when do you suspend services?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by green_man, Dec 1, 2004.

  1. green_man

    green_man LawnSite Member
    from nj
    Messages: 26

    have a regular maintenance account who's been a good payer, good source of extra work and generally good customer all year....until this fall when she told me she's been out of work and her unemployment is about to run out. end of september I gave her about $500 in invoices for various work. paid most of it but as of today she's about 70 days past due on a portion of that bill and over 30 days past on her october maint. bill -- total of about $240. not a lot of money, but she also has a leaf bill she hasn't gotten yet but knows is coming and she cancelled a pruning job because she couldn't afford it.

    property needs a final cleanup and I know she wants a few other small jobs done. looking back at what I just wrote I know it's gone too far already but how would you handle it?
  2. Yard Perfect

    Yard Perfect LawnSite Member
    Messages: 133

    Unlike most folks on this site, I would be patient - not do any more work, but if she has been a good source of work and a steady payer, then cut her a little slack - who knows she may find work again and you will retain a good customer, a good payer and a good source referral.
  3. naturescaretaker

    naturescaretaker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 854

    Bills go out on the 1st, due on the 10, delinquent on the 15th and suspended on the 20th. By the time the suspension happens the account is 50 days old. If they avoid us... well it goes into our collection process at 65 days.
  4. Mo Green

    Mo Green LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,487

    I would be patient with regard to what she owes you, but would not perform any more services until she paid the balance in full. Hard times befall alot of good people. Explain this to her and I'm sure she will understand.
  5. turf9

    turf9 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 233

    No point putting more blats on a sinking ship. ;)
  6. Ric Harris

    Ric Harris LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I'm sure her other notes, house, car, gas and electric are all past due too. The question(s) is, How good of a customer was she before getting laid off? Did she pay her bills (invoices) in the past? Can you afford to write-off the balance due at the end of the year.
    If she is/was a good paying customer and has performed well in the past (paid the bill) then write it off at the end of the year. I would not continue to work for nothing unless some kind of written aggreement could settle the future balances when she re-joins the work force. Re-read "Yard Perfect" last statement and have a open heart in this case.

  7. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,366

    No cleanups till maintenance is paid up to date. Were in December, and nobody has money cause "times are rough, and Christmas is coming". I'd be a millionaire for everytime I have heard that one. I think your heading towards a dead end. If these are prior invoices, and she canceleed work on you that means she has no cash. JMO. :)
  8. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,332

    Amen to that, Paul..

    My question is why did she not inform you of her situation before it snowballed? If she knew she had no $$ to cover services, she should have told you so you could have made the call(to do the work or not), and set future payment arrangements for the work . Hopefully, you'll get your money...hopefully.... :D
  9. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Check your state laws . Here you have 60 days from the last day worked on the prop to file a lein on it, and that is what I would do! She quit being a good customer when she quit paying on time. :dizzy:

  10. Gautreaux's LNG

    Gautreaux's LNG LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 379

    Take a good customer who will refer you and put a lein on her home the first time she's past due and she'll run you in the ground! She'll tell everyone who'll listen what type of jerk you are no matter what you've done in the past.

    I would perform no more services until she's caught up. I would simply ask her to pay something on her bill each month, even if it's just $25.00.As long as she does this I would not pursue any collections.

    If the monthly minimum stops coming, she starts avoiding you then pursue other avenues such as collections! But give her a chance it may pay off in the long run!

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