Has this ever happened to you?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Shawns Lawns, May 2, 2005.

  1. Shawns Lawns

    Shawns Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 638

    I have a customer that i do some work for they just came back this past weekend from St. Petersburg Florida. They go every year, anyway i called her up before she came home and asked her if she wanted me to clean up her yard because the neighbors cut a tree and left the branches in her yard. Also other debris that came down and got blown around winter. She was not happy about the situation since she did not hire me to clean up in the fall (she says i was to much) and hired someone else and now would have to pay again. She told me to do what i had to do so i did it. Went to collect and she wanted me to collect half from her neighbor who left the branches in her yard I about flipped. I just stared at her and then she said well i will pay you and then get the rest from him. After all that i went up on her mowing charge. :)
  2. Mo Green

    Mo Green LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,487

    She is responsible for paying you, not her neighbor. Some people....... :dizzy:
  3. Shawns Lawns

    Shawns Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 638

    Thats what i thought
  4. lawnranger44

    lawnranger44 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 370

    I agree she is not responsible. If she really wants her neighbor to cover part of the charge, she needs to take it up with him/her personally. Its not your responsiblity to collect from the neighbor!
  5. Cut

    Cut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 133

    I clean brush up for this one lady, really nice looking chick. I told her $300 and she got mad and said that stupid lazy neighbor of hers wont do anything to help with the storm cleanup. It is same situation. The tree balances on between two lots. But it is on the nieghbors side of the fence. most of the limbs were from his tree.

    She says, "$300? Huh? Ok go ahead and clean it up, and I will pay you"
    I get'r done and she pays me. But now all of a sudden she was in a better mood. She said everything is going to be fine cause she is going to send her nieghbor a bill for $300 for the brush cleanup that fell from his tree.

    I bit my lip as I tell her, "yeah, courts probably make him pay if he dont do it willingly". But that will never happen.
    She is not one of my mowing clients, just a call for brush clean-up.
    I guess with her thinking that she may get her money back, made me feel better about hauling that one pickup load of brush away in a half hour for $300! I overbidded, thinking it would take longer and two-three loads.

    But I got lucky on that one.

    The moral of the story is, when it falls on your yard, its your responsibility, regardless were it fell from.
  6. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    I hear some of the craziest stories here on Lawnsite. Not that this is all that crazy, but I hardly ever have problems like this with customers. I always read lots of posts like this where the client refused to pay, wanted to pay less after the job was already done, etc. I honestly hardly ever get that kind of stuff. 99.5% of the time, if we do what we say we'd do, we get to the end of the job and the customer kindly hands over a check. Maybe it's because we work in a fairly affluent area, I don't know. But it's funny. I almost never get stuff like that anymore.
  7. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,547

    So you used to then?
  8. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    Yah, back when I first started I did. Part of it was the class of customer I was dealing with back then. When I first started, the only way I knew of to advertise was the newspaper classifieds. It took me a few years to realize that was one of the worst kinds of advertising - mostly because of the kind of clientele it attracted. Sometimes I got some well-off, good paying customers. But most often I got either penny pinchers or people who wanted to rip me off or pay very very late. Once I learned that I could specifically target my customers (e.g. signs in neighborhoods where I wanted more business, flyers, etc.) then I quickly learned how to upgrade my clientele. Ever since, we don't get those kind of problems, really.
  9. Shuter

    Shuter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,171

    Jim, I agree with what you are saying. When I first started, I took any anyone and anything. And as you say the class of people are different. Now I can pick and choose. Most of my customers now are in homes from $600,000 and up. But I still have one in a $750,000 house that complains about the price all the time. He is always comparing me and two others for prices. The three of us play his game and talk to each other and give him the same prices.
  10. lwallace

    lwallace LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    How long have you been in the business and how many lawns do you cut. How many days a week do you cut?

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