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landonkade
10-12-2007, 05:40 PM
i have a customer i service for lawn care, and we bill him by the month. *So we have sent him a bill about 2 weeks ago around the 29th of Sept. We have called him 2 times once on the 2nd of Oct and then again on the 7th, due to non-payment, so he says i will talk to my wife to see about it, she handles the bills. Here it is the 12th and still havent received anything from them. Bill totaling $193

Its a $50 yard= $100 a month ****-bi weekly service,very easy yard and i have other homes near him

He pays regular so i dont know whats going on. Thinking about not servicing him again until i get the money

so what do i need to do, any advise

any letters for non paying customers?

Steve
10-12-2007, 08:49 PM
Well, my take is I wouldn't service them again until they paid. I would call up one more time to follow up and ask if they are going to be able to resolve the payment before you service them again.

landonkade
10-12-2007, 09:07 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 12 2007,9:49)]Well, my take is I wouldn't service them again until they paid. I would call up one more time to follow up and ask if they are going to be able to resolve the payment before you service them again.
should i start collecting payment when finsihed with job for now on, to prevent this from happing again

Steve
10-12-2007, 09:10 PM
If you can do that and it's you collecting the money, I think that is the best way. There is nothing like being paid on the spot for the service you provided and not having to wait for your money.

landonkade
10-12-2007, 09:13 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 12 2007,10:10)]If you can do that and it's you collecting the money, I think that is the best way. There is nothing like being paid on the spot for the service you provided and not having to wait for your money.
i would say 36 accounts pay when i am finished and the other 14 are bills total of 50 accounts

Steve
10-12-2007, 09:15 PM
As you grow, most companies move away from collecting on the spot, but at this point it can really help you with improving your cash flow. When you are starting out, cash flow is really important.

Later, you probably wouldn't want employees collecting payments because you may never see it.

landonkade
10-12-2007, 09:23 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 12 2007,10:15)]As you grow, most companies move away from collecting on the spot, but at this point it can really help you with improving your cash flow. When you are starting out, cash flow is really important.

Later, you probably wouldn't want employees collecting payments because you may never see it.
so should i send bills out before the service is completed, like send the bill out 4 days before i service, so i dont have to wait so long to get the money in the mail, or send bills out after service is completed

Clean Lawn
10-12-2007, 09:26 PM
You can try this with that customer. I send out roughly 10 days before the next billing month an invoice to my customers. I require from them to send payment to me for the next billing month. Meaning its now October and around the 21st-25th I sit down and print out everyones invoice for Novembers lawn services. I send them out the next day and before we come to service the lawns payment is sent and received by us for that month or payment is left for that month at their home on the first day we come to service their property.
I have had one person get away without payment because she called said payment was in the mail and asked if we would wait a couple days to service the lawn because they were leaving town. We did wait those days but the payment never came so she is not getting service until that bill is remedied and if she wants us to continue servicing her property payment is going to be made in advance before we come out to the property.

Steve
10-12-2007, 09:28 PM
Some lcos will actually send out invoices in the beginning of the month so their customers actually pre-pay for the month. If you can change your customers over to that, then good for you!

You could also ask if customers want to prepay for the year, next season and then give them a 10% discount or something like that.

landonkade
10-12-2007, 09:32 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 12 2007,10:28)]Some lcos will actually send out invoices in the beginning of the month so their customers actually pre-pay for the month. If you can change your customers over to that, then good for you!

You could also ask if customers want to prepay for the year, next season and then give them a 10% discount or something like that.
i know there is several lawn care contracts here on the forum, which one is the most downloaded that people use

pnplawn
10-12-2007, 09:35 PM
I charge on my monthly contracts month in advance. Here is copy of my contract I use.

PNP LAWN CARE CONTRACT (http://www.pnplawncare.com/contract.html)

Steve
10-12-2007, 09:43 PM
I don't know but I think it comes down to how you want to run your business.

