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You can move, but you cannot hide!!!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mower_babe, Dec 23, 2003.

  1. mower_babe

    mower_babe LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 790

    I had a one time leaf removal account in Oct for this lady who was renting next to one of our accounts. We did the work, I hand delivered the bill of $60.00 - net 10, because I didn't particularly trust her (instincts.) Took her forever to come to the door, I think she was hoping I would leave, but I waited.

    10 days pass, 15 days pass. I go to her house. She has moved. No contact, no forwarding address. Oh-crap! So, I go to the neighbors house to confirm that she moved, and she did. She told me the town that she might have moved to. I get on the internet - she is no where to be found. I go to the post office to try to get info. They told me that they couldn't help me and that if I wanted to try, I could send an envelope to the old address and write on the envelope "Address service requested." and that the letter would be sent back to me with the correct address written on it.
    So, as the story goes, hubby was passing through that town, the same day and happens to look to the right and sees her van. What luck. He goes up to the door and knocks and knocks...He could hear people in the house and see the lights are on. No one would come to the door. No address on the mailbox, this is along a highway.

    That was on a Friday. So, the following Sunday, I have to go through this town and about 10am, I pull up to the house. They are home. I bring a bill with late fees applied. Go up to the door - knock for a few minutes until she finally comes to the door. YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN HER LOOK. Complete surprise. She says, "How did you find me??" Now, can you believe that! I told her that people aren't as hard to find as they want to be(with a smile.)

    And I hand her the bill, tell her she is overdue, ask her to pay me right now. She comments that I have the nerve to come to her house on Sunday, asking for money. How dare I? And then she starts in about this story of her past landlord not returning her deposit - yadda, yadda, yadda and how she has seen a lawyer (making excuses for nonpayment) SO, I see the opportunity and tell her that she doesn't need a lawyer and I segway into the stories of my experience with deadbeat customers and that every one that I have taken to small claims court has paid me every penny + court fees + late fees + even the mailing expenses for certified letters. (now you and I know that I have only taken 1 guy to court, but I am one for one;) ) I think she gets the message. I say how would you like to pay - I tell her I'll accept check or cash. She says she has no checking account and no cash on her until she gets paid on Mon. I am like, "HUH?!?" I thought I was getting somewhere. Well, I said, "Ok, so you can go to the bank after you get your check and get a money order, I will be looking for the money paid in full by Wednesday." I wish her Happy Holidays and tell her good luck with her landlord.

    Guess what??? I got the money on Wednesday. I was just as surprised as you are.

    So, just remember, if you have got a deadbeat, they can be found by sending an envelope through with old address on it, and write on the envelope "Address Service Requested.

    Good Luck!!
  2. zmowing

    zmowing LawnSite Member
    from York,PA
    Posts: 85

    I won't even mow a yard if they rent I've been burnt to many times.I don't have any time to chase money.
  3. ElephantNest

    ElephantNest LawnSite Bronze Member
    from La.
    Posts: 1,878

    Smooth move. I'll remember that one.
  4. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 4,771

    I have had to deal with 3 late payers throughout this year. All of them were renters. Two of them have not yet paid. I think next year I will not cut for renters or require a one month paid in advance. Still, I don't think renters are very good accounts. Most only hold a lease for one year. On occasion you will find a long term renter, but not often.
  5. LawnPerfect

    LawnPerfect LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 318

    great info.
    thats a good trick.
  6. Ron Greenwood Jr

    Ron Greenwood Jr LawnSite Member
    from IL
    Posts: 78

    $2000 in overdue invoices here I just turned them into a creditor the bad thing is they take 30 percent.
  7. J&R

    J&R LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 835

    What works of me. I had a shirt with bill collector printed in large letters on the back. I go in were the dead beat works and ask for them. get paid every time.
  8. jlewis

    jlewis LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    Good job m-b!

    Right before Thanksgiving, my brother calls and says the guy that sits next to him needs his roof repaired. I talk to the guy and find out he lives w/in my working area. Go to see damage and call him back w/ a price. He says great, do the work. BTW - My neighbor needs his roof fixed also. I call neighbor w/ quote. He says great, do the work. Do I need to sign a contract? (Big flag!!) I say, no. I go out with a helper and do both roofs the Sunday after t-giving. While I am on the neighbor's roof, he comes out, introduces himself and asks if we can attach a piece of siding. I say no prob. 15 minutes later knock on door. No answer. Ring bell. No answer. What the he!!, he was just here, its a townhouse, for crying out loud! Leave bill in door. 3 days pass, 4 days, 5 days Saturday, I get my check. Monday the original guy calls me. "None of my business, but did my neighbor pay you?" Yep. "Good, he hung himself Sunday."

    No sh!t, I read the obit. By far the strangest thing yet.

  9. leadarrows

    leadarrows LawnSite Senior Member
    from N/A
    Posts: 925

    Gee wiz jlewis just how big was that bill?
  10. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    You huusband should have burned her new home down dressed as santa, ho- no It would have saved you a trip LOL


    It just a joke before I got to read about it not being professional

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