Lawn Care Business Forum Lawn Care Business Book Lawn Care Business Blog Lawn Care Software
Home Forum Contract & Flyer Templates Blog Software Videos Podcast Calculators / Estimators Store Mower Review Design It Yourself Lawn Business School

Go Back   GopherHaul Landscaping & Lawn Care Business Marketing Forum > Lawn Care, Landscaping, and Property Management Forums > General Talk

General Talk If it doesn't fit anywhere else, post it here.

Residential Contracts


General Talk

If it doesn't fit anywhere else, post it here.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #41  
Old 04-07-2013, 08:18 AM
warbuff's Avatar
warbuff warbuff is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY
Posts: 67
Rep Power: 5
warbuff is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SNethercutt View Post
Contracts aren't really for mowing. I use them in the following manner.

Customer Josh is paying $200 a month to have his lawn mowed. So he budgets $200 monthly to pay his lawn guy. Totaling about $1600 a year, for cuttings.

I approach josh and say for $300 a month we can mulch once a year, weed beds monthly, keep hedges trimmed, fertilize, control ants, and mow.

Josh says I can get that for only $100 more a month? You say "yes" on a 12 month contract. And you use the contracts to protect both you and him.

Josh knows he can afford $200 a month. Now he has to figure if he can afford $300.

If customer agrees, you just turned your $1600 a year customer to $3600 a year!

Contract worth it.. I say hell yes. What about that isn't worth it. I got this exact contract. Same numbers. I spent $250 on mulch and 4 hours on initial clean up and mulch job. Now its just maintaining..... when the weeds get controlled you don't have a problem anymore.

How anyone says its isn't worth it. Beyond me.

As far as court goes, apparently people don't fully understand the legal system.

I take josh to court because he failed to pay. He has breached the contract. He owes me for months we have performed services, plus the breach of contract penalty, which in my case is 50% of remaining contract value.

If josh doesn't pay this amount. I start keeping track of my time I have spent trying to collect this debt, typing letter, making phone calls. Also keep up with any expenses you have trying to collect, such as sending certified mail, fuel cost and so on.

I also accumulate late fees on past dues accounts at 19.99% MONTHLY.

After 30 days of non payment, I send a certified letter stating if not played within 15 days criminal charges will be filed, and a civil suite as well.

Any cost you have during a civil suite process, can be added into the lawsuit. Even attorneys fees.

So say josh owes me $300 plus 19.99% interest plus a late fee and the 50% of remaining contract. So he now owes me $2,000.

Plus my time and cost. My time at my normal rate in course of busjness per hour. So I have 2 hours in it plus the cost of mail and fuel. So that's another $200.

He owes me $2,200.

Now there is court fees and all that up front.

Now I am suing for $2,500.

I will win. I have a contract and clauses within it to protect me from deadbeats. I suggest any contract you write or get offline, you have an attorney make sure that your contract follows the bylaws of your state. If you have a goofy contract with some off the wall crap in it, the judge will look to you, as the writer of the contract to explain in detail and tell which laws support why that should be upheld.

I leave no out for a contract customer. Its iron clad. Why? Because someone will let you mulch and do big jibs and then try to cancel. I don't play that round. You sign the line, your in it for the long haul. Like a car note its not beneficial to get out of that contract agreement.

Just having little fun and possibly playing devils advocate...
What if your client dies in court of a heart attack after the crap storm you've unleashed on him (LOL) and his estate tanks 10 years to settle (Ouch), only to find there is no money left in the estate to pay the debt (Ugh) and what little was left of the client's assets are gone and there's nothing left worth fighting for (Bummer)?

I was pretty amused myself till I realized my kids are fighting already and its only 9:30 am on my only day off argh Karma has caught up with me!
__________________

Clean, Quality Maintenance Services that Exceed Your Expectations.
Find Us On Facebook: ML Landscaping Poughkeepsie NY
Chance Favors the Prepared Mind...

Last edited by warbuff; 04-07-2013 at 08:22 AM.
Reply With Quote

Stop guess-timating. Learn how to estimate and make money! $$$
Mow Time Estimator Lawn Care Price Estimator Mulch and Topsoil Calculator Snow Plow Estimate Calculator


  #42  
Old 04-07-2013, 09:48 AM
SNethercutt SNethercutt is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 202
Rep Power: 2
SNethercutt is on a distinguished road
Default

Lawn boy,

Customers will get upset with you anytime you change anything. There are people out there that hate change.

