Customer Rant Thread

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by weeze, May 4, 2018.

  1. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    customer #1 - new customer this year. i mowed the property 2 times and then i tell them i'm coming to mow again since it had been 2 weeks and they were on a bi weekly schedule. customer tells me to skip a week because he doesn't get paid until then. i say i can't mow it the next week because i already have a full day of mowing on that day but maybe something will change and i can work him in on another day or something. i contact him to ask if he wants me to come mow and he says he mowed it himself. i said ok i can come mow it the next week on the regular scheduled day then. he responds with "i'm gonna mow it myself."

    sounds like money issues but they had been paying me $60-$70 instead of the $50 price i gave to them. i'm just like wtf? why? i don't get it.

    customer #2 - this one has been a customer for 2 years. it's been ok because mostly i've been dealing with the husband. now this year the husband has had open heart surgery so he's out of it and the wife is the one i'm dealing with. she is a major biotch. complains about all this little stuff that doesn't even matter. asks me to lower the deck and go over the lawn again and stuff like that.

    i mow it shorter the next cut and she still isn't happy. it's not my fault the lawn is full of weeds and clover so it looks shaggy after a few days even if i cut it shorter. this one has never really been on a schedule and always calls when they want it cut. usually every 2 weeks on average. last year the husband mowed the yard some and they just asked me to do the trimming and edging and stuff. numerous times i've thought of dumping them but i keep putting up with their crap for some reason.

    it's a small yard but very technical. i charge $40 but it's really $50 worth of work i'm giving them. when they first signed up they were gonna be a weekly customer but i think that lasted 1-2 weeks then they started waiting 2 weeks between cuts.

    always weird requests like "can you come mow at 4pm?" i'm like what? i am done mowing for the day before 4pm. i never went to mow it that late. i usually mow it around 1pm.

    she texts me tonight on friday night asking when i'm coming to mow? i say i can come tuesday or wednesday and i get a text saying "wednesday is no good...i want to be there when you mow please." i text back tuesday? and get no response.

    i'm just like wtf? why does she need to be there when i mow? i've been mowing the yard for 2 years. nothing is gonna change. i will mow it the same way as i have been doing it. i will be mowing and she shows up from work or something in a bad mood like she's mad i started mowing without her being there even though her husband is there in the house. i don't get it. she will start griping about stuff. very nit picky about every little thing. the yard is a biotch too. it's far from perfect. all uneven and stuff yet she wants it to look perfect.

    i've talked to her and she said she could leave a check for me but she has never done it. she has said she will get on a schedule yet has never done it. it's just the same crap over and over. she will not do anything. it's all about her and nothing else.

    i dunno what's going on. it just seems to get worse and worse every time i go there now. many times i've almost gotten into my truck and drove off lately. i'm trying to stick with it until her husband can get back on his feet but she is driving me insane. i don't think i can take it anymore.

    i flat out asked her last week. i sent a text and said " what's going on? do you not want me to mow your yard anymore?" ...then she went on to say "the yard is fine but we aren't." talking about her husband. he's in pain and stuff. yeah i get it but that's no reason to be rude towards me. i told her "things will get better, he will be ok.".....then she texts me tonight. friday night saying " i would have called you today but we had 3 dr. appointments." "when are you coming to mow again?" i said tuesday or wednesday and that's when she said wednesday is no good and that she wants to be there when i mow.

    customer #3 - signs up for bi weekly. i mow it once no problem. time to mow again "let's skip this week"...then the next week rolls around..."it's raining today so we'll have to skip this week too. when i get paid i'll pay you for the whole month of may." so ends up being 4 weeks since i last cut it. i tell him may will have 3 cuts in it and he says "that's fine no problem." i show up and mow grass is a foot tall but i do it and they leave the money and only leave $40 for one cut instead of the $120 promised.

    so far that's it. there's always that handful of bad customers. they make me want to rethink ever getting into this business. i seriously think of quitting when stuff like this happens. i just don't understand people.

    handful of others asking me to mow shorter because all of their lawns are full of clover so it looks shaggy and doesn't last 2 weeks. i'm like well duh. it's not gonna look like a golf coarse after 2 weeks of not being mowed in the spring time. i say you can get your yard sprayed or plant some centipede or something that will choke the weeds out. none of them want to do that of course. it's like they want to be on a budget yet have their lawns look perfect. it's just not possible. i can't make the clover magically disappear by mowing shorter. it will grow right back. they are so "right now" they have no "big picture" mentality. they all want insta-fix instead of a real fix. :dizzy:

    just seems to be a huge red flag when it's a customer's day to be mowed and they want to change it to a different time.
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
    wjjones likes this.
  2. Matthews Lawn Care

