pita customer- beware long wind

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by jbturf, May 29, 2008.

  1. jbturf

    jbturf LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,503

    so ive got this local landscaper(unlicensed)
    who many years ago used to do his own lawn
    treatments on his accts, until he got cited a couple
    times by the state pesticide bur.--so after using a
    couple other co's started using me about 4-5 yrs ago

    so anyway, he has me do only the pesticide apps
    and he just ferts himself with this awful ac ag fert

    someyears he skips the grub treatments(i believe he still
    charges his customers and pockets the $$)
    some years he has me do 1 app others 3 apps

    so he has me do all the expensive apps and busts my balls on
    pricing and he eats the gravey apps

    so yesterday he has me do a free svc call on one of his properties,
    says he has browing spots and insists he has an insect problem

    so i show up and find no insects or insect damage, at worst the lawn
    looked a little dry in the open sunny areas, and perhaps had a slight
    minor hint of dollar spot showing up in a couple spots-so i report my
    findings to him , and just suggest getting the irrigation system going
    and doing a fert in the near future(its been 5 1/2 weeks since last fert)

    he insistes he wants the insects treated and fungicide applied and
    says hes gonna hold me responisble for the lawn.

    i have 8 regular customers on this very road, which i do all the treatments,
    apps, seeding etc.. for --that look excellent right now, then the landscapers
    2 lawns on this street, which pale in comparison to most others.

    i was gonna tell the guy to f himself- but he owes me over 1k and i know i
    would not get paid.
    any of you deal with bs like this?
    would you dump this clown as soon as he pays?
  2. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,956

    Hi Josh.....I'd dump him a.s.a.p. You don't need him. Seems like a cheezy used car dealer type. Probably talks b.s. pretty well, so that's why he has held on to the few customers he still has. Also, I doubt it's dollar spot yet -- most likely some drought/heat stress issue. Not much for I & D probs in the upper Midwest just yet, so he's probably trying to shove off crap onto you. Clay soil lawns can quickly reveal drought/heat stress areas -- especially if they are mowing less than 3 inches (symptoms usually stop at the property line).

    I'd tell him to pay what he owes you. Then tell him you will diagnose the problem. As soon as he pays his bills, DUMP him!
  3. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    I agree. Dump him as soon as you get paid.

    I have contractors that give me spray only's, 3 apps, 4 apps, 5 apps. and 6 apps BUT they do the same thing every year. I would not deal with a guy that changes the program every year. Too hard to schedule from year to year.

    And yes, he absolutely bills for the insect apps that he tells you not to do and I gurantee if something goes wrong with anything at any time it's your arse that he throws under the bus.
  4. tlg

    tlg LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    Run Away from this idiot. Billing for a service that you do not do ( the insect apps) and using the U.S. mail to collect is a federal offense. Mail fraud. Why would you ever put yourself at risk. Run and never look back.

    LIBERTYLANDSCAPING LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 1,283

    Do as little as possible for him, get your money & dump him! I know the "lawn boy" type you're describing. Get out while you still can!

    I'm seeing first necrotic ring spot of the year here in Northern Indiana. (sodded lawns):hammerhead: Wet Spring, but been dry lately.

  6. txgrassguy

    txgrassguy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,083

    Simple, don't rinse out your tank from the last insecticide app, go to this property and spray with the understanding you won't unless the outstanding bill is paid in full first.
    Cage it anyway you want, "hey I need the money for product, gas, crack, whatever..."
    Then shoot the yard with the weak ratio then don't do anything for him again.
    Remember, the label indicates maximum rates - nothing says you can't "spoon" feed a little.
    I don't know what the reporting laws are in your state so if you don't have to have a uniform on but have to have numbers on your truck just dirty them up a bit with some soil first.
    Or just go to your local tavern, hire two guys for beer money to beat the snot out of this dipwad and don't work for him again. Have the two thugs tell him they will return unless he pays in full.
  7. humble1

    humble1 LawnSite Silver Member
    from MA
    Messages: 2,519

    Hard lesson learned on your end, i feel for you. Are you talking about snow mold, or dead spot from dog piss? I either do a full program or i dont do one, i just walked from a $695 x 3 tick control job, the guy wanted to cut out my granular and only pay400.00 i said sorry i either do it my way or i dont do it
  8. ted putnam

    ted putnam LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,750

    I've never been stiffed for that much money from one individual and I've never had anyone charge for apps like I did them and collect money...that's BS, besides being against the law. When I first started I had a couple mow guys call me wanting estimates for all there customers...about 30. I got excited thinking...cool..I'm about to get a nice little boost...NOT! I ran all over Hell's half acre measuring properties, doing all the leg work for those Punk's so they could get their bids in. NEVER AGAIN. I still get calls. I tell them to give their customer my name and number and have them give me a call. I deal with property/business owners only. I don't let some twit collect money in my name or for me to be paid later...maybe...if they get around to it. I also don't go on wild goose chases. I prefer to skip the middleman. This policy has probably cost me a handful of accounts, but it's saved me mass quantities of grief and headache.
  9. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,135

    I work the exact same way. I do not do partial programs. Especially on lawns. I am much more flexible if I am treating trees and shrubs. Otherwise it is all or nothing. Because of the type of grass and weeds I am often dealing with, I would be a fool to spray it once and walk away from it. On trees and shrubs, the client commits to the insecticide and miticide rotation I use. That way, the infestation is totally controlled and there is not question about whether I deserve to be paid or not. I recently had one of the landscaping companies in town call me about a lawn area they wanted me to spray for weeds. That lawn is now on a 2 month program. I gave it a liquid fertilizer last weed. Going back next Tuesday to fertilize it again. Then it is going to be sprayed twice, two weeks apart. There are weeds in that lawn the landscaper is unable to control without burning holes in the lawn. Its zoysia, and he has been spot spraying Trimec Plus into the lawn. The lawn is also very chlorotic and slow growing. Not a candidate for any kind of herbicide treatment until it is green and actively growing. Once the lawn is green and actively growing, I will be spraying metsulfuron + Quicksilver, followed by Image, simazine and Gallery.
  10. LushGreenLawn

    LushGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,120

    Actually, the rate on the label, unless it specifically states the minimum to maximum range (ex. 1.0-1.5oz per sq ft.) is not a maximum. If you do not apply any product below the labeled rate, you are to notify the customer as to what rate you put down, what the labeled rate is, and your reasoning, in this case the customer is the jerk. This is part if FIFRA.

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