Needy customers

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by nortonlawncare, May 9, 2013.

  1. nortonlawncare

    nortonlawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 307

    I have these customers that have to be home when I'm there and they have to help out. They are old, and nice but it messes me up and slows me way down. They keep adding stuff on when I'm there. I think they have the impression. That I only do their house? I have tried to explain to them that I can give them a block of time on fixed days, but they refuse to commit to any days that they are not around.
    Anyone have any ideas for me to make this work?
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  2. Caddyshack Lawn Care

    Caddyshack Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 748

    I solve that by explaining that I'm running behind and ask what day/time they'd like me to schedule them in for the side work. 99% of the time they opt to do it themselves.
  3. nortonlawncare

    nortonlawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 307

    I tried to get them in a solid time and I was going there today. She called me at 6 am to tell me not to come because she wasn't going to be home, and to come tomorrow. They pay really well but I need to get them off of the boy next door they are used to.
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  4. B-2 Lawncare

    B-2 Lawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 263

    I have been here my self and its best to just tell it to them straight. You would be surprised how well people respond. Don't be a dick about it but hold your ground. And you might make them mad and if they don't understand then that's on them.
  5. nortonlawncare

    nortonlawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 307

    I guess I should be more firm in setting dates and times with them. I've only lost my cool once in 8 years and that was this winter at a threat for lawsuit.
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  6. pseudosun

    pseudosun LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,739

    heh heh. what about sweeping when i haven't edged yet. They are working up a sweat with that broom sweeping that carport out, and tell themselves "now, that looks good!" Then, here i come with the trimmer and all their work is ruined. They look at me as if to say "What The Hayl". All it takes is a quick blow lady. I realize they're bored , so sometimes, i let them work.
  7. grassmonkey0311

    grassmonkey0311 LawnSite Gold Member
    from MD/NC
    Messages: 3,051

    Just let them know you have a busy schedule and tell them how your going to do it. If they don't like it, they can move on and so can you.

    I have a customer who does this....he wants side jobs here and there. But I can only do them when he's home. I always tell him when I'm free and when I can do them. If he doesn't like it, he can hire someone else. But I refuse to start on his "wish list" at 7pm.

    Some customers who are unrealistc need to be handled by another company.
  8. Blade Runners

    Blade Runners LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,021

    The first problem is letting them call you and dictate the date and time they want their lawn done. This is the first thing I would stop. The more you let them get away with, the more they are going to push. You just have to let them know you are busy and have a schedule to maintain and that schedule includes more than them. Of course do it in a tactful but firm way.
  9. K & K Mowing

    K & K Mowing LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Boy, I've been down this road. Likely that they will be expecting you to do whatever they want done for the time that your there with them for the same money. As stated above, politely stand your ground on this and make it clear what will be extra. My guess is once you do this they will not be out there trying to get you to do addtional work if it's going to cost them extra. But I've been wrong before. My two cents.

    Regards, Kevin:usflag::drinkup:
  10. Woody82986

    Woody82986 LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 2,128

    They would have to be paying EXTREMELY well for me to put up with that kind of stuff. Like 10x what the normal price would be. Otherwise, they can either get cut where it fits into the schedule or they can start contacting other companies. I try to be as nice and as understanding as possible but not even my wife dictates what the weekly work schedule looks like. There just comes a point where this type of thing goes from acceptable to just not possible given your growth and it sounds like you are just about there.

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