picking up sticks

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by lawnrangers, May 29, 2002.

  1. lawnrangers

    lawnrangers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 135

    i have this older lady(mid 60s)good customer for two yrs,until this yr.she has about 10 big oak trees,sticks keep falling,(2-3in.diameter). i started picking them up for my sake&my mower,30 min time weekly.i asked her if she could try to start helping before i showed up,she said no...it was my job, to do it for free....what do i do????:
  2. ohiolawnguy

    ohiolawnguy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 397

    usually, we include the cost of picking up smaller sticks with the mowing price.
    if on the other hand, there is a storm, and lots of debris, then we would charge for the cleanup of the limbs, and branches.

    Most of our customers usually will at least put large branches in a bed, or near garage for us to pickup when we mow.
    anywhere out of the way util we show up to mow.
  3. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    GET RID OF HER! No Money there.
    Johnny G. :cool: :cool:
  4. ADMowing

    ADMowing LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 175

    I agree wholeheartedly! Drop this customer. If she is not willing to pay for your time, then she doesn't deserve to be your customer. We have run into this problem because there are large windstorms in the summer here in Florida. When we do cleanup, we charge for it! $25/hour. Good people DO understand this and are willing to pay for it.
  5. Dennis E.

    Dennis E. LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 349

    Do you have paper(agreement/contract) that says what you will and will not do?
    If you don't you should. It's called CYA.:D
    A few branches are O.K.
    A lot is called a clean-up and you should charge extra.
    I'd say she's milking you for some free clean-up.
  6. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    30 minutes for free. I hope you are making a lot off of her in other ways. If I have a customer like that I will make up the difference in other ways. Spring and fall cleans get a higher than average hourly rate. Fertilizer is higher. If the customer wants me to do those extras then they pay in other ways if they cant see paying up front, otherwise they are not my customers. Either way on average it is no less than a dollar a minute.
  7. lawnrangers

    lawnrangers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 135

    UPDATE!!!!----shes history.... thx for the feedback....
  8. smburgess

    smburgess LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 467

    You need to explain to her that you're a business, not a charity!
    Tell her you'll be charging her for the man-hours needed to police the lawn for the debris and that you would like to give her free service, however you have bills to pay. If she drops you you're not losing anything because you've probally lost your profit in the time spent on removing debris.

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