Some lcos dont want to use contracts. Others do. Others want a flat fee charged per month across the entire year regardless if they show up to cut a lawn.

Which would work best for you and your situation?

pmblair
10-12-2007, 10:22 PM
Ok, here's my take on things...

I would put them on a contract. One flat fee each month.

(the following was taken from http://www.greenandcleanga.com/services.html)
http://www.greenandcleanga.com/images/yrls.jpg

If you do the math on that, it's 33 visits. Let's say your services are $40 per visit to their lawn. So $40 x 33 = $1,320. Now you want to charge them a flat fee monthly. So $1,320/12 = $110. So your monthly fee would be $110. Now in the late fall and winter months, you'll be getting paid more for visiting less... but in the spring and summer months, you'll be working more than you're getting paid.

I feel like you're doing the customer a favor spreading the payments out... and you're also doing yourself a bit of a favor, too... if you have 50 contracts... and they all pay the same... then on the months that you do only one visit, then you have 50 visits that month... but you're getting paid the same as you would be in the summer months when you're making 200 visits... $5,500... Not bad, eh?

landonkade
10-12-2007, 10:46 PM
Quote[/b] (pmblair @ Oct. 12 2007,11:22)]Ok, here's my take on things...

I would put them on a contract. *One flat fee each month. *

(the following was taken from http://www.greenandcleanga.com/services.html)
http://www.greenandcleanga.com/images/yrls.jpg

If you do the math on that, it's 33 visits. *Let's say your services are $40 per visit to their lawn. *So $40 x 33 = $1,320. *Now you want to charge them a flat fee monthly. *So $1,320/12 = $110. *So your monthly fee would be $110. *Now in the late fall and winter months, you'll be getting paid more for visiting less... but in the spring and summer months, you'll be working more than you're getting paid. *

I feel like you're doing the customer a favor spreading the payments out... and you're also doing yourself a bit of a favor, too... if you have 50 contracts... and they all pay the same... then on the months that you do only one visit, then you have 50 visits that month... but you're getting paid the same as you would be in the summer months when you're making 200 visits... $5,500... Not bad, eh?


i have.....
18 of my accounts pay $45 bi-weekly = $90
11 of my accounts pay $70 bi-weekly = $140
7 of my accounts pay $50 bi-weekly = $100
14 of my accounts pay $40 bi-weekly = $80

can u figure that,lol

bringing in the money!!!!!!

pnplawn
10-12-2007, 11:06 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 12 2007,10:43)]I don't know but I think it comes down to how you want to run your business.

Some lcos dont want to use contracts. Others do. Others want a flat fee charged per month across the entire year regardless if they show up to cut a lawn.

Which would work best for you and your situation?
Steve I charge flat monthly charge. Rather I cut it 5 times a month or once month in the winter.

pmblair
10-13-2007, 02:39 AM
Quote[/b] (landonkade @ Oct. 12 2007,6:46)]i have.....
18 of my accounts pay $45 bi-weekly = $90
11 of my accounts pay $70 bi-weekly = $140
7 of my accounts pay $50 bi-weekly = $100
14 of my accounts pay $40 bi-weekly = $80

can u figure that,lol

bringing in the money!!!!!!
Unless my math is wrong (and it may be, since it's so late) that looks like $3,940 per month. That's awesome! What's your average cost to run the business per month?

FourSeasons
10-14-2007, 10:00 PM
So what should he do about getting his money? I have a cutomer that owes me 200 from about 3 months ago. Of course I stopped cutting her grass. But I don't have my money. I just send her an invoice every month. I called and she said she thought she sent it out already. BS

pmblair
10-15-2007, 11:16 AM
I would say be persistent. If they say they sent the payment, ask them to send you a copy of the cancelled check. If they sent it cash, well, that's just their problem....

