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Late paying customer...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by sandy creek, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. sandy creek

    sandy creek LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    I got a small condo building and they had fallen way back on thier payments. When Dec. 31 got here and I still had not recieved Nov. check I quit cutting and started trying to get someone on the phone. After several failed attempts and me leaving messages with no returned calls a check shows up in the mail paying for Nov. Problem is its Jan. 19th and thier Dec bill is due now but they didn't send that money. In the 3 years I've been in business for myself doing this I suprisingly have never had this situation. How would you handle it? Still not cut until they are current, try to make contact by phone again? Any suggestions are well recieved.
  2. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    I would start with a certified letter explaining the situation.
  3. jonathanone

    jonathanone LawnSite Member
    from Ct
    Messages: 122

    If you dropped the account how many others would be standing in line to pick it up, at least a dozen I bet AND nearly all would be firefighters who can -afford- to wait; the sad fact is that the slow dollars are still better than no dollars, alot better. And, if you are only waiting 60-90 days you are really doing pretty good . Boys : hang on to your shorts because we ain't seen nuttin yet.
  4. Hook and Ladder

    Hook and Ladder LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    Yep I would be one of those firefighters (dirtbags)- here is what you do because I have run across this several times already and it can be a burden.

    Certified letter explaining nice/tactfully that the bill is over-due and you could even throw in here the new year is here and you are wrapping up your taxes. Depending how much they owe you - another route would be a small claims court after the certified letter and numerous attempts. Just remember document all conversations and attempts to make contact. Did you have them sign any contracts or was this word of mouth. Verbal contracts are binding as well as I am assuming this is a monthly mow/blow/go deal. Someone mentioned having the worry of another company sliding in. What it is worth to you? The headaches and feeling of working for free OR letting it go for someone else to deal with-

    Good luck and welcome to being a contractor
  5. jonathanone

    jonathanone LawnSite Member
    from Ct
    Messages: 122

    Not a dirtbag by anymeans brother, but if seconds matter why don't you sit in the truck and wait for the alarm to go off-rather than tuck in for the night, get yourself all refreshed and then go out and take work from those who don't do this for a hobby.
    Serious queston.
  6. gasracer

    gasracer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,049

    That did not have anything to do with the original post or did I miss something?*trucewhiteflag*
  7. Hook and Ladder

    Hook and Ladder LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    I didn't realize working year round landscaping on my off days was a hobby. If that's the case someone get me a ball peen hammer and beat me in the head with it- I will try another new hobby.
  8. yardguy28

    yardguy28 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,463

    i personally would make a phone call or send a letter and keep there service suspended until the issue is resolved.

    dropping accounts is not an option in my business unless absolutely necessary.
  9. Mountain Peak

    Mountain Peak LawnSite Member
    Messages: 203

    Is there an office you can go to? A property management office or something? Where does the check come from?
    I had a HOA do this a few years ago, couldn't get a straight answer from anyone. I finally stopped service and got a hold of their accountant. Turns out they were out of money and had to go ask the subdivision for more money.
    A new property management company took over and they asked me to stay, I said no and moved on, after I received my check for payment in full.
    It was a good lesson on chasing money.
  10. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,220

    trying to do this part time, you will have incounters like this.
    People " Customers " will find out that your NOT a Businessman, and that your NOT set up to deal with REAL WORLD issues, in Business.

    expect to get screwed and screwed offten, it's Companys like you that make it hard on all of us.

    Personaly I would revied my Contract, then send out late notices, then have them in court.
    Your Accountaint can do this with no problem.

    If you havent noticed some of us dont like it that your out there taking food from our children's mouth.
    GO back to fighting fires and leave us alone

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