Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Matts Mowing, May 17, 2006.

  1. Matts Mowing

    Matts Mowing LawnSite Member
    Messages: 53

    This spring I was aerating a customers lawn when the neighbor lady comes over and asks me to give her a mowing bid on her yard. I finish up and walk the property and tell her $35.00. She tells me that we have a deal and to start mowing next week. I ask her who has been cutting it in the past and she tells me that she finds a neighbor boy to mow it whenever she can. She is gone a lot and would like to know the lawn will get done right. Alarm bells went off when she was talking about the neighbor boy and I should have known better but I added her to the schedule. I mow it the next week and she pops her head out and tells me it looks great. Week after I have applied fert the lawn is a lush green and the property really looks good. Once again she tells me how wonderful everything looks and she was happy with my work.
    Two days later I get the letter in the mail with my check telling me she found a neighbor boy to do it.:confused: The first week the neighbor boy breaks her wonderful 21" crapsman and she calls me and tells me I havethe job for good. She does not want to hassle with her mower and the boy any more. Her property is around the corner from another customer so I decided to give it another go and put her back on the schedule.:cry: I have been mowing the lawn the past 2 weeks and she actually calls me to tell me that her neighbor would like my number because her lawn looks so good. Well, I got the call I was expecting all along today. "Matt, I got the mower fixed and little johnny is going to be mowing again for me. It is good to let these kids mow you know":dizzy: I knew it was coming but still could not believe it. The good thing is that this lawn is a good sized yard and that little crapsmen will make it about a month with little Johnny before it is in the shop again or he is too busy playing his XBOX. I am betting I get a call by the 2nd week of June asking me to start mowing again. I have been mulling over my response and here is my options.

    A) Sure I will be right on it ( and never show up )

    B) Sure I will be right over

    C) Take that mower and shove it up your arse.

    D) Sure but the mowing rate will now be 50.00 and I will need 2 months pre paid. Daddy needs a new XBOX:laugh:

    I think I will choose D.....
  2. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    Either D or write up a contract.

    These people are true pains in the a@#. I would explain my side one last time to her. The roller coaster of yes and no doesn't work for me. Either I mow for you or we part ways.
  3. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,085

    I usually just leave it be. Since you are already over there, if she calls she calls, it not - don't worry about it. If it were the only one over there, then I'd be a little more aggrivated.
  4. Tn Lawn Man

    Tn Lawn Man LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 479

    Even though it is close to another account the billing would drive me crazy.

    Also, scheduling is a pain too. What happens when you get one of those crazy rain days and you have to not mows some lawns. She will probably get mowed because she is next to another client while good clients that aren't as close will get skipped.

    I hate dealing with wafflers.

    Hey, let us know if she calls back.
  5. CutInEdge Lawn Care

    CutInEdge Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 677

    D is possibly the best coarse of action. You are giving her a one time cut price and that is how she needs to be priced, until she is ready to commit to a longterm schedule.
  6. newz7151

    newz7151 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Tejas
    Messages: 2,419

    If you are mowing without a contract with a hefty enforceable cancellation fee, then you may as well be "little Johnny" yourself. And I don't intend that to sound mean or belittling, but that's the way a real service business that is traditionally based on weekly or regular service is supposed to operate.
  7. Surf'n'Turf

    Surf'n'Turf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    Tell her to make sure her home owners insurance is paid up.....could spell big trouble for her when little Johnny takes out her window or cuts off an appendage while working on her property.
  8. lawnwizards

    lawnwizards LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,439

    you know, i'm convinced that most customers don't give a rats behind whether their "little johnny" has insurance or not. most will take the chance if they can save a nickel. sad but true.
  9. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Messages: 8,513

    I don't see what the problem is? I sub for people all the time. So what if you don't get to mow it all the time. Sometime is better than no time. AS long as she doesn't let it get high and as long as she pays you on time and as long as it is close by. A 35$ yard can't take that long. But if you don't need the money...
  10. lawnwizards

    lawnwizards LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,439

    i think its the whole pita hassle. you know, show up one week and its already been mowed.. kinda gets annoying after a while. plus you can't manicure it to you liking if "little johnny" keeps f'ing everything up.

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