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lawn mowering
05-10-2010, 02:22 PM
O.K So their is a huge problem with late payments and no payments lately because of the economy I came up with the Idea to collect at the begining of the month but customers try to say What if you dont show up or its to complicated for me (for them) to keep track of and to bill them should I charge a billing fee what would the customers say to that I mean there sure to complain but I have sevral costumers to keep track of on paper and calender.I would much rather get them to prepay for the month.:confused:

Steve
05-10-2010, 06:52 PM
If you can get your customers to prepay, that is fantastic.

If they won't do that, is there a way you can get a credit card # so you can charge their account if they don't pay otherwise?

How are you dealing with it now when your customers are slow to pay?

MountainViewGreenskeeper
05-10-2010, 07:33 PM
I dont do any contracts but all my customers pay at beginning of month or per cut. They need to be there or have check under front door mat for per cut customers. If they dont trust you for once a month payment then why are they using you for services. Im up front about it I dont have anyone owe me money. If they cancel befor the month is up then they get there money back they just gunna have to trust me. Again if there is no trust then to me its not a customer I want.

As for the credit card option I myself would love to offer that as an option or none payment agreement(would have to sign something to make that work though). But seeing how credit card processing goes im not sure I can offer it at this time. but thats just me maybe steve's advice works for you.

Ive only had 1 customer turn me down from the once a month or per cut payment so its worth it to me so far to keep things the way they are.

Hope any of what I just said helps...

CHEESE2009
05-10-2010, 08:07 PM
I sent a note out saying the due date for the May payment is Friday the 7th.

Though I started May 3rd.

My customers all receive a mow, before they have to pay. If they don't pay, I only lose X$ & a crappy customer. T

Many of them paid me ahead of time, & some paid me on the due date.


The idea is, you the OWNER & the CUSTOMER need to trust each other.

One mowing is not really a loss. You show that you arrived to do the job, so they will pay you on the due date.

Charge before the month, but give them a little trust in you by allowing them the first week of every month to pay.

Clients who don't pay on time, get a phone call from me.

"I have sent you an invoice/bill/note & your payment is overdue. You must have forgotten about it, though I am just calling to remind you - I am going out TOMORROW to collect payments in your area, will you be home?"

If they dick you around, it's your choice to keep them or not.

Some of my clients I'm used to, I know that they will miss the due date - but they do pay (just a few days late).

Steve
05-11-2010, 03:47 PM
I sent a note out saying the due date for the May payment is Friday the 7th.

Do most of them pay by the 7th?

So you basically bill in advance at the beginning of the month?

I dont do any contracts but all my customers pay at beginning of month or per cut.

What made you go with this style of billing? Did you implement it right away or did you do it over time? Did any customers give you any problems because of it?

lxarth
05-16-2010, 01:54 PM
I'm having an issue like the OP as well. I'm about to send out my second batch of statements, but the customers who are late are trustworthy, just busy if you ask me. But still, I have a few hundred bucks just waiting to come in.

Would be nice to upgrade some equipment, but I can't 'till I get paid, lol.

OP, I understand it might be tricky keeping track of your customers, my advice is to just get Gopher Lawn Care Business Software (http://www.gophersoftware.com). I got it last year for $100, and it's great. You can keep track of everything, and use professional looking invoices, statements, receipts, etc.

I would say to invest in a bookkeeping program, it will save you a lot of time. I have been telling people I just bill them at the end of the month, but I think I might start telling people that I bill at the beginning of the month, that way I get paid! It sounds like CHEESE2009 has a good idea, just tell 'em you bill in advance, and expect payment on the first week of the month. Send out a statement (via Gopher) about 2 weeks early, and just wait for money. Call them if you don't get paid.

Don't be afraid of the customer. Just say you think they missed the due date of May 7th. Tell them you accept checks, but currently can't accept credit cards. As they say in the car business, assume the sale. Assume that the customer is going to pay, and wants to pay. It's hard for people to say no, so just tell 'em they can mail a check out to you, or you can pick it up under the door-mat.

bdlawncare2010
06-09-2010, 10:50 PM
I always bill out a month in advance on my contracts if they sign up they pay the day we sign the papers or my monthly payments when they start service they pay for 1 month from that point on. I want do a lawn on a month payment unless i get paid first i have been screwed to many times I usually dont have any problems if it rains and we miss a week i just take a week off the next bill.

Steve
06-10-2010, 07:54 PM
I always bill out a month in advance on my contracts if they sign up they pay the day we sign the papers or my monthly payments when they start service they pay for 1 month from that point on.

Can you tell us how that works? Would a customer sign a contract with you and then pay you for the first month in advance right then and there? Or how do you present all that and sell it?

Do your customers ever prefer to pay for each mowing, the day of?