    Matthews Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,234

    I would address your issues with the customer. If they will not rectify the situation I’d stop servicing them, if you can afford to do so. If you can’t afford to lose them, try finding a happy medium with them. Anything to make the experience better for you would be worth the effort.
  3. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    customer #4 - wants an estimate. i look on google maps and they are located across the street from another customer so i say roughly $35-$40 a cut. a month goes by i never hear from them. i text back asking if they decided if they want me to mow the yard or not? they ask did i ever look at the yard? i said yeah it will be $40 bi weekly or $35 weekly. they want bi weekly so i do it on the same day as the neighbor. first cut everything goes fine. 2nd cut i'm edging the sidewalk and a pebble flies up and breaks the storm door window shattering it. i leave the check there and text them saying that should cover a replacement so they get a free cut basically. i text them again this week which would be the 3rd cut and she says her ex husband already mowed it. i said ok do you want me to come mow again in 2 weeks? i get no response.
  4. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    i've tried everything. nothing works. i'm probably letting them go. talking to them does no good. it's like they forget what we talked about by the next time i go mow.

    when i asked if they still wanted me to cut the yard they are like "oh yes you do a great job we'd hate to lose you" ....yet she complains every time i go mow? i don't understand it. i go above and beyond for her. i offer a choice of days to get their lawn mowed. i don't do that for anyone else. it's just really weird like i'm living in the twilight zone or something like a curse from hell.

    anyways as you can see this is how you get up to 45 yards and by the time summer time gets here you are down to 35 yards. you can't get ahead in this business. it's a rat race to the bottom.

    i'm at 41 yards right now but i'll be down to 40 if i let this one go and down to 39 if i let the other one go. then 2 houses i mow are for sale so that's 2 more gone down to 37. it's just spirals out of control like that. that's the norm every season here. last year i gained like 7 then lost 7 in the same year. maybe my expectations of people are too high? i dunno i just expect people to act normal and to stay on schedule. obviously i work with people if something comes up but dang something shouldn't come up every single time it's their day for me to mow their lawn.

    it's like you have to go through 10 people just to get 5 good customers. 2 steps forward 1 step back. the lawn business is a tough road to travel that's for sure.
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
  5. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Messages: 9,483

    You sure a storm door window doesn' t cost more than you were cutting it for? They have to pay someone to install it. New customer and you already broke something that they have to get repaired. Maybe ticked them off. Stuff happens...
    I would just get rid of somebody I couldn' t please or get a long with. You will pick up some new ones as the season goes along. Just getting started. I lost 3 from last year. One big one. Not feeling too good about it, but usually get some new ones from referrals
    13Razorbackfan likes this.
  6. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,086

    You been in the biz long enough to know how customers can be. Sounds like You're just frustrated. I stop showing up for those types that I feel don't value what I do and then they will either start calling / texting you a million times cause they know you are good and conform to what you do as a business or they will get someone else.
    13Razorbackfan likes this.
  7. Matthews Lawn Care

    Matthews Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,234

    Sounds like you just need to move to a new area. The only thing that frustrates me is how busy I get. I’m a month out on any new projects and really don’t have any openings for mowing only customers. I have to drop 1 mow only customer today to make room for a full service customer.
  8. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    they didn't tell me it would cost more than that. it can't be that much. a storm window is like $20-$30. it was nothing fancy. heck i could put it in myself if they wanted me to. it was one of those fluke things. that's the first storm window i've broken in 8 years. sometimes it just seems like everything is fighting against you. i wanna say screw it and just stop mowing lawns and get a real job. real jobs are even worse though. i wish there was an easier way to live life. life pretty much sucks.

    i never really get any customers later in the year. if i do it never works out. really the only ones that work out are ones i get in the early spring. the rest of the year i don't want any new customers because it's hot and i want to go home early to get out of the heat. :laugh:
  9. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    that's what drives me up the wall. they wouldn't fire me for anything yet they wanna complain all the time and be so hard to work with. i just don't get it. if they are not satisfied you would think they would just hire someone else. it's like they live for drama or something and don't know how to relax and enjoy life.
    hort101 likes this.
  10. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,920

    mow only customers are really all we have around here. i think i trim shrubs for 1 or 2 people out of 40 that i have and that's only once or twice a year. i did a small mulch job for one person but she passed away during the off season. mowing is pretty much all there is around here. a new area would be nice but then i would have to start all over from scratch with 0 customers. :O

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