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What should I do?

Discussion in 'Florida Lawn Care Forum' started by williams lcm, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,956

    The Irony of the above statement coming from a Canadian.





    PS: Yes I am screaming and about to pull my hair out reading this thread.
  2. Plantculture

    Plantculture LawnSite Member
    Posts: 128

    Hope the Guy from Georgia is reading this thread.
  3. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,638

    I knew if you chimed in on this thread that was going to be along the lines of what you said. :canadaflag:

    To the OP: How many years of this have you been explaining this? These two properties are the first two you replace next year and save yourself the headache next year. :)

    As many have said - contract if you can but honestly you are only going to get so far with that as you can not get blood out of a turnip :rolleyes:...and some will say oh well put a lien on the house, small claims etc etc...but lets get real...for what you are charging for these size lots - what inputs are you going to have to use to get your money?

    Unknown has a similar few that I do - figure out what you are making per hour on these lots and do not get caught up in the price per month. If you are flying through them and can afford to meet the comp while making a good amount per hour....then do it...especially if there is nothing that you do that he does not that you can point out as a value to the customer and that is were the salesmanship Ric mentioned comes in. Obviously if he has tried this other company and reliability was a issue...remind him of this and ask him if it is worth $120.00 or whatever the difference is per year to go through the headaches of wondering if his lawn service will show up or not. :confused: What separates you from him? That is your pitch to the owner. If you keep him at the current price then great....if you have to lower your $ per month to keep two accounts during the winter months....do it...and if they allow you to keep making a good profit even at those amounts....then accept it....if not next spring the next two accounts you pick up...drop the others and just consider it a wash for the better. :drinkup:
  4. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,638

    He is reading it aloud on his mobile while his wife is driving the truck loaded with lawn equipment right now on the way down here. She is currently pulling a U-turn!
  5. I don't necessarily agree. You don't build a solid business on people that drop you over $10, keep you in the summer and then demand price decreases in the winter. I guess if you need the business that bad, I guess deal with the bs. I would drop this guy with no questions asked. It's not like it's a high dollar account and the people are picky. It's low dollars and cheap people. Just my .02
  6. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,638

    The OP's original Post stated that most likely two accounts were in question. These accounts I believe he said were $75 wanting the $65 price. If he can keep them at the current price that is $150.00 a month....great for him. If he has to match the comps price of $65 a month, that is $130.00 a month in the winter months, which is why I said keep them through winter and drop them in the summer when replacements come along. Assuming he cuts twice each month for the rest of winter at the $130.00 and each visit at both property takes him 30 minutes which is hard to believe if he is doing the bare basics given the size, he still only has two hours in on BOTH properties so he is grossing $65.00 a hour and has this income during the winter months when accounts in our part of the industry are harder to gain.
    IF he does as you suggest and drops them out of his pride...that is $0.00 a month.

    Now pride is great and all but I will take the Moneypayup especially during the winter.

    Let me leave you with a scene from one of my favorite movies that sums up my feelings on this.
  7. stickleylawncare

    stickleylawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 170

    Sounds like you just need to switch over to an annual contract. Most of our customers are 12 month billing, on contract. For those that dont, we are just month to month, and they pay a higher fee. They keep us year to year, and they pay extra each year when we start up again to clean out the winter mess. We probably make more off the non contracted customers, but I like the peace of mind, and the contracted customers like having a lawn guy year round keeping an eye on things for them. These are the same customers that don't skimp on weed control, mulching, and fertilizer too.

    Also, I pay Comcast a flat fee every month, no matter how much bandwidth I use... why would not bill the same as a monthly service provider.
  8. LGL

    LGL LawnSite Member
    Posts: 90

    I agree with Diamond, drop them, continue delivering quality service to the other locals you have close by. Be polite, professional and explain that you just can't reduce your prices to match the lowballer. Your work will speak for itself as it did last year, when he returns have him sign a contract or forget it. Spring is arouond the corner, you will find two accounts before you know it. Doesn't sound like its worth the drama. Remember, you are in business to provide quality services in which customers pay for, you are in this to make money, don't let someone make you feel like you are the bad guy, don't play his game anymore. You have to MAKE MONEY!!!!!
  9. jvanvliet

    jvanvliet LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,939

    :wall I still can't believe people engage in verbal agreements:It's simple, if they don't want to sign an agreement, they don't intend to stand by their word.
  10. rob7233

    rob7233 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 861

    Yep, That's how you screen new potential clients guys. A service agreement protects both parties without the reoccurring stress of you having to explain your company policies over and over again.

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