Depending on how you operate your mowing business, you can run into a lot of troubles trying to collect money from customers once your services are performed. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we hear from entrepreneurs on the various methods they use to ensure they are paid for services rendered. Maybe one of their methods could be implemented by your company!
I have picked up several new properties since dropping the NON PAYERS.
I also instituted a policy to be paid at the first of the month in advance (so as I would not get the shaft again) with any extra work billed monthly. I gotta tell y’all I have not lost a new customer yet. I see a pattern with this. Pay me month to month, if you can not afford me any longer at least we can be square. I have had every new mowing customer of mine write a check for one month of service on the spot with no hassle or BS.
My question to you is? How does this make my company look in the customer’s eyes?
I only bill this to homeowners. Commercial accounts are billed monthly.”
A second lawn care business owner said “I bill my commercials the same way unless they have their own payment terms in the contract. This has worked for me too but now I have a commercial account a month behind. There about to be double billed.
In the past, I been burned by debit, paypal, and checks. All 3 options allow chargebacks/stop payments. I won’t be surprised the day someone hands me monopoly money.”
A third added “I don’t have anything set in stone yet, but I tell people that my payment options are ‘at time of service’, or ‘pre-pay 2-4 cuts.’ The only ones I send a bill to are people who don’t live at the properties I’m cutting. (rentals)
Most pay per cut, but some pre-pay for the month because they like the convenience. I won’t mow more than once without being paid up. I’ve only been burned by two people (last season) and each was for one service that was unpaid. I won’t go back until I’m paid for the previous cut.”
A fourth shared “You guys lose money when you charge per cut. Make it so that the client will have to pay regardless if you show up (because of bad weather, etc). You want stability at all times.
A client might say, ‘I don’t want to pay for work you didn’t do.’ The fact is, payment should have little to do with the work you do.
Charge similar to what you’d expect if you have a plan with a cell phone provider. Regardless if you aren’t using your phone, you still have to pay the minimum.
My mowing season has approximately 24 visits per customer, that comes out to $551.88.
With rain, I may lose 6 visits, which would be $137.97.
The way I have it, the clients will still pay me the $137.97 that some of you are missing out on!
If a client of mine doesn’t want to pay because I was not able to show up 6 times due to rain (it gets bad here), he has 2 options: pay, or find someone else.
The client will usually come crawling back, because our service is of high quality. To keep the quality up, we need MONEY.
For the season, my mowing clients submit to me three (3) post-dated checks.
1. May + June = $183.96
2. July + August = $183.96
3. September + October = 183.96
I’m basically avoiding a ton of stress by not collecting money from each client every month.
There is no one to chase!
Unfortunately, all checks were due yesterday and not everyone submitted them to me. No big deal, chasing clients one time is a lot better then 6 times!
Once I get all their checks for the entire season, I’ll be free as a bird!
A lot of my previous problems with customers were all about when it came to collecting money monthly, implementing this methodology really turned things around!
Everyone should utilize post-dated checks, it’s so simple!”
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