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How would you deal with this customer

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by shovelracer, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. shovelracer

    shovelracer LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,008

    So there is a potential full service client that Ive been dealing with lately. She's been hehawing around for over a month with her contract. Not even sure I want to deal with her anymore anyways. So the soil temps are over 50 degrees and she wants her PreM treatment but I wont schedule till I have paper in hand so it wouldnt be till next week. Ive explained that it wont be as effective and she may still get crabgrass. Furthermore this would push back all her further treatments and create problems later in the year with that. So first question is what do you do about this? I say shes beat. Next her last company insisted that she get her grub treatment in April. Well she has had grubs and doesnt understand why. Ive explained it is too early but she wants the treatment now and then later. This would probably put her over her allowable yearly amount, and Ive tried to explain why its too early. I say shes beat again. Well my thoughts are to tell her she will just have to deal with the crabgrass and start with treatment 2. Start planning earlier next year. Lawn is irrigated and mowed weekly and house is for sale so she will be Florida's problem soon anyways. As far as my other services, she requested friday which was available a month ago, but now I can only squeeze her in early in the week. I already know if she's around in the fall that her leaf cleanup price will be an issue. I dont have a good gut fealing about her.
  2. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,751

    Read your post, if you haven't convinced yourself to walk away from a potentially short term PITA customer then read your post again.
  3. Rayholio

    Rayholio LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,461

    This customer will be a problem from the day you met her til the day you fire her, or she quits because she knows more than you..

    The only way to save this situation is to stop answering her calls, and forget about her.
  4. shovelracer

    shovelracer LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,008

    Avoiding will be hard, cause I also have a full service customer across the road. I know I need to walk, I just have to tell her that she waited to long. Not too far from the truth. She may get mad, but at least Im the better about it.
  5. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,717

    Go for it. Pre-emergent. Charge her accordingly--if she costs you extra time or extra trips--explain you bill for all your time. Dollar a minute-whatever you do. If she wants two grub controls--do it. First one is Sevin, second is Merit. Explain that her next treatment will be timed with your regular route in her neighborhood--it will happen a little early. Future treatments and work done and timed with your regular route.
  6. humble1

    humble1 LawnSite Silver Member
    from MA
    Messages: 2,519

    Tell her she lost her window of oppourtunity to do the job properly, and that you only do jobs properly so she should plan earlier next year.. Or you could tell her you have had some product price increases and will have to requote the job, charge more and bring the contract to her. I had a woman that was telling me how I should apply tick control product, i sometimes hate the internet, it gives homeowners too much info sometimes:hammerhead:
  7. tlg

    tlg LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    Trust your gut. Run and never look back. If it looks like a duck it's a duck!:walking:
  8. JeffW0011

    JeffW0011 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 182

    you already know the answer to this. I know it can be hard, but you will be kicking yourself in the keister all summer is you get involved with this broad. I had to let a guy go today and it sucks....this guy was the biggest PITA last year that you could imagine, everything, sounds a lot like this chick. I honored my agreement with him last year as much as I wanted to walk away. I sent him a letter in Feb that basically was a professional blow off....Changing my business model, tightinening routes dadada. He called me up then whining about it...I though dude....all you did last year was ***** about everything anyway why would you even want me again. answer: probably the only guy that ever stuck it out a full year. Anyway, after telling him I really could no longer afford to service his neighborhood, he caught me out working today a few streets over and actually got out and started raising a little hell with me. He nearly begged me to "give this thing another shot" acting like some ex girlfriend you broke up with or something. I have a hard time saying no but then I realized that if I agreed to work him back in it would have been the sos for another season. I stuck to my guns and just told him it was not the right situation for me.....then I gave him my buddies card and said this guy might be interested....laughed my ass off all the way home.
  9. mngrassguy

    mngrassguy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,167

    I never walk away from money. I would keep increasing the price (like humble1 said) and let her "walk away".
  10. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,369

    Along with the others, I think you should walk away from this customer and just let her know that she waited too long because your schedule is full now !!

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