1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Anybody ever UNplow for nonpayment?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Alan, Dec 12, 2000.

  1. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    I'm just curious, has anybody here ever put snow BACK if the dweeb wouldn't pay? I've got one that I'm about to do that to and to hell with legal hassles resulting from it. Guy paid part of his bill but skipped three plwoings in the middle of the year. Won't return calls, won't answer mail. Arrogant little IBMer jerk, I really think that UNplowing him and sending him a credit slip would be fun.
     
  2. machine

    machine Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    I Never done that, but I had a good laugh when reading your post. I will kept it in mind when someone plans on reniging. Though I have piled up a large amount of snow on a buddy's cars doors which made it very difficut for him and girlfiend to get into the car after they had been drinking all night at the bar. You should of seen thier faces when they couldn't find thier car.
     
  3. RB

    RB Senior Member
    Messages: 197

    I had a friend that got stiffed on a big leaf clean up. When the customer complained that she never agreed to that big of a clean up the guy told her, "that's ok, I understand. I still have the leaves in my truck and I'll drop them off next time I'm in your area." The lady freaked! She said if you come close to my lawn I'll call the cops.

    Leaves were never dropped off.


    Send him a certified ltr. from the local Magistrate. That usually works for me when I've had a deadbeat customer.
     
  4. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    We plow the local diner, have for years now. A few years ago they had a night manager who loved to give grief at any oportunity. Soooo,, one day I had our small tractor and snowblower over there opening up sidewalks and stuff and I got this hot flash to harass Sherry. The snow was just right to pile up from the blower so I cleared 3/4 of the way around her car and built this wall along the drivers side. Never touched the car, piled the snow up about 6" away from the door. She was SOME HOT when she came out that night. First impression was, "Oh great, Al cleaned around my car". Second impression was, "I'm gonna fix that SOB good when I catch his sorry A$$!"
     
  5. John Allin

    John Allin PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,327

    My first year in business I had a resident that didn't pay me. In July I put the plow back on the Bronco, drove to his house and parked on his front lawn. Knocked on the door and handed him the (past due) bill and explained that if he didn't pay me right then and there - he was getting one FREE plow..... right then and there.

    He paid me.

    My lawyer told me never to do that again.

    I didn't.

    But I got my money.....
     
  6. TLS

    TLS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    Had a neighbor of a commercial lot complain once about where I stacked the snow. He said it was flooding his yard. I told him that this is XYZ companies' snow, and where it goes when it melts isn't my problem. Plus I have no choice except to put it right there where I always do. (on XYZ's property) He then contacted Mr. XYZ and told them, I then got a call and said that he was confronted by Mr. Neighbor about snow piles. Mr. XYZ knew that the piles had to be either where I put them, or up against his busy loading docks.(not possible) Well this just pissed me off that Mr. Neighbor bothered Mr XYZ, and Mr. XYZ had to call and bother me. So next snow, I accidentally left a nice pile of snow directly in front of Mr. Neighbors driveway. Not noticiable as it being from a plow, because it was wet and slushy. I think he got the point, and has never bothered me since.

    Just got to be careful as this is illegal, and looking back was pretty stupid. It did work though!
     
  7. lawnboy106

    lawnboy106 Junior Member
    Messages: 1

    I was plowing a commercial lot (shopping center) one night around midnight. In this shopping center was a bar/restaurant. Some jokester who decided to be cute cut right behind my stakebody while I was backing up for my next run. He was close enough that I had to jamb on the brakes to keep from hitting the dumb-ass. Then, instead of parking on the cleared area of the lot....he parks right on the snow that I'm getting paid to clear!!!! WELL, NOW I'M PISSED! When he and his buddies went into the bar.....I plowed the car in on all 4 sides. When I was done, the wheels of his car where 3" off of the ground and he had to dig through a four foot thick wall of snow just to get to his doors!
     
  8. landscaper3

    landscaper3 Senior Member
    Messages: 309

    We had a customer owe us for one months service, only $200.00 but still enough to make me upset. I called her about it and even told her we can put you on a payment plan she told me to go F-Off so when next unexpected storm dumped 10" Somehow they had a 5foot banking in the middle of the driveway (boy how did that get there?) She called us up complaing and told us to plow her out!! I siad when I get there you give me $200plus additional $50.00 for that service in cash! She siad no way and hung up. 2 hours later phone rang again she cant find anyone and for me to come up to plow she has the money, I siad I will be there whithin an hour. I get there I ask for the money she says when im done I said no I need the money now and she agian rudly said after, I siad see you later and left. I almost think it was worth the $200.00 dollers to see the look on her face when I left. Thats why everyone is on contracts now at least if I decide to go to court I have a signed contract.
     
  9. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    Back about 5 or 6 years ago we had a residential that had a house out of state and wanted this one plowed from when the came up ride there sleds. Big circle drive, nice and long, big huge house. Well they didn't pay us for december or january and we knew they were comming up in febuary. So I called them and they told me that they would drop a check off when they were up next week. Well no check, I knew they were leaving sunday morning the end of school vacation week. Well one night we decided to haul some snow off a lot, so we got 3 tri axel loads packed in real tight. Went and dumped them in the driveway one after another, this was about 2 am.