But anytime someone gets upset about your change just explain that you have to make changes to your business to better handle the ways of the world that year, in order for your business to run as smoothly as possible to ensure you can be there next week to care for your customers.

Me on the other hand I invoice after services are performed. I keep up with all accounts and bill every customer either at the first or middle of then month. Whichever they choose. I have had nobody stiff me since I started this. The exception is for people who will owe more than $500 at the end of the month, they pay upfront or half the bill every two weeks. Just business practice that I don't carry accounts greater than $500 dollars.
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 04-07-2013, 09:48 AM
kslawn kslawn is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Up,Michigan
Posts: 464
Rep Power: 2
kslawn is on a distinguished road
Default

I start out the season by sending a letter (feb) to confirm the customer wants the same service as last year..then we get contracts signed (mar)...& I have them all pay by the 5th of every month...I send out a 'reminder of payment due' on the 20th of each month & they are due by the 5th of the next month..LawnBoy & I are similar in that except I do have most sign contracts,but I dont make them,I give them a choice, & I've never had many problems with payment other than being late sometimes & I call & we resolve the issue if possable...very rarely have I had to disscontinue service, but by doing so , usually is good incentive for them to pay!I also have my commercials pay that way too!
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 04-08-2013, 06:14 PM
GreenBlue's Avatar
GreenBlue GreenBlue is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kansas
Posts: 248
Rep Power: 2
GreenBlue is on a distinguished road
Default

Ok this is really confusing the crap out of me. If you don't have a contract, and you'd prefer that a customer pays monthly, even if its during the mowing season and you don't get customers paying everything single month of the year, then how do you get a customer to understand that this is how you bill? I'm getting what people are saying about how they bill their customers and when they bill their customers, but what I'm failing at getting and having someone explain is how do you explain this to a customer and what do you say to the customer to get this type of an agreement in terms of monthly billing?
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 04-08-2013, 06:41 PM
SNethercutt SNethercutt is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 202
Rep Power: 2
SNethercutt is on a distinguished road
Default

If your just mowing, bill ahead or invoice after whatever fits you. 12 month payments arent for just mowing. But if you have a customer who has beds they don't take care of their self and always bug you with doing something that's when you try to perk their interest in a contract to do all the things and draw payment out over 12 months. Otherwise aren't doing much good for yourself drawing mowing payment out like that.
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 04-08-2013, 06:50 PM
GreenBlue's Avatar
GreenBlue GreenBlue is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kansas
Posts: 248
Rep Power: 2
GreenBlue is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SNethercutt View Post
If your just mowing, bill ahead or invoice after whatever fits you. 12 month payments arent for just mowing. But if you have a customer who has beds they don't take care of their self and always bug you with doing something that's when you try to perk their interest in a contract to do all the things and draw payment out over 12 months. Otherwise aren't doing much good for yourself drawing mowing payment out like that.
Thanks for the information, if I decide to go with a contract I "MIGHT" (have to put that in there before "someone" freaks out) consider that, and I am well aware that a contract wouldn't be for just mowing and would include other services, but this still doesn't answer how you are going to explain monthly billing to a customer so they understand your billing method. I get doing your services and billing every month and all that wonderful stuff, but I'm looking deeper into this by figuring out how you explain this......
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 04-08-2013, 08:38 PM
SNethercutt SNethercutt is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 202
Rep Power: 2
SNethercutt is on a distinguished road
Default

ok I get it.

First you have to figure out if the customer would even concider a contract. do they get alot of services from you... fertilizing, mowing, mulching, weeds and so on. if so continue reading.

when they mention to you, doing something extra, this is a good time to bring up....

this is my pitch line....

Would you concider a yearly contract. What it is, is I basically add up all of the services you would request for the next 12 months, and instead of you paying for mulching at one time and coming a few hundred out of pocket, I am basically financing it out over 12 months so that I still recieve an income during months that are normally down time for me.

We can build a custome package to include things that are custome fit for you, and you are not paying for services you do not want or need.

The benefits of the contract are that your property is always professionaly maintained by us. It keeps you from having to spend your time off in the yard, and gives you more time with your family.