If you're still owed money from someone and can't get it from them by sending invoices and letters, there's always the option to take them to small claims court. If you want to go that route. Some people just won't pay. Period. So you virtually have to sue them. File it with the court system so that they owe you the money from your invoices PLUS the court costs to file it. Chances are, they'll pay to avoid the litigation that could ensue.

Just my take on things.

Steve
10-15-2007, 12:43 PM
You can also put a lien on their property. That has a tendency to get them to pay.

landonkade
10-15-2007, 04:15 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 15 2007,1:43)]You can also put a lien on their property. That has a tendency to get them to pay.
so how can i go about turning this guy in that is not paying the $193 he owes. We still call him and leave more messages, and he still does not return our calls.

Steve
10-15-2007, 04:28 PM
Here is an interesting article that may be very helpful.

This is also a great experience to go through because it empowers you and you learn how to handle these situations in the future. They won't scare you as much anymore.


Q: How do you put a lien on someone's house when they owe you money?

Putting a Lein on Someone's House

If someone owes you money and you cannot collect then it is necessary to get a court order before you can attach any of their assets. All states have a small claims court with fairly simple procedures and forms that you can file yourself without retaining an attorney. However, in many cases it is adviseable to at least consult with an attorney so you can be sure to follow all of the rules.

Small claims courts are limited in the amount they can award so you will need to check with the local magistrate since each state is different. Once you prevail in court you will then have to file a judgement and attempt to collect according to the laws of your state. Many people think that the court will collect for them but this is incorrect.

If the amount is over the small claims limit you will have to file in a higher court or either settle for the small claims limit. If you decide to go to a higher court then it is best to retain an attorney to assist you.

Have you tried retaining an attorney to write them a demand letter? This will usually cost you less than $200 and is often very effective in collecting past due accounts.

More advice from others:

* In regards to your questions about putting a lein on someone's house when they owe you money. Would not the process be the same for a business owner as an association (non-profit) putting on a lein on a condominiums owner who has not paid for his condo fees? If the answer is yes, than this is a simple process.

Answer

If you have a judgment against your debtor, this is an easy process. Bring a copy of your judgment to the Register of Deeds / Property Assessors office. They will file the judgment with the property paperwork and it has now become a lien against the property.

From here: http://wiki.answers.com/Q....u_money (http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_do_you_put_a_lien_on_someone's_house_when_they _owe_you_money)

landonkade
10-17-2007, 07:44 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 15 2007,5:28)]Here is an interesting article that may be very helpful.

This is also a great experience to go through because it empowers you and you learn how to handle these situations in the future. They won't scare you as much anymore.


Q: How do you put a lien on someone's house when they owe you money?

Putting a Lein on Someone's House

If someone owes you money and you cannot collect then it is necessary to get a court order before you can attach any of their assets. All states have a small claims court with fairly simple procedures and forms that you can file yourself without retaining an attorney. However, in many cases it is adviseable to at least consult with an attorney so you can be sure to follow all of the rules.

Small claims courts are limited in the amount they can award so you will need to check with the local magistrate since each state is different. Once you prevail in court you will then have to file a judgement and attempt to collect according to the laws of your state. Many people think that the court will collect for them but this is incorrect.

If the amount is over the small claims limit you will have to file in a higher court or either settle for the small claims limit. If you decide to go to a higher court then it is best to retain an attorney to assist you.

Have you tried retaining an attorney to write them a demand letter? This will usually cost you less than $200 and is often very effective in collecting past due accounts.

More advice from others:

* ** In regards to your questions about putting a lein on someone's house when they owe you money. Would not the process be the same for a business owner as an association (non-profit) putting on a lein on a condominiums owner who has not paid for his condo fees? If the answer is yes, than this is a simple process.

Answer

If you have a judgment against your debtor, this is an easy process. Bring a copy of your judgment to the Register of Deeds / Property Assessors office. They will file the judgment with the property paperwork and it has now become a lien against the property.

