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too dry, why am i the only one not mowing?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DeereHauler, Jul 17, 2007.

  1. DeereHauler

    DeereHauler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 604

    well we haven't seen rain in almost a month, and i am now on my 3rd week of not mowing. we've been in or around 90 degree temps for the last month. i just cannot believe the amount of lcos still out there mowing like the grass has never been better. typically its only the weekend warriors out there, but its even the larger companies, what am i missing???

    no one here has irrigation, and those watering their lawn, still don't have grass growing. at the library near my parents house the lco hasn't missed a week yet. they'll be lucky if they ever get grass to grow again it looks so bad. when we get to a time like i will skip customers when they don't need cut, but when it gets too dry, i just stop altogether, unless a customer calls. i know if i were these homeowners and my mowing guy came and mowed, i wouldn't paid them, theres just no way to justify a cut when we're in such a bad situation.

    when mowing slows i have plenty of mulching, tree trimming, and other work to do. do you think these other companies depend so much on their mowing that they won't quit, in fear of going broke? mowing is 85% of what i do, but i save, and plan accordingly so i won't get hurt at times like this.

    so is this just poor planning on the lcos part, or just outright horrible business ethics? i just don't even know what to think about these other lcos anymore, they obviously aren't in this business for the same reason i am.
  2. agr682

    agr682 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    probably business ethics or maybe they are monthly billing and feel they need to make an appearance so the customer doesn't feel as though they are getting screwed.
  3. Liquidfast

    Liquidfast LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 739

    Even during the dry spells I don't know how you can find the time to "keep up" with what other companies are doing. No offense, but why is it a big deal?

    Our contracts are yearly. Our contracts state that we appear weekly. Whether its just maintaining the beds, getting rid of excess garbage or trimming the hedges we HAVE to be there.....no skips, period.

    Maybe that is what is stated in their contract(s). Are you worried that your customers will see them and not you? If that is the case, I wouldn't worry too much. Your grass customers accounts will look nicer, longer.
  4. IA_James

    IA_James LawnSite Silver Member
    from Iowa
    Posts: 2,593

    The only thing growing here is the weeds, I went and knocked them down everywhere yesterday. Got a little rain last night, but it's hot and sunny again today.
  5. DeereHauler

    DeereHauler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 604

    well i don't drive around looking for them, but when i'm spreading mulch, or driving to a job i do have the right to look around don't i? as for contracts, NO ONE does contracts around here besides huge companies and large town homes. i agree that if i had a contract with a large gas station chain, i would show up and clean beds or whatever i need to do. but this is not the case here. this is just mow and blow, no contracts.

    its a big deal to me because i know what damage mowing does to lawns this time if year , and that you can only hurt your business. i don't need to rip my customers off to get a pay check.

    i hope my customers lawns do look better, and i believe they will. the reason i posted this questions is because as a person conducting business i just couldn't take advantage of my customers like that. the few contracts i do have say no mowing during dry spells.
  6. Daily Lawn/Landscape

    Daily Lawn/Landscape LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 694

    Do your customers buy insurance? if so, are they using it everyday? NO! We offer a service to the customer to give them a nice looking lawn and landscape. If its to dry to mow we weed beds, trim excessive growth on the shrubs pick up litter etc... That is our insurance policy to the customer. I have never in my 6 years had a customer ever complain about us showing up. If you offer the customer a service agreement outlining what you will be doing throughout the year, they will have nothing to complain about just great things to say about your company. Also, if you are doing this for a living you cannot afford to miss a week of service from any of your customers.
  7. prizeprop

    prizeprop LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 820

    Mostly it is done to keep employees employed and to sustain cash flow.Some companies have certain employees to do just grass and another to do landscapes,trim, mulch, etc.Do you lay them of until it rains? they wont be there!! Sure it would be nice to have all that extra work to keep everyone busy. Once you miss a weeks cuts ,thats lost money forever,youll never recover it.Unless its a monthly charge regardless of appearances.We have been cutting during droughts and the lawns always recover.Is it ethical? Is it ethical for me to go broke when I supply reliable service during the rainy seasons?I think most customers understand.My mailbox is still full of monthly bills during a drought!
  8. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,372

    I run contracts only, and if it's too dry, I skip. I still charge the customer full price.

    I'm the professional, I'm the one that knows what's good for the turf. I don't do anything extra for the customer. I've already been weeding beds, that's part of the weekly service. If you're doing it right, you already have Snapshot, Treflan or even Preen in the beds so there's no weeds anyways.

    I'd say the reason that they're mowing, is because they bid the property cheap, so they're not able to save, and therefore just trying to keep the cashflow.
  9. IN2MOWN

    IN2MOWN LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,993

    Sounds like a good racket you have going. Do your customers wear helmets and ride in short buses?

    MOW PRO LAWN SERVICE LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,566

    Well you can preach contracts till you are blue in the face getting residential customers to sign and keep you there is one more thing.

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