Also, instead of paying our normal hourly rate, you get a discount of $10 per estimated hour for any services performed outside of the contract. You also get a discount on all services being performed in the contract, such as instead of paying $85per yard of mulch installed you will only be paying $75, and the cost is drawn out over 12 months.

all in all you have to make sure your target customer is in the position to need this. If you go to a customer who doesnt need this, there going to sound intrigued until they hear the price then run you off thinking your trying to get over on them. My biggest luck with these contract is business owners. They love these contracts. They dont have time for yard crap, and whats $350 a month to someone who makes damn good money?
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 04-08-2013, 09:37 PM
GreenBlue's Avatar
GreenBlue GreenBlue is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kansas
Posts: 248
Rep Power: 2
GreenBlue is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SNethercutt View Post
ok I get it.

First you have to figure out if the customer would even concider a contract. do they get alot of services from you... fertilizing, mowing, mulching, weeds and so on. if so continue reading.

when they mention to you, doing something extra, this is a good time to bring up....

this is my pitch line....

Would you concider a yearly contract. What it is, is I basically add up all of the services you would request for the next 12 months, and instead of you paying for mulching at one time and coming a few hundred out of pocket, I am basically financing it out over 12 months so that I still recieve an income during months that are normally down time for me.

We can build a custome package to include things that are custome fit for you, and you are not paying for services you do not want or need.

The benefits of the contract are that your property is always professionaly maintained by us. It keeps you from having to spend your time off in the yard, and gives you more time with your family.

Also, instead of paying our normal hourly rate, you get a discount of $10 per estimated hour for any services performed outside of the contract. You also get a discount on all services being performed in the contract, such as instead of paying $85per yard of mulch installed you will only be paying $75, and the cost is drawn out over 12 months.

all in all you have to make sure your target customer is in the position to need this. If you go to a customer who doesnt need this, there going to sound intrigued until they hear the price then run you off thinking your trying to get over on them. My biggest luck with these contract is business owners. They love these contracts. They dont have time for yard crap, and whats $350 a month to someone who makes damn good money?
Ok, forget the contract stuff, I'm not asking about the contract stuff. Let's go about it this way shall we? Maybe you'll see what I'm asking.....


Customer: "Can you mow my grass?"

Business Owner: "Of course I can."

Customer: " How much would you charge me?"

Business Owner: "Well for this size yard it'd be $40.00."

Customer: "And can you explain how you bill?"


Do you see what I'm looking for now?
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 04-08-2013, 10:31 PM
SNethercutt SNethercutt is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 202
Rep Power: 2
SNethercutt is on a distinguished road
Default

Well how are you planning to bill them?

If its pay in advance, if your a big compaany its easy to say I require payment upfront.... what big business is going to run off with $100.

Small guy, chances are someone isnt giving you $200 up front in good faith your not on drugs and running away with their money.

ut you just tell people how you bill. I tell them "payment for first service is due at time of service after that, we will out on the 1st due by the 15th or bill on the 15th due on the 30th."

bill me on the 15th <**- customer reply.

ok your payment will be due by the 30th of each month.

Then with their first invoice or customer packet you have a nice letter stating the following.

Payments not made on time will incur a late fee of $30 and add another $15 for each week payment is late. If you cat afford your bill at the time its due for whatever reason, let me know a minimum of 7 days before its due, and we will re-evaluate your status as a customer of our company.

Its easy. They have agreed to be your customer. but most people probably wont be handing you money upfront to start out. later down the road existing customers might, but not new customers. its hard to pull of unless your well established.
Reply With Quote
  #50  
Old 04-08-2013, 10:52 PM
GreenBlue's Avatar
GreenBlue GreenBlue is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kansas
Posts: 248
Rep Power: 2
GreenBlue is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SNethercutt View Post
Well how are you planning to bill them?

If its pay in advance, if your a big compaany its easy to say I require payment upfront.... what big business is going to run off with $100.

Small guy, chances are someone isnt giving you $200 up front in good faith your not on drugs and running away with their money.

ut you just tell people how you bill. I tell them "payment for first service is due at time of service after that, we will out on the 1st due by the 15th or bill on the 15th due on the 30th."

bill me on the 15th <**- customer reply.

ok your payment will be due by the 30th of each month.

Then with their first invoice or customer packet you have a nice letter stating the following.

