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View Full Version : Yeah, but where the FRICK is your HOUSE?


Hedgemaster
04-16-2012, 09:35 PM
Pick an email, any email, or a voice mail for that matter...

Listen to the potential client ramble and tell you that it's a "small" lot, or "I need help!", and blah, blah, blah... "Oh, and I live in West Podunk, how much to cut my lawn?"



CHEESE AND RICE!
Can ANYONE give a STREET ADDRESS when they are ASKING for an ESTIMATE???!!!

SERIOUSLY. Would it be TOO MUCH to ask?

No. I gotta play phone tag and call them back and get an answering machine, which means that when THEY call ME back I'll be running a mower and can't HEAR the call. Then when I DO finally get the ADDRESS, I find out that I was just TWO FRICKIN BLOCKS away from it when they called the FIRST time and didn't give a house number, OR street.

MOTHERFudgeinabucketof... AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHGGGGG!!!!


Of course I'm now TEN MILES away from them.

EVERY. FRICKIN. TIME.

Al Kessinger
04-16-2012, 09:44 PM
MOTHERFudgeinabucketof... AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHGGGGG!!!!.


Bad day I take it Hedgemaster????
LOL I had the same problem when I ran an auto repair shop. Id spend half an hour trying to tell them to bring it in and let me look at it. but NO they expect you to know why the WHATCHA-CALL-IT connected to the DOO-HICKY on the side of the motor isnt working. WOW I MISS THOSE DAYS...........NOT!

SECTLANDSCAPING
04-16-2012, 10:13 PM
I have my voicemail set up that says leave a number, address and service required. They never listen! They also like to have some kind of weird out of state number so I cant even recognize where there calling from. I figure its spam and dont answer but its a job lead. If I do answer its spam.:mad: Then when I do figure out where there calling from its 20 miles away from where I'm at but just was a hour ago.

Steve
04-17-2012, 04:45 PM
No. I gotta play phone tag and call them back and get an answering machine, which means that when THEY call ME back I'll be running a mower and can't HEAR the call. Then when I DO finally get the ADDRESS, I find out that I was just TWO FRICKIN BLOCKS away from it when they called the FIRST time and didn't give a house number, OR street.

Do you find any correlation between those that call and don't leave an address with telemarketers or some kind of spam going on?

Or are these people just not paying attention?

CHEESE2009
04-17-2012, 05:07 PM
I hate that crap.

Happens all the time... I get lucky if they leave their home number, then I reverse search it to find where they live lol.

I hate when they say; "Hi my name is Moron, I want lawn service... call me at 'cell phone number'".... So useless...

I want to avoid conversation unless it's a lawn I want! I don't want to call back some freak with a trashy lawn getting their hopes up.

Hedgemaster
04-17-2012, 05:32 PM
Do you find any correlation between those that call and don't leave an address with telemarketers or some kind of spam going on?

Or are these people just not paying attention?

No. It's just people who don't realize that they are wasting valuable time by requiring additional calls/emails just to get the process started.

thom
04-19-2012, 08:38 AM
Bad day I take it Hedgemaster????
LOL I had the same problem when I ran an auto repair shop. Id spend half an hour trying to tell them to bring it in and let me look at it. but NO they expect you to know why the WHATCHA-CALL-IT connected to the DOO-HICKY on the side of the motor isnt working. WOW I MISS THOSE DAYS...........NOT!

Al,you and I have a common history.I was an auto mechanic-shop manager from 1982 untill 2008.I was a member of Iatn.

Al Kessinger
04-19-2012, 11:45 AM
Al,you and I have a common history.I was an auto mechanic-shop manager from 1982 untill 2008.I was a member of Iatn.


So you know exactly what im talking about then.
I still believe that these cars need a trouble code named " Driver-Idiot" lol

thom
04-19-2012, 02:43 PM
So you know exactly what im talking about then.
I still believe that these cars need a trouble code named " Driver-Idiot" lol

I agree.
I helped my father run his business from a corner gasoline station.
the "Driver Idiot"was a daily event.

stevef1201
04-19-2012, 07:32 PM
Al,you and I have a common history.I was an auto mechanic-shop manager from 1982 untill 2008.I was a member of Iatn.

