Scum Bag Old Lady

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by dtelawn, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. dtelawn

    dtelawn LawnSite Member
    from Alabama
    Messages: 113

    As we all know, we are going to occasionally get stuck by scum bags and not get paid. Most of the time the small amount isn't worth the hassle to retrieve the money if they don't immediately pay up. Recently I was taken by an old lady. I cut her place and she asked if she could send me a check later in the week. Waiting on her SS check. No problem I tell her to just wait until I come back (in 2 weeks) and pay for both cuts. That day comes and she did the same. I reluctantly said OK send it in the mail. "Sweet old lady just moved in and cash is tight" I let 4 weeks go by (no check) and give her a call. " Oh she is so sorry and lost my cards with address on them and she would pay me when I get there next day. I go by and she is not home. I fought myself about screwing up the schedule having to come back later. I cut it(stupid me) "sweet old lady" 2 days later I go to the door and she lets me know the check is in the mail. After a week I send an invoice and she still hasn't paid. I am really pissed because she played me. My question is how ugly should I get with her to get the money. ($180.00)
  2. SunState Lawn Care inc

    SunState Lawn Care inc LawnSite Senior Member
    from Jax, FL
    Messages: 351

    Tell her you are putting a lien on the place and let her know she will be paying the filing fees as well. I had a guy try and shaft me on 2 clean ups he told me I couldn't do that I showed him I could his wife paid me.
  3. PLS-Tx

    PLS-Tx LawnSite Silver Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 2,384

    Good advice, that's what I would do.

    It's people like this that make you not want to trust anyone.
  4. Mrs. H

    Mrs. H LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 708

    Another option is to hire a collection agency so that you can free your time up to go work on paying accounts. They may charge you up to 1/2. But 1/2 is sometimes better than None.

    And DO NOT let her talk you into cutting it again. No matter what sob story she gives you. Even if she finally pays you, its not worth your time to chase money.
  5. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    Depends on how much money itis.... but even then the off season or a rainy day is a perfect time to take 1/2 a day to go the county seat and file paperwork.......any time you spend collecting a debt can be added to the can late fees. but you contract should state you clients understand how a 180 tab can grow to 400 really quick...
  6. Jhill19

    Jhill19 LawnSite Senior Member
    from WV
    Messages: 293

    Charge a late fee and put some pressure on late paying customers to get paid quicker.
  7. PLS-Tx

    PLS-Tx LawnSite Silver Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 2,384


    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,134

    Send out a flyer to all her neighbors that you r taking up a collection to help pay her lawn bill because she cant.
  9. ACA L&L

    ACA L&L LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,102

    man we used a company a month back, they dont charge u until they get the money from customer, and then its a flat rate of$100 buks. They were awesome, had a check in 6 days, i usually dont mess with it but i did this time, and it worked well. If i can find it iill post it.
  10. poolboy

    poolboy LawnSite Silver Member
    from earth
    Messages: 2,408 It'll cost you around $25, but once they see a collection notice, most times, they pay.

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