It really gets to me.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by howardsells2000, May 3, 2007.

  1. howardsells2000

    howardsells2000 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 355

    I just got a call from a customer that has a rental property that I cut the grass for. He has me cut it every two weeks. He received his bill for cutting last month and happens to drive by the property this evening and thinks that the grass couldn't have been cut on the 4/26/07 because the grass is already high. I tried to explain that it's spring time and the grass is growing like crazy and thats why I should be cutting it every week. He is basically calling me a liar. He doesn't know if he is going to pay the bill or not. Then he tries to intimidate me by telling me he is a police detective. It's not a lot of money and there is no way I will ever cut his grass again, even if he pays me.

    Earlier today another customer called me about her bill. She has a town house and when I tried to cut her back yard I couldn't because she had the gate locked. I walked around to her front door and knocked and asked her to unlock the gate. She said she wasn't dressed to go outside and for me not to cut the back. I said ok, well when she got her bill she thinks that the cut that day should be half price since I didn't cut the back. I told her that her price is the price. If I can't cut the back because she doesn't want to open the gate, the price doesn't change. Her price is what it is. So we will see how much she sends me. I'm supposed to cut her grass again tomorrow.

    This is my second year in the business and this hasn't happened to me before. I've had billing issues before but this really pisses me off. It shouldn't but for some reason it really bothers me. Well I'm just venting. Tomorrow will be another day.

  2. howardsells2000

    howardsells2000 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 355

    While I was typing this the customer that said he can't believe I cut his grass just called me back and left me a message asking if I could maybe cut his grass shorter since it's growing so fast. He also asked me to give him a price to trim some bushes. I can't believe it, He basically calls me a liar then acts like nothing happened and wants me to do some more work for him. I'm finished with him. Well I'm still just venting.
  3. CoreyD

    CoreyD LawnSite Member
    Messages: 207

    id stay with him lol
  4. CkLandscapingOrlando

    CkLandscapingOrlando LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 652

    Use this to up sell him or raise your price.Since he now knows how much stress your mower and blades have to go through.If he dont like itleave.Your the pro and some cheap ass has no right to tell you your job when its his fault he has the problems
  5. ptlawnguy

    ptlawnguy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 33

    What happens when you cut that undressed lady's grass next time and it takes longer cuz its high? If she didnt pay for it when you didnt cut it you should deffinetly bill her more for the next time since it will be twice as high.
  6. DoetschOutdoor

    DoetschOutdoor LawnSite Bronze Member
    from S. IL
    Messages: 1,818

    For me, theres only one way to make good out of this....explain to him that the grass needs to be cut once a week or else you are gone/you are raising his price. Explain to him again how fast everything is growing and then upsell the bushes trimming and maybe some mulch. He'll either come to his senses or you will not have to deal with him.
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Ahhh so we already have an agreement and now the customer doesn't like it?
    Ok, be diplomatic and all, but beyond that not much you can do, it's your way or no way, right?
    Not my way = full schedule or raise the price.

    Customer lawns are cut according to my schedule.
    If my schedule does not suit them (i.e.: but my lawn only every 2 weeks) that's automatic +$5 for being on call vs. scheduled, then if I have to cut it past a double cut, it's +$5 for every pass beyond two per 1/4 acre (oh I so like this method).

    Come to think of it, I just found one on my list this might apply to.
    Situation: Couldn't cut it when I went out a few days ago, customer argued, basically said no, not now, 2 more days.
    Ok, but then it rained all the past 2 days, see?
    So, next stop +$5 for being on call.
    My standard cut is a double cut, that much is same as normal price, I double cut all my lawns.
    It's a 3/4 acre lot, but every pass I make past the second = +$5 x 1/4 acre = +$15 per pass.
    Might get a shock when they see that $65- $80 bill, but one way or the other the problem is fixed.

    Not paying, no problem, one account to go to a 30-55-65 day collections cycle.

    Yup that's what I would do, bill nicely this time, then bill the next one accordingly.
  8. HBLandscaping

    HBLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 268

    Howardsells2000.....Welcome to Lawn care in Maryland LOL. This area seems to be worse then other places when it comes to these types of people.(Yes I know every place has them to) I've been in business for 5 yrs now and been in this line of work for 15 yrs and every year I see more and more of these clients. My advise is deal with them the best you can, try and explain to the client your reason(s) for the way the bill is or your service works, Dont be scared to tell them how it is (But be polite) and dont be scared to walk away from a client if and agrement cant be worked out, there is always another client right down the street.
  9. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,587

    dont do bi weekly cuts, they are cheapskates and wil always nickle and dime you to death..... weekly cuts only and raise your prices.... weed out the rif raf.....many of my customers get cut every four days......
  10. PatriotLandscape

    PatriotLandscape LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MA
    Messages: 1,209

    No wonder you have issues with your clients you treat them like garbage.

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