You mean that when I call you and ask why my car is going shang chang chang at 30 you cant tell over the phone whats wrong? :rolleyes:

Hedgemaster
04-19-2012, 08:11 PM
You mean that when I call you and ask why my car is going shang chang chang at 30 you cant tell over the phone whats wrong? :rolleyes:

If I told you my shifter lever went "pop" and flew all the way to the right today, could you tell me what's wrong over teh interweb?

;)

Al Kessinger
04-19-2012, 08:23 PM
If I told you my shifter lever went "pop" and flew all the way to the right today, could you tell me what's wrong over teh interweb?

;)

I agree with one of the posts in that thread sounds like a busted linkage cable or Ive seen where the cable comes out of the bracket by the transmission, so when you move the shifter your just moving the slack in the cable and not actually shifting the transmission

Hedgemaster
04-19-2012, 08:31 PM
I agree with one of the posts in that thread sounds like a busted linkage cable or Ive seen where the cable comes out of the bracket by the transmission, so when you move the shifter your just moving the slack in the cable and not actually shifting the transmission

Yeah, I hope it's an easy fix and is a readily available part. Fortunately it "broke" in neutral. At least they didn't have to drag it up onto the flatbed.


Oh, and if anyone is wondering, YES I have pics of it. :D

Hedgemaster
04-22-2012, 06:54 PM
Just now on my voicemail...


"Hi, my name is Carrie, I'd like an estimate for grass cutting, my number is 123-456-7890."



AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHGGGGGG!!!

shadrach
04-22-2012, 08:01 PM
My favorite is " I have an average sized yard. How much would you charge me to mow it?"

Hedgemaster
04-22-2012, 08:12 PM
My favorite is " I have an average sized yard. How much would you charge me to mow it?"

"The average price, of course."


:D

Hedgemaster
05-11-2012, 10:27 PM
Email exchange:

Potential client: (Take note of the house number)

Hi Hedge...saw your ad on Craigslist & would like you to give me an estimate on periodic cuttings for one of my rental units in Forest Hills. The exact address is: 321 Maple Ave, 15102. I usually have a tenant cut it...but he's been slacking. Thanx....412-123-4567

Me:

I'd be happy to stop and take a look, as I'll be in the area tomorrow.
I'll give you a price for cutting every other week. (unless you would prefer weekly service)

Thanks,
Hedge



Potential client:

OK - sounds great!




Me: (while sitting at the dead-end looking wondering why I can't find the house)

I cant seem to find it. 310 is the last address on Maple.

???


Sent from my Samsung Epic™ 4G Touch




Potential client: (long after I left the area)

It 'is' 310 Lynnwood...that's it. It's an end house.





:eek: Are you FREAKING kidding me? :mad:


Me:


Last house on the right?
OK, ill try again tomorrow.


Sent from my Samsung Epic™ 4G Touch


Potential client:

Yeah....the retaining wall is coming down??....popping out (we're about to have it changed :)



:rolleyes:


Well, it appears I deleted my last email, but I DID eventually find the place. It hasn't been cut YET and there's barely access for a 21" push mower, so I politely declined.



Seriously... they follow the directions to a "T", but provide the WRONG address. (facepalm)

JeffK26
05-11-2012, 10:51 PM
My favorite is " I have an average sized yard. How much would you charge me to mow it?"

Maybe this should be it's own thread, but I got a call today....

Customer: "how much do you charge for an average sized lawn in Arnold.

Me: "The average price." ( seriously, i remembered this thread and responded with that.)

Customer: Are you being a smartass?"

Me:" No ma'am, I really have to look at the lawn."

Customer:"I won't hold you to a price, just a ballpark figure."

Me: $32 to $40 depending on various obstacles fencing.

Customer: "The last guy said $20."

Me: "Ask for insurance, and ask if he's licensed as a business in the State of Mo."

Customer: "Oh i'm not stupid, I asked and he showed me insurance."

Me: Ok ma'am, I can't help you then. But I do give you the phone number to my insurance company and policy number so you can check any time you want to make sure my insurance is current so you know I didn't just pay one payment and canceled so I have paper that says I'm insured. I also give you the number of the state licensing office with my license number. Please ask him for these things, and if he can give you these and he's legit, call me next season when he's out of business. Thank you for considering me, have a great weekend and a wonderful Mother's Day."

and then............

A guy followed me out of one store to another...I parked, locked up my equipment with the ol' cable and lock whilst I went into the store to get brats to grill for dinner..........

He asked for a card...He wants a bid for a HOA common area.

