1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

The King of Lowballers boasts of his conquests. Should I be angry?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Yuanding, Jul 27, 2008.

  1. Yuanding

    Yuanding LawnSite Member
    from England
    Posts: 82

    I was finishing off at a regular (7 years) customer's last week when a man in a truck drives up and explains he's about to dig up the driveway to prepare for an extension that is being built on the property. That's fine by me, I thought, as long as it doesn't interfere with my work. Then the customer comes out and says: "Can you not come for the next eight weeks? You'll be in the way of the construction workers." "That's fine", I said, feeling a bit undervalued but trying not to show it.
    This in itself didn't get me rattled. What got me was the ensuing conversation with the bloke in the truck as I was loading up my equipment to leave.
    Truck man: "I do a bit of your kind of work myself; you know, mowing, hedge cutting, that kind of thing."
    Me: "Oh yeh?"
    Truck man: "Yeh, I've got a dozen Council properties that I do, at odd moments when I feel like it, and the pay is fantastic. I'm in and out in twenty minutes each and it's thirty quid ($60) per cut.
    Me: "Yeh, that sounds pretty good."
    Truck man: "I see you've got mostly Stihl stuff in your vehicle. All my stuff's Echo, and it's great."
    Me: "I believe they're both pretty good. Why did you go for Echo?"
    Truck man: "Oh it's not mine, it's all Council stuff. I work for them, you see, in the highways dept, and I just use what they have lying around. Actually I use their gas as well, and mostly I manage to do it in their time too. It's a nice little earner."
    Me: "I can imagine".
    Was he the moron for telling me this, or am I the moron for imagining I can compete with this ultimate kind of lowballing?
    I loaded up as fast as possible and got out of there, feeling I'd lost my way in life a bit.
  2. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,742

    **** him!! they come and go. no reason to lose sleep!!
  3. punt66

    punt66 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,538

    He is full of it anyway. Plus he is just a thief.
  4. mississippiturf

    mississippiturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 674

    So, are you going to be able to put off doing her lawn for that long??? I would need a bush hog if my customers had me wait for eight weeks, plus the price goes up accordingly.
  5. Yuanding

    Yuanding LawnSite Member
    from England
    Posts: 82

    She knows (I told her) she will have to pay me for the extra labour when work is resumed. This is the first interruption at this account in seven years.
  6. 19-SAH-98

    19-SAH-98 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 14

    Old Hillbilly saying: "Don't get mad, get even." Call who he works for and give them a 'heads up' ---on the sly. I'd do it just for insulting my equipment, but I'm and a**hole.
    He's removing food from somebody's table---not cool.
  7. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 7,053

    Why would the customer want you to stop mowing and stuff if all they are having done is a driveway? What about the rest of the lawn? Why would they let it go while someone else does work there? It doesn't add up. How could the other guys "be in the way" of mowing the rest of the lawn? It's not like your there 8hrs a day.
  8. Yuanding

    Yuanding LawnSite Member
    from England
    Posts: 82

    The main lawn runs down the side of the property all the way from front to back. It's not just a driveway, but a bigger house that's being built. The new extension is going to take up half of this lawn and the rest of the lawn will probably be scattered with building materials etc needed for the work. This will probably obstruct access to the lawn at the rear of the property also. The lawn at the front of the property is very small and won't suffer much if left (her words, not mine). Don't forget that properties are often smaller in the UK than US, and house extensions often swallow up significant portions of the plot.
    Another thing: if truck man works for the Council but was digging up a private customer's driveway, who did the digger belong to?
  9. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 7,053

    I see, so it's not enough to worry about with the mess that will be made.

    I'd look into this guy farther. If he works for the highway department, he could loose his job if the right people find out he's using the equipment AND fuel to do lawn work, only to pocket all the money. As well as other equipment.
  10. RonB

    RonB LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 429

    That guy is ripping off you and every other taxpayer. Like others I'd report him too.

Share This Page