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Anyone have this happen?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Baytownlawncare, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. Baytownlawncare

    Baytownlawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 236

    I get my first customer this year and he is one of those cash only guys which is fine. He is weekly and starts paying me up front for the entire month. Ok fine. After about 2 months he and the next payment is due he does not leave it. I go ahead and mow. I call him the next day and he states that he will just start leaving cash for each service not monthly like he had. Ok fine again. Pays pretty constantly. Then he starts missing payments and I have to chase him for payment. I hate making an extra trip for payments because it wastes my gas and time. Last week I mowed and no payment. Tuesday I call him (one day before the next service) and tell him hey I am coming tomorrow can you please leave a double payment. Again he is like no problem. I show up Wednesday this week and check for payment first and it is not there. So I leave him a note and tell him I can come back on Friday but will not start my equipment if both services are not paid for. He has always been happy with my work and I even ask him if everything is ok and he never has a problem. I am about ready to collect the payment for the service rendered and dump him. He is not receptive to invoicing or any "internet or electronic billling". What would you guys do?

  2. Littleriver1

    Littleriver1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 811

    It's called "holding your money hostage". I always walk away.
  3. chesterlawn

    chesterlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 704

    Next it will be, I left the money you didn't get it? Sorry, I don't know what to tell you.
  4. Baytownlawncare

    Baytownlawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 236

    "Next it will be, I left the money you didn't get it? Sorry, I don't know what to tell you."

    Yea I can see that happening. I am seriously thinking about dumping him. My wife told me to dump the trash and find better. I have noticed that once you get rid of trash like this guy you always seem to get a good one in his place that pays even more money!
  5. Golfpro21

    Golfpro21 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 563

    that is so true......we lost two pain in the a$$ customers last week.......and low and behold we picked up 3 new customers this week that are higher priced, easier cuts and better locations, oh and they don't seem to be PITA's

    Good luck with the season
  6. mnglocker

    mnglocker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 758

    Show up when he's home, collect and dump him.
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I knew from the git go it would be bad news.

    Had a guy who said I needed to run by his bank and cash his check on a specific day.

    I told him all checks go with the deposit to my bank.

    That is how I do things, I absolutely refuse to play these games, I even asked
    the customer if he thought it would be a good idea if I did this with all my customers.
    No, he said, just for this one check.
    I said no, if the check is no good, don't write it.

    Of course, the check bounced.

    Then it worked fine for a while but you know the rest of the story, this one didn't end well either.
    I even tried several times to tell these folks this lawn service thing was not a good idea,
    they wouldn't have it, nonsense they said.

    Hate that...
    Another one of those schools teaching me lessons I didn't feel I needed,
    guess I must have done something to deserve it.
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2010
  8. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,774

    Sometimes, things just happen, but from my experience in business, there is a certain percentage of people who actually are devious enough to "set you up" over a period of time. They will pay like clockwork for a while, then, like in your situation, they get a little behind, or the check is in the mail, or my car quit last week, and had to go in the shop.

    They play on our trust, because I always think, "Well, they have always paid me before, so....." First thing you know, they get a months free service out of you, and you will never see the money. I'm not saying this is the case with your client, just that I know it does happen, and more than one might think. They simply move on to the next guy, and play them the same way. Over a period of years, they can end up bilking people out of a substantial amount of money.
  9. Lawn Pawn

    Lawn Pawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from zone 3
    Messages: 568

    This is a wise man....

    It is sad so many of us need to learn this the hard way !
  10. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 616

    X2-Very common amongst the "General Contractor" types. I got set up for a $175,000.00 fall 4 years ago, after 10 years and 30 projects with a flawless payment history. It was the most expensive lesson I was ever force fed in 15 years of business.

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