Payments not made on time will incur a late fee of $30 and add another $15 for each week payment is late. If you cat afford your bill at the time its due for whatever reason, let me know a minimum of 7 days before its due, and we will re-evaluate your status as a customer of our company.

Its easy. They have agreed to be your customer. but most people probably wont be handing you money upfront to start out. later down the road existing customers might, but not new customers. its hard to pull of unless your well established.
Finally we are getting somewhere, that takes care of input from SNethercutt LOL.......LawnBoy where are you, how do you go about doing this?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
3/4 Acre Residential lxarth Online Lawn Care Estimator - Help me bid this job 16 06-25-2012 06:03 PM
Residential or Commercial??? mortonslawn Starting a lawn care business. 10 10-26-2010 07:07 PM
commercial vs residential Floridajoe Lawn Maintenance / Lawn Renovation 18 06-05-2010 02:24 AM
My area is FULL of residential! Travor Starting a lawn care business. 14 08-10-2009 02:48 PM
Commercial vs. Residential musician/lawnman General Business Discussions 40 07-04-2008 08:54 AM

» Recent Threads
  RatingTitle, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views
leaf removal
Double J LLC
10-03-2014 05:24 PM
Today 01:08 AM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
25 2,524
Hello from Kentucky
TRV
09-30-2014 06:42 PM
Yesterday 07:45 PM
by TRV
8 1,344
These are the days on...
ExtremeLawncareServices
03-22-2014 10:12 AM
Yesterday 07:00 PM
by ExtremeLawncareServices
176 14,160
Hi from IL
steveinil
Yesterday 02:07 PM
Yesterday 02:07 PM
by steveinil
0 35
WNY saying Hi.
Sargewesser
Yesterday 07:27 AM
Yesterday 07:27 AM
by Sargewesser
0 41
Group Buying Software as...
ferona
Yesterday 06:49 AM
Yesterday 06:49 AM
by ferona
0 41
How to: Use Thumbtack...
acrajchel
11-17-2014 06:39 PM
11-24-2014 07:58 PM
by thom
17 600
How much do you up sell...
Essex Groundskeeping
11-23-2014 07:13 PM
11-24-2014 06:29 PM
by stevef1201
8 202
This sucks...
Matther777
09-18-2014 05:56 PM
11-24-2014 05:49 PM
by biglee
16 3,227
Pressure Washing...
WesleySnips
07-31-2014 07:13 PM
11-24-2014 04:32 PM
by acrajchel
4 679
New website
Chilehead
11-20-2014 04:39 PM
11-23-2014 07:40 PM
by Just for Cuts
12 329
My site is on fronts page
tbtigers03
11-14-2014 05:58 PM
11-22-2014 10:49 PM
by Just for Cuts
16 552
Pics for website
tbtigers03
11-21-2014 05:40 PM
11-22-2014 10:01 PM
by Just for Cuts
3 180
Peco Bagger
AGPS
11-18-2014 02:20 PM
11-22-2014 05:56 PM
by AGPS
9 357
Beginner Mistakes:...
Steve
01-31-2007 12:45 PM
11-22-2014 02:42 PM
by stevef1201
22 6,223
Contract or no contract?
TRV
11-20-2014 09:18 PM
11-21-2014 09:33 PM
by TRV
3 215
Hi to you NOTHERNERS
stevef1201
11-11-2014 05:56 PM
11-21-2014 08:02 PM
by stevef1201
4 366
Billboards for marketing
ExtremeLawncareServices
11-16-2014 08:39 PM
11-21-2014 07:05 PM
by acrajchel
13 428
Belt dealer problem
googus
11-21-2014 08:45 AM
11-21-2014 06:36 PM
by Steve
2 161
Good help is hard to find
Hanks Lawn Care Services
11-19-2014 03:27 PM
11-21-2014 06:32 PM
by Steve
7 275
What is going on with...
biglee
11-14-2014 03:04 PM
11-20-2014 02:50 PM
by biglee
40 1,013
My advice for new guys
avetslawncare
11-15-2014 09:32 AM
11-19-2014 01:47 PM
by biglee
10 556
Lawn Care business...
crieg122
10-23-2014 02:23 PM
11-19-2014 12:39 PM
by acrajchel
28 1,922
raking leaves ?
robert8509
10-22-2014 10:19 PM