He's the President of the board and is meeting me tomorrow morning at 9am. to show me the area i need to mow.

sweeeet.

Hedgemaster
05-26-2012, 09:10 PM
Email exchange just now...


(Email Subject line) Mowing :Emergency Spring cleanup in area 15238
On May 26, 2012, at 7:20 PM, xxxx@vzw.blackberry.net wrote:

Grass is 4 weeks since last cut, need estimate for cutting now! RSVP
Sent from my Verizon Wireless


(facepalm)


My reply - and while trying not to be a total prick about it...

"15238" is a bit vague.
My ad and outgoing phone message specifically request an address for estimates as this speeds up the process by eliminating the need to go back and forth for basic info.

By providing the requested info, I can better determine if I can assist.
Thank you.

The Cleaning Doctor
05-27-2012, 11:56 AM
Email exchange just now...


(Email Subject line) Mowing :Emergency Spring cleanup in area 15238



(facepalm)


My reply - and while trying not to be a total prick about it...

Tell him to get a goat. :D

Hedgemaster
05-27-2012, 04:54 PM
Mustn't have been as "emergent" as they would suggest since they didn't reply with an address.




I will say that my new outgoing message on my voicemail has helped tremendously, as the majority now lead off with their address. LOL

Steve
05-28-2012, 09:35 AM
I will say that my new outgoing message on my voicemail has helped tremendously, as the majority now lead off with their address. LOL

Isn't it fascinating how tweaking your operations can make things run smoother? I bet as you move forwards, there will be a lot more tweaks.

Hedgemaster
05-22-2013, 10:18 PM
Same crap, different year...


Overall, I have to say that 99% of people now include the full address when leaving messages/emails.
This is a good thing.


Yesterday morning I received a voicemail asking for an estimate in a specific part of town - but no street address given. Sigh.

I called back and (voicemail) indicated that if he could provide an address, I'd be happy to stop and take a look. I added that he could text me the address if that would be easier.

This EVENING, at around 7:30pm, I was out picking up annuals with my wife when he called and left another message.
"Hi, I guess we're playing phone tag - just wanted to talk to you to see if you can get my lawn cut. I have family coming on Saturday and it hasn't been cut since last fall. I'm hoping you have some time in the next day or two to get it done before they arrive, give me a call."


Really?

REALLY?

It's WEDNESDAY NIGHT and you need it cut by SATURDAY, and you STILL don't leave your address as is requested in my outgoing message (twice) AND the voicemail I left?

I was IN HIS AREA TODAY and could have stopped to look - IF he had provided an address!
Thursday and Friday are booked solid and we're supposed to get rain. I have a wedding to go to on Saturday.

People make this harder than it needs to be.


Moron.

SECTLANDSCAPING
05-22-2013, 10:37 PM
This guy called me last thursday and didnt leave a address. Then as I'm leaving the area he lives in, he calls again. I asked him where he lives he rambles on about how it takes 10 mins to cut and then goes on about the last guy charged $20 then proceeds to give me directions. Finally i get the address and I drove by the place while I was talking to him.

After turning around. I get there and see this.
<a href="http://s159.photobucket.com/user/dirtypockets/media/CAM00864_zpsf8409c7a.jpg.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t132/dirtypockets/CAM00864_zpsf8409c7a.jpg" border="0" alt=" photo CAM00864_zpsf8409c7a.jpg"/></a>



I'm about to drive off and he comes out waving. Ohh god! I ask him weekly? biweekly? Ohh no, it only needs to be cut every 3-4 weeks. Ill call you. Sure you will. I just left!

Hedgemaster
05-22-2013, 10:59 PM
That's what gets me. You play phone tag and find out that if the people would have given an address the first time they called, you could have given them the quote while you were on the next street.
NO! They call you with the info after you've driven 20 miles away.


I really have stopped MOST of it with a very pleasant, and clear, outgoing message on my voicemail, but a few still find their way through.

myblacktruck
05-23-2013, 05:41 PM
I hate that how hard is it to give me your stupid address. Here's another one that irritates the hell outta me. This lady calls me with her area she lives in and telephone #. It was a little outta the area I'm serving but, it was several acres and, there's money in that area so I called back and left a message to give me her address. She calls back on Tuesday, and we set something for Thursday, as thats the day I'm closest to them. I call when I'm done mowing letting them know I'm on my way and get no answer. I call the other number and the husband says oh I hired someone Tuesday night . REALLY ??? I guess calling me to cancel never crossed your mind oh I was so pissed, but not nearly as pissed as I would've been after driving 1/2 hour up then 45 minutes to an hour back home stupid people how ignorant can you be.

ratchetmaster2
07-01-2013, 10:14 AM
Ha! I've never had that much trouble getting an address, but I do completely understand. Maybe it's the area I live in, but I get a lot less phone calls and more e-mails and texts. I guess people around here are more comfortable with their new technology and don't want to talk on the phone, so I cater to that. Even in e-mails, some people just don't want to give up on the address.

