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How do I approach selling a yearly contract

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  • How do I approach selling a yearly contract

    Hey my name is brad I started my business back in February and have been having a hard time getting customers to agree to sign a year contract. I do a great job on their yard they tell me I do. What ways could help me, could I offer a discount on a service with a contract? Please help

  • #2
    You want them to sign a contract for year round property service, or do you want them to sign a contract for per visit work?

    If you are servicing them weekly/bi weekly don't sweat the contract, continue doing what you're doing.

    If you're looking to sell a package to a customer to maintain their property sell them on the value of having a professional maintain everything so it is always well manicured and taken care of.

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    • #3
      My contracts pretty much say I'll give you a cut either weekly or bi weekly march thru October and November thru February you will receive one visit to keep everything blew off. Any additional services are extra. I don't know if this is a good of offering the work sounds like I'm just throwing it in their face. I got the contract from a friend.

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      • #4
        Here is my contract for residential mowing customers "Just so we both understand you want (this is where I cover the work to be done) Each week. That will be x per visit, If your not home you can leave a check under the door mat.

        For PROPERTY MAINTENANCE- Mow, fertilize, weed control, pest control, hedge trim, tree trim, flower bed weeding, mulch install, etc. I use a written contract it about 23 pages long, I paid 500 bucks to the lawyer to draw it so I am not going to give it to you for free. This is for large residential, commercial, and industrial accounts.

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        • #5
          No one around in Southern Ohio does contracts with individual clients unless it's for the full service year round. Here's a saying I usually go with, "Contracts are for people that cannot be trusted." With that said, if someone looks shady, I won't take the job without them signing something that says in the liking of, "I XXXX agree to pay in full at completion of XXXX." I make sure they know how I work, my methods of payment, etc. This one kid (I'm saying this and I'm the same age, 20) started up a Lawn care business this year and would only do contracts. He got about 8 lawns from what I can tell going around town. Since then, none of us "other guys" have seen him around since Aug 1. People don't want to be locked into paying for the same thing all year long. Get loyal clients that are willing to pay you for the same thing all year long without the contract. Those are the good clients that most likely won't be stolen from you. Good luck!
          [CENTER]CENTER]

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          • #6
            have been having a hard time getting customers to agree to sign a year contract.
            Something to consider is that it might be tough to get a customer to sign an annual contract with you if you have not been in business at least a year. So next year might be easier for you on this.

            Another thing to consider is offering spring and fall cleanups in your contract price. If it is going to be an annual lawn care contract, you should include the services that will need to be performed all year. That also includes other services mentioned like hedge trimming etc.

            When you put this package together and show the customer that their monthly fee for this package is cheaper for them monthly than if they were to only spread those payments out across the mowing season.

            Does this help?

            What kind of resistance have you gotten so far when it comes to contracts?
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            • #7
              Yes that helps thank you for the advice, I actually got one signed today and I am planning on doing a lot of work for the guy over the fall an winter like mulching, aerating, seeding, fertilizing and installing a drain pipe. But a lot of the customers just say they don't want to be locked in a contract.

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              • #8
                But a lot of the customers just say they don't want to be locked in a contract.
                There are a bunch of free lawn care contracts on the forum here.

                I am sure some of them have wording in them to allow a customer to get out of the contract. They shouldn't feel like it is a trap. It's more to spell out what services you will be providing, at what price, and how they will be paying for it.

                You can have a cancellation clause in your contract to counter when a potential customer says they don't want to be locked in, but you do want them to pay for all services completed if they do leave.

                So with that said, they may want to end the contract and still owe $x of dollars because their payment plan is spread out over 12 months. Make sure you account for that if they want out.
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                • #9
                  a lot of the customers just say they don't want to be locked in a contract.
                  I have the same issue with first year customers. What I do is, which some do bite going into the second year. If a customer paid me $900 over the season (6 payments at $150 per month) to mow their lawn. I would take that $900 and divide it by 12, which comes out to be $75 each month for the entire year. Some much rather budget $75 a month for 12 months then $150 a month for 6 months.

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                  • #10
                    I have the same issue with first year customers. What I do is, which some do bite going into the second year. If a customer paid me $900 over the season (6 payments at $150 per month) to mow their lawn. I would take that $900 and divide it by 12, which comes out to be $75 each month for the entire year. Some much rather budget $75 a month for 12 months then $150 a month for 6 months.
                    Does this affect cash flow at all?

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                    • #11
                      Does this affect cash flow at all?
                      I only have a few accounts that pay monthly all year long. Since I do not offer snow removal, its nice to get some money coming in over the winter months.

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                      • #12
                        I only have a few accounts that pay monthly all year long. Since I do not offer snow removal, its nice to get some money coming in over the winter months.
                        How do you handle it if a annual contract customer wants out of the contract mid-year for whatever reason? Is there a penalty of any sorts?
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                        • #13
                          How do you handle it if a annual contract customer wants out of the contract mid-year for whatever reason? Is there a penalty of any sorts?
                          So far, I have been lucky and have not lost any accounts. I currently have no penalty if a customer decides to cancel my service. Having a prepaid policy really helps so if a customer ever did leave, I would owe them the balance if any up to the point they canceled.

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