Customer doesn't want to pay

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by LCL Landscapes, Dec 2, 2004.

  1. LCL Landscapes

    LCL Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    Recently I did a fall clean up at a customers house and she called and said that she didn't authorize the clean up. She also said we never did it in the fall in the past which is incorrect. The price was $375 , what do you guys think I should do with this one?
  2. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,341

    If you dont have a signed contract your best bet might be to forget it. While you may be able to prove you did the job in the past that doesnt auomaticly autherize you do continue doing cleanups. If you take her to court its going to be your word against hers and the court costs, even if you win, will probably be more than the clean up cost. If you do have a contract that states you will do fall clean ups, show it to her and then if she refuses to pay, you can nail her butt to the wall.
  3. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    if you did it in the past then she should pay for it. I guess the question is, have you asked her ahead of times in the past whether she wanted a clean up or did you just do it?
  4. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    Like said if there's a contract try and get her to pay at least a couple of times then go to court. No contract, not much you really can do except put the leaves back.
  5. LCL Landscapes

    LCL Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    thanks guys, she has been a maintenance customer of mine with no problems in the past. she's not on contract to automatically do a clean up without approval but in the past we have always done a fall clean up. we were in the area doing the neihbors and i went ahead and did it. do you think i should maybe try and compromise by tring to split the bill in half. like i said she is a regular customer w/ no problems in the past.
  6. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    I would tell her, "we have done clean ups in the past automatically with no problems at all, why is this year any different."

    I would tell her then, "Either pay up now, or I will take you to court and you will find another LCO."

    If she screws you this one time, who is to say that she won't do it again

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    I guess the key element would be, did she authorize leaf removal in past years, or did you just do them? If she always gave you the OK in the past, then you might have to suck it up and try to come to agree on some other price.
  8. Green Dreams

    Green Dreams LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 593

    You never know what new circumstances have come up with her either. If you want to keep her as a customer, you need to eat it. If not, put the screws to her, get nothing anyway and still lose a customer...
  9. coif_kid

    coif_kid LawnSite Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 93

    Seriously, I think you're going to have to let this one go if she didn't authorize the fall clean up. Whether authorizing the fall clean up was a part or not a part of the past seasons doesn't really apply in my mind. To charge someone for work you need to find out whether they wanted it or not. Simple as that. You CANNOT assume that they want it just because they let you go ahead and do it in the past.
  10. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Messages: 8,745

    But you cannot assume as well that she did not want you NOT to do it

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