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On Call Mowing???

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by r8derman, Mar 21, 2006.

  1. r8derman

    r8derman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 45

    Hi guys-

    Just had a question for some of you to see if any of you had ever ran into this problem before. I have a customer whom I picked up last year. A fairly big bermuda front w/ a huge fescue back yard. Last year we did this property weekly and they paid by the month but were always slow to pay. Sometimes almost going over 30 days and having to be warned of an extra charge. Last week I e-mailed them to make sure they would be on the schedule for the upcoming season. His wife answered back and said they are in a financial drought, and that he would be cutting it this season. Today he left me a message asking if I would cut it this week and then be "on call" whenever he needs a cut for the rest of the season. Now how do you handle a situation like this? Do I tell him to take a hike? Isn't this leaving him open to grow it as long as he wants and then have me cut it at the same price, putting more wear and tear on my mowers and taking up more time which will lose my company money. Any ideas fellows?
  2. PGA

    PGA LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 710

    Id either tell him to take a hike or make sure he knows that he is at the very bottom of the list and all your other GOOD clients come first and foremost.
  3. grasswhacker

    grasswhacker LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,873

    All they would get from me is a busy signal. I would drop them like a hot rock.
    I had a client that wanted me to mow for the spring, and their son mow during the summer since he was "old enough" now.
    They wanted me however to do the other maint. things. I told them that this is my profession and that I do not split responsibilities on my lawns. I told them to take a few days to think about it and let me know. A week later they called and said they wanted to still continue with my services. Hope this helps.
    On the slow pay, that would be a red flag for me to drop however.
  4. dKoester

    dKoester LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,257

    As a businessman you should run your company professionally. Handle the matter likewise.
  5. The mayor

    The mayor LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 592

    When I started out I would not turn down work like you are talking about. Now I have a tight route with weekly customers and am up to my eyes in work. I won't even take a customer that wants to be on call. You need to decide if you need the work or not. If you lack customers you may want to take it. If you are growing and can do without I would pass.

    TURF DOCTOR LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,138

    NOT,i would not waste time on these people you are setting yourself up for non payment,if you need the cash and we all do pay per cut and if they did beat you it's not much.
  7. Rev. Crabgrass

    Rev. Crabgrass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 120

    I would let that one slide. Or I would charge rates like a locksmith or a trip to the ER. Add 20 buck to every cut that they give less than one week notice. They will of course only call when he hasn't mowed in two weeks and it needs to be done yesterday. Save yourself the headache or charge the crap out of them and get that boat you have always wanted.

  8. vkurt711

    vkurt711 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 32

    I'm with the good reverend on this one. IF you choose to be "on call" and do the work, charge more.
  9. webami

    webami LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    Being "on-call" is really for their benefit, not yours. By doing such, you are providing a high-end service, and the cost of the job should reflect that. Just think if everybody wanted to be on call. You wouldn't know what you are doing from day to day. No thanks, charge them extra for this convenience. JMO

    SCAG POWER LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 343

    I have an account some what like this the past too years they went all year, paid on time .This year the husband lost his job at Disney and they are down to one check. So i told them provided i can get to it ill cut it .

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