Would you drop this customer???

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by DFW Area Landscaper, Apr 12, 2004.

  1. DFW Area Landscaper

    DFW Area Landscaper LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,116

    This lady signed up for my service last fall. This was before I was accepting credit cards or requiring last month in advance.

    She paid 3 out of 4 statements late. This last one was two months past due. Her yard has weeds nearly knee high right now. I left a note on her door three or four weeks ago that said her lawn was scheduled for this week, but because she was past due, we couldn't service her.

    She finally paid it this week (it was only 83 bucks). On the previous statements, she had paid my 2% per month late fees. On this one, she didn't.

    Everytime I've ever spoken with her, she's been very friendly and bragged on our service. Her location is ideal for us. But her payment record is just pathetic.

    Would you continue to service her account? My gut tells me to take the business but my mind says let her go.

    Later,
    DFW Area Landscaper
     
  2. lawnmedic1

    lawnmedic1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 122

    If weeds are knee high then I would charge a cleanup fee, if I was going to keep her.... But personally I would not, unless desperate for work...Chuck
     
  3. shorty7616

    shorty7616 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 230

    I would continue with her if you can get a month in advance or work out a cash payment system with her. If she can't pay an $83 bill then somethings wrong. Since you seem to have a fairly large biz I would say good riddence, unless she can work with your terms.
     
  4. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    there aint nothin like bustin yur azz on someones property, all the while having that sick feeling in your stomach wondering when and if you'll ever get paid.
     
  5. Doster's L & L

    Doster's L & L LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 616

    The prime location for advertisement is a good thing and it is also a bad thing. It's a good thing if you're manicuring the lawn and it looks real good. The people notice this and they will think of you. It's a bad thing when she waits till the weeds are knee high before she pays you. The people notice this as well. Everyone sees how crappy that lawn looks and they will remember you. I would try to get her to pay a month ahead kinda like a deposit. If she keeps her bills paid up, then keep her, if not, drop her like a hot potato. This can workout good for you if can make her play by your rules. No one likes to drop a customer, but sometimes you have to. Remember this: "The public will remember you by the work you do."

    I had to drop KFC this year because they wanted me to put them on an every other week mowing schedule. I told them that i had a reputation to uphold and that i wouldn't be classified with that type of work. Hope this helps!
     
  6. GrassBustersLawn

    GrassBustersLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 983

    Give her the boot!

    Mike
     
  7. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,332



    That's nothing..We dropped 3 McDonald's stores for similar happenings..BTW-The KFC here has their uniformed employees cut the grass, THEN go back in and cook chicken..Needless to say we don't eat there during the summer months. Hardee's does the same thing..the managers are too tight with bonus money to do it right, so they take advantage of the employees??Wrong...:angry:
     
  8. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    Mace,

    Lawn guys get paid last.

    Sad but true.
     
  9. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,842

    Sounds like for the most part she's a perfect customer for you - except for her payment record.

    I'd try to figure out a way to arrange another method of payment and try to keep her. I'd call or go over and discuss it in person. Try not to put too much of the blame on her and make her defensive. I'd just say something like, "Mrs. Jones. I wanted to take a minute and discuss something with you. I really like you as a customer. And I appreciate the referrals you send us. I really want to keep working for you. But I also need to resolve some challenges in regards to payment. You see, in order to pay my bills and employees, etc. on time, I really need to get all of my payments from my customers on time. And in that past, that hasn't happened. I wonder if we could discuss other options for payment. Maybe you can give us your credit card number and we'll store it in our vault and just charge it once per month on a day you specify? Would that work? Or maybe if monthly billing for you is inconvenient we can arrange it so you pay every 3 or 6 months in advance? What would work best for you?"

    See also my previous post in regards to AutoPay (Click Here)
    I always get paid on time from 100% of my customers these days because of our autopay program.
     
  10. proenterprises

    proenterprises LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,297


    sad but VERY TRUE!
     

Share This Page