What really gets me is the people who won't give you their address for "privacy reasons". Like they think someone wants to pretend to be a landscaper so they can rape you or something. Like bitch, I'm 18, you're 47, ain't nothin' goin' on.

Sometimes they say "well here's my zipcode and a intersection nearby, I don't want to give my address out to too many people because I'm shopping for quotes". Again...nobody gives a **** if they know where you live.



Here's a trick though, you guys might thank me.
I don't even go out for a physical estimate anymore (unless it's REALLY local. Like within a mile or two of my current location). I do it all without seeing the property. Now, before you say "but what if!!!", I give them a price range. I say "I can come out an give you a firm estimate, or can I give you a price range over the phone if you're shopping around." Of course they always chose that because it's convenient.

I ask for lot size (which they never know), how often they want it cut, if it's currently overgrown, if it's a corner house. I tell them that I need their address to look up the lot size. So I take their address and put it into Google Maps and see where it is. "Oh, that's close to where I have other lawns" or "ew..that's far away". I also take a look at the street view picture if it's available.
Then, I type in Google "*their address* acre" and I get several websites telling me all about the house. Usually Zillow.com comes up. It is very useful. It tells me the lot size, price the house last sold for (so you can tell the richy-riches), when it last sold, mortgage estimate, etc etc.
If it's some house in a rich area, and they are paying like $3k/month mortgage, then I'm sure as hell going to charge them $40/cut when it would usually be a $35 lawn.

So I take the lot size and compare it. If the lot size is .17 acres, using other properties I already mow, I can estimate that it would take me 30-35 minutes to service a .17 acre lot. So I say "my price would be $35-45". That gives me a cushion if I go to mow it, and it's got 2x as much trimming as I expected it.
ALSO, people LOVE it when you come in under estimate. When you say "$35-45", they're really expecting it to be $40-45, and if you say $35, they will think they just saved a ton of money.

This might be different for you guys in less populated areas. Zillow.com might have less info if you don't live in a super-populated city like me. IDK

Hedgemaster
07-01-2013, 10:43 AM
^^^ You still need their street address.

Which is the point of this thread. ;)

ratchetmaster2
07-01-2013, 11:30 AM
^^^ You still need their street address.

Which is the point of this thread. ;)

Well....not exactly. If they can actually tell you the lot size, you're fine (mostly). But if you start the conversation off like this, you have yet another reason to ask for their address. Not just like "well gimme your address, I'll come by some time". It's "if you provide me with you address, I'll look it up on my computer and get back to you within 2 minutes".

And it's not nearly as stressful for you. If you ONLY do on-site estimates, then you're stressing out a bit. Like you were saying "when they finally give me their address, I'm 20 miles away! When I was a block away an hour ago". With doing online quotes, it doesn't even matter if you were next door and your now a hundred miles away.

stevef1201
07-01-2013, 02:23 PM
I use our county property appraiser web site. If I get the address, that's great. If I get your name and know that you own the house that's good. Renters don't care, they will give the address. I get all the information about the property, size of lot, sf of house, pool, patio, drive etc, and an overhead picture. I can also get a map. I then give a price range. I tell them that it could be higher depending on what I find out when I get there to look at it.
Like 123 some street, it's on .17 acres, the house id 1 story, 2500 sf with 500 sf of driveway, 100 sf of side walk, 1200 sf of patio, detached garage 300 sf. The overhead shows three large trees, flower beds around the house, a screened in pool, and kids play structure. I would give a price of (not really) say 20 to 40 dollars per cut depending on what is in the yard. I need to see the yard to give a firm estimate

I usually am right in the ballpark with these types of estimates, sometimes not.

Shoppers say ok and I may never hear from them again.

People interested in service ask when I can come take a look at it. I try very hard to schedule estimates for when I am in the area, give the estimate, do the cut, get paid, move on.