slow paying fert clients! how slow is slow to you?

Discussion in 'Lawn Care Business Management' started by ant, Jun 7, 2017.

  1. ant

    ant LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,463

    i have a few clients that seem to pay me three x per season and usually carry a balance till next season but i know they will eventually pay and we are talking about the 60.00 per app clients!
    how about the 250.00 plus per application clients that carry over a balance from year to year and you have to keep calling them to pay? i have one that paid me in January from the last season and this season has not paid! do you experience the same? how do you handle it? i hate to say to them your account is on hold till you pay because i hate to skip a app!
  2. That Guy Gary

    That Guy Gary LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    I think the best solution for this is CC on file that gets charged automatically.

    You might lose some but in the end it will free up so much time that you'll be getting more done once you fill up your schedule again.
  3. Marine03112

    Marine03112 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,038

    You need to get everyone you can on auto pay. I have made it mandatory for clients to be on credit card processing. Only allow a few write me checks. People with great payment history. If the slow payers won't do this then it is time to replace them. It's your money and you want it now. Not next year.
    TDzacslawncare and grass4gas like this.
  4. Marine03112

    Marine03112 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,038

    Yes he is right. Not worrying about who owes you money and having people on auto pay will in the long run make you more productive instead of taking away from your time to make money. Not chase it. Get rid of the losers and be more productive.
    TDzacslawncare likes this.
  5. Matthews Lawn Care

    Matthews Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 440

    A cc on file is the best way. I take checks and cash as well but I'm not gonna chase it down. If they don't mail in a check, pay when I'm there, or pay online then they get charged on their cc. If they don't have a cc or don't want to put it on file, they are subjected to late fees.
  6. foreplease

    foreplease LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,052

    What you described is slower than slow in my book. Generally, I am cool with almost any arrangement if the terms are something we agreed upon up front. I did $11,000 worth of work to a baseball field for a school district known to be several million dollars behind paying vendors. Did it on a handshake with an athletic director who has exceptional integrity. The twist or key was that I was not a contractor for the school district, I was working for the athletic booster club. I agreed to be paid, essentially, from popcorn and soda sales that would primarily be derived from basketball concessions (a winter sport). I got paid in full and on time according to the terms we agreed to. They did make a $3,000 downpayment.

    The only place I ever felt I was being taken for granted and taken advantage of had all kinds of money in the bank, like $75,000 plus. I walked off in July the day before a 3 week tournament began over an $1,800 invoice from April that went unpaid, along with two others that size in June. There was never a question that I would eventually get the money - we had a longstanding relationship. However, I had had it with being ignored and a series of changing stories. Oddly enough, there was about $80 for new sprinklers on their busiest field. So I took them with me and capped all 4 heads :) There was no rain during the 3 week tournament and high temperatures. They played close to 75 games on that field alone. It didn't hold up too well. I got my check, nearly $6,000, a couple days after the tournament and re-installed the sprinklers. I still have a great relationship with that organization, which is under different management.

    Bottom lime is how much can you afford to get stiffed on, how much time and energy do you want to spend going after it, and how well suited is your temperament for such things. I don't mean to sound like an uncaring hardass. I do a lot of free and volunteer work for kids sports. All I want is both sides to honor whatever the arrangement is.
  7. Lawnappmo

    Lawnappmo LawnSite Member
    Messages: 158

    i started this year threatening late fees if not paid on time. I state the invoice is due with in 10 days after the app. If not paid by the 14th I will re bill and CAN charge a 10 dollar late fee.

    I still have a couple late payers but I have only charged one late fee this year. I mainly did it to be able to increase a customers bill before I sent them to collections.

    If it is a new customer and they are paying late I just drop them and stop dealing with that BS.

    I have a sub that owes me 2k. I just stopped his apps because he is months behind. Its not worth my time.

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