three units? Will not mowing them hurt the bottom line of your business?
    On the other hand, if you mow them, you risk losing 47 other accounts. I think you would have to meet with the three accounts and explain to them that you are in an awkward position by no fault of your own. When you began mowing this complex you did it as a whole (50 accounts. I assume paid for by 1 association check). You could respectfully explain that you do not want to chance losing the entire complex because of this internal conflict. The one time mow you did could be a courtesy mow (for pay of course).
    I think this would be easier than trying to convince 47 people that you are an innocent bystander and you just want to mow all of the lawns irregardless of the internal conflicts.

    Now the other danger in this is that these 3 may find another LCO that will do their lawn and possibly try and bid on the 47 other units with a contract that states that they are here to mow the whole. If they lowball you the may get it next year. Not a probability but it is 1 possibility.
    I wish you luck and please keep us advised on what eventually transpires out of this.
     
  4. watatrp

    watatrp LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 496

    Yes, I do have a contract with the condo assoc. I have a good relationship w/ the condo owners. I hate to see three condos mowed by another company. Part of the reason they are all paying dues is so that everything looks the same when they all get mowed on the same day. They do receive a price break from me because they are all at one location. The three that will have to find someone else will have to pay more. Just didn't know I'd have to be part politician when I started mowing grass. If a competitor comes in and gets the account next year then that's the way the cookie crumbles. I think the association will have a little more loyalty to me because I am doing it this way. I started doing this place when there were only eight condos. Now there are 50. I kind of feel like it's my baby. Also nice that they build more every year and my business increases without me having to do a thing.
     
  5. BigEd

    BigEd LawnSite Senior Member
    from MD
    Posts: 299

    47 condo units out weigh 3 condo units by alot.Keep the association happy or you will have no condo units.Not a hard decision when it could take food off my table.
     
  6. curlawngreen

    curlawngreen Banned
    Posts: 309

    The condo asso. will take care it self. I would advise you to take care of the condo asso. Advise the three rebels to look elsewhere for lawn service, that you would like to help them but due to circumstances you can't.
     
  7. mike

    mike LawnSite Member
    Posts: 84

    I'M IN SOMEWHAT THE SAME SITUATION AS YOU. I CUT FOR A SOON
    TO BE 50 UNIT COMPLEX. THERE ARE APPROX. 11 UNITS AT THIS TIME. I HAVE A WRITTEN CONTRACT WITH THE ASSOCIATION TO MOW
    ALL UNITS WEEKLY. OWNER TOLD ME THE OTHER DAY THAT THE ASSOCIATION MAY DISBAND. I HAVE A 30 DAY NOTIFICATION CLAUSE
    IN MY CONTRACT. AFTER THOSE 30-DAYS I WILL NOTIFY ALL OWNERS
    TO TRY TO KEEP MOWING THEIR UNITS. WHAT I DON,T GET I'LL
    PICK UP ELSEWERE. LIFE'S TO SHORT TO WORRY ABOUT THINGS.
    GOOD LUKE & HAVE A GOOOOOOOOOD DAY!!!!!!
     
  8. cos

    cos LawnSite Addict
    Posts: 1,253

    Talk to the association and tell them that you can't turn anybody away and would rather not get in any disputes over what they choose to do or not do.
     
  9. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,915

    47 beats 3 if it were me. :)
     
  10. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,085

    2 options or use both!

    #1 tell them its a conflict of business intrest between you and the association if you do the yards.(which I can't understand why it is from your case, and why the assoc. doesn't want you to service them)

    #2 Sub out the work. Everyones happy!
     

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