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Dont let customers mix personal and business!!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by fitzg2md, Sep 7, 2007.

  1. fitzg2md

    fitzg2md LawnSite Member
    Messages: 156

    Slight Rant ahead!

    I have had an account all year for a commercial account. Good 1 day 15 acre apartment complex. Good relationship with the manager. Good relationship with the owner of the prop. Well...part owner. After 4 months with great service on this account I get a call from the owner asking if I could do some work on her persoanal property. I meet her and get a feel for what needs to be done. basically its a 1 acre formal garden with HUGE mature boxwoods etc. Except it hasnt been cared for in nearly 10 years...Completely overgrown and full of crap. Basically, gonna be lots of work. She doesnt want it restored to all its glory, just trim it all down and make it halfway "presentable". I explained exactly what this would entail and that it will still look like crap, just shorter more managable crap. She understood, we signed a contract and work was done.

    Over the next couple weeks I keep getting calls from her that the job is not finished. She has paid me already for it. I humor her and bend over backwards and do a few small extras...but make it known that this is a favor and that the job IS finished. A month goes by and I get a call from her all pissed that the garden looks like crap again. I explain that plants and grass do infact grow (many many inches of rain) and that is to be expected. i explained (as I had before) that this will require continuous upkeep. She is greatly troubled that simply trimming bushes and whatnot dont make it forever kept.

    Sooo....I get a call today from the manager of the commercial property saying , "Hi mike, the owner just told me to call you to tell you we have found someone else to maintain the apartments. She also said that the invoice that you sent (1500.00...work has already been completed at the apartment complex) will be paid to you when you finish her personal property."!!!!

    i call the owner very concerned that she is confussing two different contracts. I called to work this out, not yell...but I was threw putting up with her crap. She doesnt pickup, and has yet to call me back. In the past she has always returned my call within the hour. Ive called twice since...no answer. I do have a contract for the commercial property. One clause covers cancellation and the way to go about (30 days notice in writing).

    I just couldnt believe the kahunas on this woman! I think she needs to take a business law course...maybe then she will realize that should I sue for the money owed my company, I can not only sue for amount owed, but for breach of contract! And I dont think the judge is gonna give a rats a$$ if her personal house is sufficiently finished or not.

    Nicest little old lady too...never wold expect it. What a bi*&h!!
  2. crab

    crab LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 633

    good luck never trust anyone who claims they have lots of work,file a law suit f@#%^$* here move on!:cry:
  3. Americal Vet

    Americal Vet LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    Did you use a hoe at her place? Well I guess not I guess one already owned the place:laugh:

    Seriously, I feel for you. It is a royal pain to take someone to court. Too bad you didn't have before and after photos of your work. I take a photo of each one of my jobs and store them on a disk just in case. Never had to use one yet but one never knows. Good luck with this one.
  4. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,447

    In the real world these people expect you to take care of their property and not charge or to include it in the price of the apartment.....happens all the time and present an ethical situation....I believe it is called "kickback" in the old day. Might be a interesting thread to see what most people would do...how big a contract?
  5. fitzg2md

    fitzg2md LawnSite Member
    Messages: 156

    well, its 2 seperate signed contracts...one with the apartment complex and one with her personally. However, she is withholding money owed to me by the apartment complex due to a problem with her own personal house...they are different signed contracts that have NOTHING to due with each other (at least by the terms of law). Shes not even the only owner of the apartments...just one of many. Its like saying that you wont pay the mechanic who repaired your car because his brother owes you 50 bucks...just has nothing to do with the reality of the situation.
  6. huntw11871

    huntw11871 LawnSite Member
    from NC
    Messages: 71

    Like another guy said take pics of your new jobs. I do it as well. What I do is print it out on my picture mate 4x6 printer and put it in a new folder. So I have the job paper work and pics of yard at first and after the job was done. Pics or not you don't do that S$$$ to people. She has to pay you for both of the jobs,but in 30 days she would get finally notice and then it would get ugly! Sorry to hear it but it will work out in the end.
  7. mattfromNY

    mattfromNY LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Central NY
    Messages: 1,582

    Are the other owners of the apartment complex aware of why you are being 'fired'?. I would try to contact them and find out if they think you are doing a satisfactory job at the complex, and if so, let them know the situation and the possibility of a court case.

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