11-18-2014 04:24 PM
by acrajchel
14 1,507
Leaf removal
madmedic8575
10-24-2014 05:14 PM
11-17-2014 07:34 PM
by acrajchel
6 1,238
sod job
SGlawncare
10-30-2014 09:21 PM
11-17-2014 07:10 PM
by acrajchel
7 826
Customer wants me to...
Mr. Mow
11-09-2014 07:13 AM
11-17-2014 06:48 PM
by acrajchel
10 604
Hello!
Brian3137
11-11-2014 07:15 PM
11-17-2014 06:46 PM
by acrajchel
14 530
small biz in Phoenix,AZ
anthonyramos1
11-08-2014 09:35 PM
11-17-2014 05:59 PM
by acrajchel
2 370
Client won't pay...
WesleySnips
10-30-2014 03:53 PM
11-17-2014 05:37 PM
by acrajchel
22 1,439
Government contracts
avetslawncare
11-15-2014 08:50 AM
11-17-2014 12:59 PM
by Steve
2 300
Need help on deciding a...
Brian3137
11-10-2014 06:32 PM
11-17-2014 12:44 PM
by Steve
12 569
West cost lawn prices
SGlawncare
10-09-2014 10:51 PM
11-16-2014 07:54 AM
by stevef1201
8 1,657
So how do you guys...
Mr. Mow
10-26-2014 08:55 AM
11-15-2014 08:44 AM
by avetslawncare
14 1,771
Truck, Trailer,...
hawthornelawncare
12-23-2011 01:01 AM
11-13-2014 08:35 AM
by jrs.landscaping
81 31,927
The most dangerous part...
Steve
10-06-2014 03:45 PM
11-12-2014 05:05 PM
by stevef1201
14 1,751
A little hang up in snow...
stevef1201
11-08-2014 07:05 AM
11-12-2014 12:51 PM
by Steve
4 486
Bi-weekly winter...
lxarth
11-04-2014 08:37 PM
11-12-2014 10:06 AM
by WesleySnips
9 684
taking first steps...
sizemorelawncare
11-10-2014 08:24 PM
11-11-2014 01:21 PM
by Steve
1 376
Back Pack Blower
Ian Lovejoy
11-09-2014 08:41 AM
11-11-2014 08:12 AM
by Just for Cuts
4 433
Business Cards
crieg122
10-25-2014 01:03 PM
11-11-2014 07:56 AM
by Just for Cuts
12 1,384
How the unregister?
alive101
11-04-2014 07:39 AM
11-10-2014 01:48 PM
by Steve
4 656
Belt adjustment question
googus
11-05-2014 06:43 AM
11-10-2014 01:38 PM
by Steve
5 557
New parking area
ExtremeLawncareServices
11-07-2014 09:47 PM
11-10-2014 01:25 PM
by Steve
2 397
Podcast
Shark1611
11-07-2014 05:42 PM
11-10-2014 11:41 AM
by Steve
1 360
hi, from Minnesota
rjklohn
11-07-2014 02:21 AM
11-07-2014 01:44 PM
by Steve
1 377
New to snow plowing
SS.Lawncare
11-05-2014 04:00 PM
11-07-2014 01:21 PM
by Steve
6 631
New Member
tonyap
11-05-2014 10:35 PM
11-07-2014 01:15 PM
by Steve
1 419
New to the business
jcurr33
11-05-2014 03:21 PM
11-07-2014 01:11 PM
by Steve
1 472
Lines
Matther777
11-04-2014 02:19 PM
11-07-2014 12:54 PM
by Steve
1 510
» Popular Tags
4wd 4x4 aerocore apartment complex bark bid billy goat brushcutter care charge collections decorating edging employee problems equipment rental ferris foreman four wheel drive gopherhaul grass hills how much to charge husqvarna hydraulic installation introduction jobs landscape services lawn lawn care lawn care business lawn care business seo lawn care business show lawn care business website lawn care business website seo lawn care seo lawn care website lawn care website seo managing a lawn care business marketing monthly mr dave mulch ordinance past due per hour service podcast push versus ride redmax reo scag v-ride seo shreaded small engine repair snow sprayer starting a business starting a lawn care business steve sulky toro tractor auger trailer trimmer rack truck new used landscape turfgrass consulting up sell employee walk behind won't return wood wright stander rh
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.1.0

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:15 AM.


(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:15 AM.

(C) 2011 Riggs Publications - Terms of use & Privacy Policy