From here: http://wiki.answers.com/Q....u_money (http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_do_you_put_a_lien_on_someone's_house_when_they _owe_you_money)
i called that house that i service for lawn care again today. Finally got in touch with someone there after so many times of calling. they have been paying on time on pervious bills. But this time, like i have said before they owe $193, she tried telling us that they have 30 days after the service is done and then they pay. Y she is doing this now i dont know. she has had great service. We told her no, u have 10 days after the service, and if u want to pay before the 10 days u can. *We charge $50 a cut for 2 acres bi-weekly, cause my wife went to school with her daughter, the yard is regular $80 a cut. So my wife told me to quit servicing them, due to them taking so long to pay, cause it could happen again. You knwo we have bills to pay, we cant wait forever. She said she is going to pay everything in full, having it in the mail tomorrow


Gopher do u have any cancel letters for late payments, that we can no long service them, or a letter u can think of for this situation

Steve
10-17-2007, 07:52 PM
How about this.

Cancel Customer Letter

Dear Customer,

We are sorry, but due to extenuating circumstances we will no longer be able to provide our service to you. Please be advised that this letter serves as notice of discontinuation of services. We will continue to service your lawn for the duration of the next 30 days so that you may have time to locate a suitable replacement. If you are able to find a replacement prior to the completion of 30 days, kindly notify our office and we will discontinue service at that time.

Thank You,

or something like that.

landonkade
10-17-2007, 07:55 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 17 2007,8:52)]How about this.

Cancel Customer Letter

Dear Customer,

We are sorry, but due to extenuating circumstances we will no longer be able to provide our service to you. Please be advised that this letter serves as notice of discontinuation of services. We will continue to service your lawn for the duration of the next 30 days so that you may have time to locate a suitable replacement. If you are able to find a replacement prior to the completion of 30 days, kindly notify our office and we will discontinue service at that time.

Thank You,

or something like that.
sounds good, but the service is coming up in 3 days, and my wife dont want me to service them anymore. because we dont want to tie any more money up with them and not get it. she said since she is sending the money and it took so long, just get the money and drop them

Steve
10-17-2007, 08:12 PM
Well, you could just edit it to suit your needs. This was taken from our list of free letters.

Let us know how it works out and I agree with your wife. It sounds like this customer is having financial problems and you want to limit your liability with them.

landonkade
10-17-2007, 08:16 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 17 2007,9:12)]Well, you could just edit it to suit your needs. This was taken from our list of free letters.

Let us know how it works out and I agree with your wife. It sounds like this customer is having financial problems and you want to limit your liability with them.
this is the only thing we can use out of the cancel letter below, so we need to make up the rest of it to sound professional right? Probaly about 3 or 4 more sentances


We are sorry, but due to extenuating circumstances we will no longer be able to provide our service to you. Please be advised that this letter serves as notice of discontinuation of services.

Steve
10-17-2007, 10:05 PM
maybe add "effective immediately."

landonkade
10-17-2007, 10:09 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Oct. 17 2007,11:05)]maybe add "effective immediately."
here is my letter to them, let me know if i need to make any changes:


J & M Lawn Care:




Dear Mr. Ellison,

I would like to thank you again for choosing J & M Lawn Care for your lawn care needs. We hope you were more than satisfied with our performance. It is important to note that J & M Lawn Care appreciated and values every customer relationship. Making you a satisfied customer is our top priority. We are sorry, but due to extenuating circumstances we will no longer be able to provide our service to you. Please be advised that this letter serves as notice of discontinuation of services effective immediately. If u have any further questions or concerns, please donít hesitate to contact us at 618-1916

Thank you for your time and consideration


Sinceraly,

Matt Hollerman
Owner


Servicing Counties
Houston. Henry. Coffee. Dale.

Little's
10-17-2007, 10:14 PM
Not sure about the state you are in, but here in CA. people legally have 30 days to pay. Sounds like maybe you could lighten up a little and give them a chance to get their finances together. You said they have been good payers in the past, right? Sometimes people need a little extra time.
Sorry for being right to the point.