Time to take a stand?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Dynamic, Jan 30, 2008.

  1. Dynamic

    Dynamic LawnSite Member
    Posts: 147

    What is everyones thoughts to the uninsured, retiree, student, shift worker(LOWBALLERS)? This is a professional industry as any other but yet we are not considered to be by most. We compete against the above who have walmart equipment pushed in there trunks and work at a fraction of the price because they have no overhead and have money coming in from other sources. I can understand the point of wanting to make extra money but what is happening is they are taking away from the people who make this there lively hood.
    There are so many of these people around that I have been thinking this year I am going to take a stand. I am worried about it harming me to a point but most of my business is commercial so if I lost a few residentials it doesn't matter. Its just the point of us claiming profits/expenses and running a business correctly and these people sliding through the holes. So I am thinking that I am going to start asking these people for there information as if I were a potential customer and then telling them they have a week to register and get insured and be a business or else I would report them for a number of violations.
    What do you think? Is this over the top or is it about time that we start doing this?
     
  2. gilatplc

    gilatplc LawnSite Senior Member
    from FL
    Posts: 330

    If you think you got it bad, try coming to Florida: laugh:

    Look, I hole hearting agree with you, BUT if you where to approach me I would likely tell to mind your own business (in a not so polite way)
    The only reason why I would say that is because it NOT your business.

    Now being that I am a legit business and "trying" to make my livelihood from this industry. I think this is more of a State Government thing OR there should be a nationally recognized organization that endorsed legit business in lawn and landscaping, like ASE for techs.

    Good thought, to bad it will never happen?
     
  3. NBI Lawn

    NBI Lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 135

    I guess I fit your idea of a typical low baller. I mow as a second job and I started it to pay for college. Difference is I am insured, only use Exmark and Toro commercial zeros. Have new diesel trucks and I look goooood :cool2:. :laugh: Oh and I probably charge too much.

    "So I am thinking that I am going to start asking these people for there information as if I were a potential customer and then telling them they have a week to register and get insured and be a business or else I would report them for a number of violations."

    The only problem with that is most residentials dont care if you are lagit or not. As long as they are getting it done cheap and it looks OK. If you did say that to someone they would probably just walk away, as long as they are not claiming to be insured there really isnt an issue. If you reported them it would sound something like this... " There is a guy with a lawn mower in the back of his truck that said he would mow my lawn for $20" dont think its going to be a high priority. Maybe for a company like Chemlawn they would look into it. How is anyone going to prove that they have any other accounts. They guy could just say that he only needs an extra $20 a week. Sure nobody will believe them but who is going to take the time and energy to prove otherwise.

    Sorry I went on a rant there but unfortunatly there really isnt a way to stop the uninsured guys from taking our business. I am with you though, I see the guys running around with a 1980 Ford POS with 4 guys in the cab and four 21' Murrys in the back working for free (or close to it anyway). Really though the home owner doesnt care as long as it gets done cheap.
     
  4. Trader Rick

    Trader Rick LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    You will just end up frustrated. Don't make yourself a target. Just keep on keeping on being the professional that you are. The flight by nighters come and go, the customers who go with them usually are a PITA any way only looking for the cheapest way to get their lawn mowed. The better accounts - The ones that build reputable businesses like yours will screen out the One Trick Ponies. :weightlifter:
     
  5. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 2,994

    Well said....and the absolute truth.
     
  6. coonman

    coonman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 682

    First of all I don't believe it is law that you have to be insured. Its foolish if your not, but I don't think its law. You would be asking for a bunch of trouble by doing this, plus wasting your own time when you could be mowing more lawns for your business etc. People will not be thrilled with you getting in their business. I was full time, but now part time. I drive a small pickup with two Toro 21 commercials and all the hand helds to go with it. I am insured and pay taxes.
    I bid any new lawns very high, because I really don't need any more. So my point is don't judge a book by its cover. Also some of these guys may be mowing their mom's ,sisters lawns etc for no charge. I feel your pain with the situation. Nobody likes lowballers, but there are some legit lco's that will lowball also. If you are doing quality work, you will be fine and the other guys will go away.
     
  7. LedgedaleLawn

    LedgedaleLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 377

    Although I hate it when I come across someone with a bogus business or worse, trying to take one of my accounts, this is America, home of opportunity, not Russia. I would like to see how many of us got their start with a push mower and a payer, I know I did. Now, I have a very legit, respectable business. Just be the bigger person and keep on going, minding your own business.
     
  8. lazer 46

    lazer 46 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 521

    I don't like the fact that everything I look at in the store is made in china, especially things I use every day like work boots. And the reason is that American Companies found a cheaper way of having things made. Instead of paying the american union worker $25 an hour plus benefits they pay a chineese factory worker $.40 an hour to turn out Wolverine,Carhartt,and a host of other shoes and boots. The reality of it is that the entire american work force has gotten low balled by Corporate America. We have to live with it.
     
  9. IN2MOWN

    IN2MOWN LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,993

    My advice is worry about your own company, do what you are supposed to do and everything will be fine.

    If it really bothers you that much find another line of work.
     
  10. IN2MOWN

    IN2MOWN LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,993




    Go ahead. The rest of us will be either be working or hitting the pavement trying to add more customers.

    I wish I had that kind of free time...
     

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