Non-paying lawn care customer story.

Sometimes it’s the lawn clients you never think you would have any problems with, that give you problems. Then other times it’s those overgrown lawn clients that give you problems. You just can’t tell for sure at the beginning which clients are going to be trouble as we will see in this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. If you can’t tell who is going to be the client that won’t pay, it might be useful to take some of these payment strategy tips and try billing in a new way.

One lawn care business owner wrote “I have a mowing customer that owes me over $200. We went to her home to give her the 5th final notice and apparently her home is abandoned. All furniture is in it.

The neighbor has bad knees and paid my client part of my bill for me to mow a little down the side of his hill and a little along the back of his home because he has bad arthritis and can’t negotiate the hill.

He then told me today, that this woman abandoned her home over a month ago, left her dog in the home and animal control had to break into the home to rescue the dog. Her kids repeatedly threw empty beer bottles in the neighbors lawns late at night, etc etc…..NONE of this I knew. It wasn’t even apparent….except the kids being slobs….but nothing really terrible.

In a normal year this would piss me off, and I could deal with the loss, but most of my lawns I have not, nor have they needed mowing in 4 weeks. My client’s lawns are so random I drive around on Tuesday night to all my clients to make a list of people that need mowing so I can make a consolidated list for Thursday and Friday so I’m not mowing a lawn on Tues, two on Wed, and three on Thursday, I can just put all of them on two days to save money.

In a normal year this $200+ bill would be rough, but not a big deal. This year, this is pissing me off and there is nothing I can do. Except waste money to track her down for court and then POSSIBLY get paid 3 months to a year from now.

Also, it’s not so much a no payment or late, it’s she abandoned her home, NEVER contacted me, even with a lame excuse.

She has disappeared and I cannot even bother her with invoices or call her since she changed the number. It’s exactly like finding out $200+ was stolen from your wallet.”

A second lawn care business owner added “I feel your pain. I was mowing for a local bank and I had 4 of their franchises with a 12 month contract with mulch, hedge trimming, and snow removal. I thought this was like hitting the jackpot and this would be extra $ in the off season.

I mowed for two months and then I started getting calls of damage to the property from what the last contractor did to the property. My reply to this was, do you see any green paint on these damaged light poles? No it’s red paint, they said. I run John Deere mowers and they are all green. Well you did it, the bank caller said, the damage wasn’t there before you began service. I tried to argue with them and said why don’t you check your security tape to see if I hit the poles. They never replied to that conversation. It is now mid July and still no money. I’m out a couple of grand because of this.

To make things worse, I mow for people that live out of town and who fell behind on payments. Then they sent a check that bounced.

This year sucks as far as trying to collect money and the heat and the drought sucks too.”

A third shared “something has to change in your billing process. I used to be just as miserable as you guys, but once I started ONLY accepting post-dated checks for the ENTIRE season (in 3 payments), I never had a damn payment problem every again.

The only payment problems I do have, are for the few lawn clients I let pay cash, or the old way (monthly). Other than that, if I can’t show up, I’m still making money, it’s a business.

You guys need to do this, I’m telling you. You will appreciate life more, and get your passion back to the point it was when you first started out!If not post dated checks, then take credit card payment and bill a month in advance.”

Read more about Lawn Care Business Bidding Tips, Upsells, And Disasters To Avoid. Learn how to improve your bidding process with this lawn care business book and be prepared before hand by knowing what you should be looking out for before a problem occurs.ā€¯

If you need help estimating lawn care or snow plowing jobs, get these lawn care and snow plowing estimation calculators.

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Lawn Care Business Books And Software.
How To Get Lawn Care Customers Vol. 2
The landscaping and lawn care business plan startup guide
A rebellious teenagers guide to starting a landscaping & lawn care business
The GopherHaul Lawn Care Business Show Episode Guide.
Stop Lowballing! A Lawn Care Business Owner\'s Guide To Success