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Question about parking lot weeds

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by MANICURED LAWNS, Jul 11, 2007.


    MANICURED LAWNS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    I have a client..happens to be a church, in the proposal I stated I would keep sidewalk cracks free of weeds....this week I am approach by a trustee wanting me to spray the sidewalks AND the parking lots for weeds( he acted like parking lots were a part of the deal and I was missing it) Should I do the parking lots and not charge or charge...it is costing me more money then I had planned for just the walk ways...????
  2. MOturkey

    MOturkey LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,782

    For me, I think it would depend upon how profitable the account was, or how badly I needed the business.

    This is one of those situations where a written estimate, and or, contract, would have solved the problem. No, I usually don't use them either, but I had a similar experience with a small church this spring myself.

    The church is right across the street from an office and private residence I've mowed for four years. They called and asked for an estimate. There is the church proper, plus a vacant lot of a bit over an acre in back. The church is on a corner lot, so ditches on two sides, part of which is too steep for a Z, so it is push mower or trim.

    I went by the ladies' home, and told her I would do the church for $40, mowing each week, or as needed, and inquired about the lot. She hollered at her husband, and asked how often they wanted the lot mowed. They discussed it, and said they only wanted it mowed "often enough to keep the city from complaining about the weeds", and decided once a month would work.

    I told her I'd have to have $60 if mowing only once a month (I could just see mowing waist high grass and weeds in the early summer), but it would be far less if mowed regularly. She said she would discuss it with the minister, and get back with me.

    She called my wife a few days later, and told her that the preacher had found someone "a little cheaper," but she would keep my card.

    Well, the guy mowing is older than I, probably late 60's, seems like a nice guy, talked to my wife one day while I was mowing across the street. I think he ended up buying a smaller Snapper Z after watching me. :)

    Anyhow, I've been watching. He is mowing the lot every other week, not once a month. The steep ditch in front, he is either not doing at all, or only once in a while. He told my wife the preacher said not to worry about it, as it is the responsibilty of the highway department anyhow. He does a great job around the church, but doesn't do any trimming around the vacant lot (chain link on two sides), in other words, the service I bid on, and what they are now getting, is apples and oranges. If I could have mowed bi-weekly on the lot, I would probably have done it for half or a little more.

    Next time I get in one of these situations, where more than one person makes the decisions, such as a church board, I'm going to submit a written estimate, spelling out exactly my proposed services.

    No big deal I didn't get it, and the guy may need the money more than I do, but it would sure be nice to have another account right there, as I'd have done about $180 worth of mowing without even moving the trailer.

    MANICURED LAWNS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Its a decent sized account $150 every 10 days even w/o rain its still half green...the treasurer is my best friends mother who basically got me the account. Seriously considering just spraying around everything to save me from trimming on these 100+ degree days so a lil extra spray isn't gonna kill me and spraying would be a free service on me since its saving me hours in the end. Thanks for your reply
  4. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 2,994

    The parking lot isn't the sidewalk. And who is this "trustee"? Is this the person you are to go through for business with the church? Or is it just some old person with nothing better to do except act like they run the church? Tell them if they want the parking lot done that the contract can be renegotiated.

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