left a big rutt in customers lawn

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by kalyeah, Aug 7, 2004.

  1. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Ok, here we go. I've been cutting this customers lawn all year with no problem. Next door neighbor(there is a privacy fence between the two) just had a built in pool installed. I've never had trouble with this lawn even when it rained a lot in the spring. Now I think when they poured the concrete next door they also used a lot of water for clean up etc. Well, you guessed it. First pass down the backyard and I started sinking and spinning tires before I realized knew what was going on. It's not terribly bad, but I need advise. I don't really view this as being my fault due to all the water coming from next door. However, I'm willing to patch it since it's not a huge area. Should I go get a couple strips of sod now. Or should I go smooth it out and lay some seed down in about another month. Not sure if this guy will keep it watered either way. Anyways, let me know how you would handle this situation. Thanks in advance,
  2. CamLand

    CamLand LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,299

    How wouldn't this be your fault? if you dig up the yard with your machines then you fix it...
  3. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Look, I'm planning on fixing it. Just wanted to know if you would put down sod now. Or, would you smooth it out now, and seed it in a month or so. Still say it's not my fault. All the water has run from next door. And I honestly think that if this was an area that held water I would have noticed it before August.

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    If he's never had a problem with that areas before, how would he know that that was gonna happen? Still, it never hurts to patch things up. I usually wait a few weeks to see what happens. I would just try to smooth it out for now, unless the customers going to water, I wouldn't bother with seed or sod until the fall.
  5. SouthernFried

    SouthernFried LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 273

    I find its always easier to smooth it out when it's still wet. If it is...go and pat and smooth in the ruts with the mud. Sometimes it's so wet you can even slide or move peices of sod back into place.

    After it dries, then determine if you need to add some sod/seed.
  6. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Thanks Hoolie, that's pretty much what I was thinking. Trust me I've got other customers who have places like that every time it rains. This isn't one of them. Thanks again.
  7. Tider6972

    Tider6972 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Alabama
    Messages: 649

    kalyeah, I think I would make the home owner aware of this problem mui pronto !
    (That's pretty damn quick for you gringos) ...'cuz this just could be a signal that the neighbor has, by installing a pool, changed the drainage...and more problems could follow.

    The pool/neighbor are liable if they have made changes which cause your client problems (in Florida and Alabama, for sure).
  8. Tonyr

    Tonyr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,973

    patch it up best you can...even just fill in the ruts with top soil for now until you seed or grass takes over, as long as you smooth it out the client should be understanding...
  9. geogunn

    geogunn LawnSite Gold Member
    from TN
    Messages: 3,010

    smooth it out, seed it NOW.

    tell the owner if he doesn't want to keep it watered, that he should have the neighbor do it.

    if things are like you say, you are not responsible for this one.

    an alternative to my suggestion is to sod it and bill the owner.

    tell him that next time you need to be warned of such conditions as you don't have time to fix other peoples mistakes for free.

  10. CapnDean

    CapnDean LawnSite Member
    Messages: 80

    I'd go straight to the homeowner and say:

    #1 Oops...I accidentally rutted your yard, I will smooth it out and fill the ruts right away.

    #2 Your yard has never held water before...I wonder if your neighbors pool construction has rerouted the natural drainage.

    #3 Next time I mow, I will check it for you, if it's holding water you may want to look into correcting your new drainage problem.

    This way; You fess up to what you did which is noble and the proper thing to do. (It's very understandable what happened and doesn't reflect poorly on you).
    Second; it alerts the homeowner to the potential drainage issue that his neighbor may have unwittingly caused. I am sure your customer knows where his yard holds water and where it does not.
    Third it shows that you care and are professional enough to want him to be satisfied with you and your service.

    Were I the customer, I would probably ask you to leave the ruts for the time being so that I could show the problem to my neighbor. Ya know, sometimes things like this just happen and good neighbors can iron it out. Given the proper opportunity.

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