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customer wants us to use rakes only?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by peahlybros., May 2, 2011.

  1. peahlybros.

    peahlybros. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 115

    Hey guys,

    wondering what you would do in this situation. I have a customer, not a regular, that called today asking if we would do a spring cleanup. It is a very shady property, with newly seeded lawn last year, and he did not have a fall clean up done, so needless to say the property looks like hell. He now wants us to do a cleanup but with rakes only because he believes it is healthier for the lawn.

    Have you ever been requested to do this? What would you tell him, or would you do the job as he requests? The way I would do it is clear the leaves with blowers then dethatch with a dethatcher if it is thatch he is worried about.

    P.S. I have not personally spoke with the customer yet, so I do not know all of the details and his reasoning.
  2. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,142

    I wouldn't get the job. I would honor his request and tell him 45 dollars a man hour. We will spend a week here if thats what you want sir. Most people that call you and tell you how to do your job are not the people you want to work for. Go Bruins
  3. vencops

    vencops LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,537

    Hrs. worked X hourly rate......and I'll use a fork if he wants.
  4. Darryl G

    Darryl G Inactive
    Messages: 9,500

    If they insisted on rakes, I'd probably turn it down simply because I'm solo at this time of the year, my right shoulder already hurts from the raking, dragging, lifting and hauling I've had to do and I hate using rakes.

    But it sounds to me like the customer is telling the contractor how to do something. The way I see it, it's up to the customer to communicate what it is they want done. It's up to the contractor to do it in a professional manner with the tools of his trade he/she feels are most efficieint and appropriate. Rakes disturb the soil a hell of a lot more than blowers and I think blowers would be more gentle on a tender new lawn.

    And I must say....what the hell...they plant a new lawn and then skip the fall cleanup....no wonder they needed a new lawn to begin with.
  5. TurnerLawn&Landscape

    TurnerLawn&Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 127

    Tell him how you are experienced in this industry and explain to him thoroughly why you do certain jobs the way you do. If you have enough time on your hands to spend a whole week raking one yard i might go ahead and do it that way, but there arent enough hours in the day for me this time of year!
  6. peahlybros.

    peahlybros. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 115

    Yea I know.... I swear some people just have no clue.... the grass is pretty much toast at this point... between the shade and lack of maintenance. :hammerhead:

    And I was thinking the same thing that rakes would do more damage than good. And we are starting to fall behind with cleanups as it is... But at this point if he wants to pay $45/hr I'll use what ever he wants hahaha... When I talk with him I will explain how the rakes are not recommended and go from there.

    thanks again
  7. grassman88

    grassman88 LawnSite Member
    from mass
    Messages: 218

    i would go and talk to him in person and explain the way you want to do it and if he doesnt like it then walk away from that job thank him for contacting you and say i dont have time to rake a whole property
  8. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    I would explain to him the time involved raking the whole yard and the hourly rate to do it. If he still wants to pay out that cost compared to vacuuming or blowing it out then ok, If not say thank you and move on.
  9. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Newly seeded lawn that he left the leaves on all winter and now he wants to rip out any grass that may have survived with a rake... The guy's an idiot, and I don't work for idiots, because they always ruin your reputation...
  10. ron mexico75

    ron mexico75 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,993

    You can tell him 2 things;

    -The only rake you'll be using is the one to rake in all the extra cash he will be paying if you can't use blowers.

    -The other rake will be the one you use to rake his A$$ over the coals if he tells you how to do the work once you already start it. :laugh:

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