Why you dont work for family

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by CTmower, Jun 9, 2008.

  1. CTmower

    CTmower LawnSite Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 324

    So my uncle has been asking me for weeks to come over and remove just a couple shrubs he has at the front of his driveway.. He told me they werent too big and that we could probably just pull the out with my truck.. So i go over there yesterday and pull up to see these 30 year old monstors!!! Hooked my truck and chain up to them and they barely even budged.. Ended up going home and getting a chain saw.. A quick job turned into a 4 hour ordeal and my 14 foot trailer is now stacked high with shrubs that i have to bring to the dump and thats only one side of the driveway.. I still have to load up the other side.. Normally i'd charge $320 plus my dump fees but theres no way i can charge my uncle that.. I'll probably walk away charging dump fees and a little bit to cover my gas expenses..... And this is why you dont work for family!!!!!!
  2. Allamericanlandscaping

    Allamericanlandscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 32

    looks like you learned your lesson the hard way, i figured out not to do "favors" long ago. at least you can cover some of your fees and maybe he will do soemthing nice for you one day.
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    Nothing wrong with the family - just the family communication, it sounds like.
  4. dcgreenspro

    dcgreenspro LawnSite Senior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 688

    Take the gas money and dumping fee but that would be as far as I would charge my family. Other than that, I would of had fun ripping them things out for my uncle. Now, I would have had my two brothers, old man w/ my grandfather barkin orders and pouring shots and beers when we finished. Family jobs, most of the men show up and knock out any type of hard labor in less than an hour.
  5. jameson

    jameson LawnSite Fanatic
    from PNW
    Messages: 7,419

    In the same vein, recently I (read: employees) began tending to my grandmother's lawn under the misguided notion that the visits would be free of charge (she's on route :laugh:) and I would consider it all a pleasant distraction to visit my nonagenarian grandmother.

    However, she would not have it! She insisted on payment (Grandma says, "People don't work for free!"). She began writing checks - checks which I would not cash; that is until she noticed they were not being cashed and pitched a twister of some fury which belies her geriatric status. I promptly began cashing the checks, to avoid any further displays.

    But once payment managed its way full circle, she began expecting us (including me) to show up, not just on the same day of the week (that's a given), but at the same time each day of the week - an impossibility for my crew and me! Then she began to nit-pick (in a sweet grandmotherly way, of course!), and a host of close and distant relatives began to cluck about this and that. . .

    All-in-all its been a challenge, a worthy and blessed challenge to be sure, but I don't recommend working for relatives to the faint-of-heart.
  6. CTmower

    CTmower LawnSite Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 324

    I never expected to make any money on this job.. I mean family is family, it just sucks that a "small" job turned into a half day affair and me spending a hour or so at the dump.. WHen it comes to family i only want my expenses paid for.. There was really no wear and tear on my machines since it was only a chain saw so i'll take this one as a learning lesson.. I'd hate to be my next customer in line, their definitely getting charge my full price to the minute :)
  7. All_Toro_4ME

    All_Toro_4ME LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,578

    Also dont get caught up doing it for friends either. My gf's friends are wanting lawn service as well. (Free of course) Told them I dont have the time. Dont want to even begin that snowball of a mess.
  8. k911lowe

    k911lowe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 526

    hard to turn down family and even harder to charge them.usually they are willing to pay expenses.not much you can do.if you expect them to find time for you and yours then you must do the right thing.

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