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 Most Outrageous Customer Ever...

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Sean Adams, Apr 28, 2008.

  1. Sean Adams

    Sean Adams LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,597

    I was talking to a friend of mine who owns a lawn and landscape company here in Pennsylvania on Saturday. I actually sold part of my business to him a few years ago. I asked him how some of my old customers were doing and he told me that I would not believe the story he was about to tell me.

    He said that 2 weeks ago he went to meet with this couple that were former customers of mine. When they were my customers they weren't too difficult to deal with, but every once in awhile they would put me through the ringer.

    Ayway, he said they asked him to meet with them to go over some things they wanted to do this upcoming year on their property. They have a nice place - about 4 acres, very well kept. He showed up and at first they did not answer the door. He checked his book to make sure he had the right date and time, which he did.

    He waited for about 10 minutes on their front porch and finally started to walk away to get back in his truck.

    Suddenly, the front door flew open and the man of the house yelled out to him. He walked back to the front porch and that was when it all started...

    He said he could hear the guy's wife yelling from inside the house. He asked if this was a good time and the guy told him it was fine.

    He walked into the front entrance and the wife came walking down the stairs and asked her husband, "Did you tell him or should I?"

    The husband remained silent. My friend said the woman walked up to him and said the following... (and I believe him because I don't think anyone could even make this up....)

    "We have decided to get divorced. However we cannot come to an agreement on who gets the house. Therefore, until the judge decides, we are both going to live here. There are things he wants done in the yard and there are things I want done in the yard. He wants the fornt of the house to be newly landscaped so we can sell the house. I have no intentions of selling the house so I want a new patio and bbq in the back near the existing patio."

    My friend said he stood there with his mouth wide open... he could not believe what he was hearing.

    Then the best part....

    The woman said, "Oh, and you will need to bill us separately - one bill for him and one bill for me because I don't want him claiming I am spending his money any more."

    I laughed as hard as I have laughed in quite some time.

    I know you guys have dealt with some serious nut cases too, so let's hear it... I love these stories.
  2. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Posts: 7,879

    :laugh: That is funny Sean!

    I think I told about this customer of mine before on here. She was like Jeckle and hyde. You never knew who she was going to be when she showed up at the door. The sweet lil ol lady or the witch or the mental case.

    She may run out the door when you were just starting to mow and yell. "You can't mow today, there are spiders and snakes in the yard!!. Come back when they are gone" She meant it too lol

    Or she would come out and start dancing and swatting at the spirit world. This while she handed you your check

    One day, I see her come around from the back yard covered with fire ants. I said holy &^%$ let me help you get them off. She said "Oh don't worry about them, they are my friends" and walked back into the house.

    Another time she gave me this piece of paper which was written to the bank. Give Charles $45 for cutting my lawn. I called the bank and they said "no way!":laugh:
  3. Supper Grassy

    Supper Grassy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,582

    That is a funny story sean
  4. LawnBoy89

    LawnBoy89 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 967

    That last one was funny.
  5. Lynden-Jeff

    Lynden-Jeff LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,405

    Thats a good one but I had a crazy CRAZY one this winter.

    I subbed for a friend doing an HOA of about 40 homes. This has been a record winter, near the end of one of the last storms we had just finished a push at this one place. The snow blower guys usually do the driveways and I do the road ways and back drag some of the driveways if they are behind. Well the blowers of course do a way better job and 1 driveway I back dragged did not get cleaned up by the snow blowers.

    So we leave and a few hours later my friend beeps me and says one person is complaining we missed the driveway and they can't get out (which im positive I didnt miss one). I said id be back as soon as I could to check. So I get back and my friend is right around the corner so he is going to come aswell. I pull up in to the driveway to back drag it again (now its 2 inchs of hard pack and 2 inchs of fluff since the storm ended). I backdrag while the other 3 guys with me shovel the walkways and scrape hard pack off. While this is happening some 40 y/o **** comes out and starts yelling at my guys. "You stupid ****s missed this driveway" and "Why the **** didn't you do this driveway!. "If you damaging anything im gonna sue your asses". At this point I beeped my buddy who was just pulling up that this guy was a wackjob. The guy walked right up to my very calm friend jamming his finger in his face saying "Where the **** were your ****ing wimps earlier!!" . Amazingly my buddy turned around and got back in his truck while the guy continued to ask where he was going and maybe he should do his fing job. At this point he tried yelling at me through my half open window which I rolled up in his face.

    The funny thing is his MOM who he lived with came out and said "come back here im never going to get my driveway plowed again!"

    Crazy people I tell yea.
  6. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,988

    I have 2 which come to mind. One was an older 'gentleman' who was always plastered, just reeked of booze, I never saw him with a shirt on. He would always come out and complain about the heat, then pat his chest and try to get us to spray him. One time he was very insistent, "Shpraay mee, c'mon, shrrraay meeee" while patting his chest and blocking my way. I was applying 24-5-10 granular. :hammerhead:

    One yr I had a client who was legally insane. Her husband and guardian gave her the spray service for her b-day. She would sit around all day and dig holes in the yard, burying bails of hay and various lawn ornaments. Per the husband's instructions, I just sprayed/fertilized where I could, I usually ended up treating about 1/3 of the 6k I had bid on.:laugh:
  7. MJS

    MJS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,316

    What the heck?!? :hammerhead:

    I think I have a topper, though:

    A customer I used to have - dropped her last year - was about the wierdest person I have ever worked for, and I get some weird customers.

    So she had the sewer line in her front yard dug up - line replaced, etc. Once they filled up the hole in the yard, they also had to replace a section of the sidewalk and street (concrete).

    So they washed their tools off in her hose, left a little bit of cement dust behind/grey colored mud in a few spots. Not a big deal, right?

    When I come to mow she is all worked up - saying that the guys had contaminated her lawn blah blah blah. So she offers to pay me $30 (!) to dig out the cement (dust) from her front lawn. :laugh:

    So I go to get out my shovel, thinking that I would just throw the stuff in the bed of my truck - she runs out of the house with a bunch of old plastic butter tubs - wants me to put the dirt in that. lol. Says that she called St. Louis Co. about disposing toxic waste (?!) and that she thinks it needs to be in sealed containers.

    SO. . . I dig the crud out of her lawn, fill about four of those little butter tubs with "grey" colored dirt. She handles the whole thing like it's radioactive - gloves - carries the stuff out in front of her etc. Puts it in her garage so that she can dispose of it during the next "toxic waste" pickup. I tried really hard to keep a straight face - convince her it wasn't that big of a deal - "No, no, this is really bad stuff, cement dust". lol :laugh:

    She paid the $30, but it wasn't too long after that that I dropped her. Wonder why. :dizzy:
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I'd have to say that would be me lol
  9. lawnspecialties

    lawnspecialties LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,513

    That was hilarious.:laugh:
  10. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Posts: 5,859

    508 views & only 8 replies??? What's up with that? Anyways....I got one..... A long time customer (a man) often comes to the door dressed as a woman. Skirt, nylon stockings, fake boobs, yet has a 5:00 shadow of a beard. Sometimes he will walk me around the yard to show me areas of concern. He's married to a beautiful wife. They have been loyal customers for over 15 years -- both for lawn care & tree/shrub care. Very nice people -- certainly not outrageous, just unique.

Share This Page