    They called me at about 9 am, asking if I could come plow the snow that appeared. I said sure I be right over if you have the money for febuary, march, december, and january. I showed up with a tri axel and a trailer with a JD 540 loader on it, and went to work, after 2 hours the drive was clear, with nice tall bankings all the way down the sides. I asked for my money, they said it was in the mail, well I said the loader isn't moving till i get my money. No problem they said we will just go over the 4' snow bankings all they way up the drive. Well that idea failed, they gave me my money, I moved the loader put it on the trialer, and took off. BTW we had the loader loaded the night before. Needless to say they sold that house in the spring, and we plow for the new owner. The new owner is one of our best customers.

    Geoff
     
  10. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    I wouldn't recomend this practice and won't do it again, because it is dare I say mad business.

    Geoff
     
  11. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    Geoff,, I like that approach!!! I'm really contemplating blocking Mr. IBM, I'm pretty much at the point where I don't much care what happens, this guy needs an education in the worst way.
     
  12. SlimJim Z71

    SlimJim Z71 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,031

    When I was working for someone else, we threatened to. She called the cops. We didn't put it back.

    -Tim
     
  13. Psyclopse

    Psyclopse Member
    Messages: 94

    I had a customer a few years back who wanted me to plow a path up to his front door in order for a furniture truck to make a delivery. I told him that something like that really should be done by hand since it was over grass and the risk of damaging the ground would be high. He got rude and matter-of-factly told me that he was a paying customer and I better do as he asked- he didn't care what happened to the ground. I tried my best to keep the plow on the high side but I got into the dirt- alot.

    I went across the street to get a cup of coffee and the furniture truck showed up and backed up to the house. I went over to collect and he refused to pay, and told me that I WILL replace that dirt at MY expense.

    It just so happened I had 2 pickups full of dirt removed from a construction site I was working at. We dumped them right in front of the furniture truck.

    The guy took me to court and the judge found enough humor in the situation to throw it out- AFTER he told the customer to pay for my plowind AND the dirt delivery! To make good with the poor furniture store who's truck I blocked in, I cleared their parking lot for free 3 times, after which they became a customer.
     
  14. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    We were stacking and moving snow in 1996, and a guy parked his truck right where we were stacking snow. We asked nicely for him not to park there, and he replied in a not so nice manner, so we kept stacking rigth into his bed, and then over the sides of the bed, and then all around the bed.
    We finished up and left, and we never got a call from the facility.
    We also have had people that were less than fair with us, and garge doors have been know to be plowed in. I usually wait several years before doing so, so that we are less likely to be thought of as the culprit.
    Dino
     
  15. OBRYANMAINT

    OBRYANMAINT PlowSite.com Veteran
    from ohio
    Messages: 534

    have not done it in my business but when i was around 10 and we would go door to door shoveling drives we put the snow back on a drive because a lady said that it did not look like it took enough time to clear it for the pre approved price she said it was worth half and i said no prob i will put half back , and did

    i think it is lessons like these that happen to all of us that make us more savy business men ,sometimes now you can see them coming and i know now to pass
     
  16. Deere John

    Deere John Senior Member
    Messages: 410

    We have had some problems - all from people who live on shared private roads. Occasionally, one will feel he is owed the winter free by me, and refuses to pay. I usually try to initially make light of it and say that, as a tree-service guy and logger most of the time, its suprising how crazy people think we must be to do what we do. Then I quote "You know, In my experience, nobody has ever stiffed an honest man who owns a backhoe and lots of big chain saws". I add my best bug-eyed grin.

    We part, him having my account, and usually the cheque shows up in the mail several days later.

    It's lawyer proof.
     
  17. Rooster

    Rooster Member
    from Kansas
    Messages: 650

    Unplow for non-payment. Did it once!

    Had contract written up by a lawyer, contract stated that the job was priority and would be put on a priority list in order that those contracts were received. Also in about size 4 font (print very very small)I added that any not pays snow will be replaced or returned to where it was plowed.

    This customer did not pay, said he didn't have to, so snow was returned to his property as stated in the contract.

    2 weeks later I got the papers for court, called my lawyer, first he laughed, we went to court, told the judge that every thing was in plain english and the customer sign the contract stating he had read and understood all part of the agreement.

    Judgement in my favor, got paid 2 once for plowing, once for unplowing. Don't think I would do it now, but this occured 15 years ago.
     
  18. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge Member
    Messages: 44

    I've had to threaten repossession of landscape materials a few times, but thankfully haven't had to follow through (yet - I may still do it on a guy that owes $1K, a guy I've had to chase down for every payment so far).

    It's interesting, though. I wonder if things would be different if you set up a contract where the customer would pay each month in advance? Then this would be less likely to happen. And if they didn't pay for the next month, they would be out of the rotation. Then any charges incurred over and above the monthly fee would get charged to the following month's bill.
     
  19. DanG

    DanG Senior Member
    Messages: 240

    I've had to few times where people can be a pain the A$$
    I used to plow all the Cumberland Farms stores here and when plowing across the front of one this jerk parked right where I was plowing.(said He'd only be a second)
    After five minutes he wasn't back yet so I plowed a mound of snow up to his back bumper and then went around to the front of his car and parked in front of it.
    I then went in and got a coffee and some donuts and went on break.
    The guy went out to his car and flipped out.
    Came in and started screaming that I had to move my truck ..he had to get to work etc..
    I then informed him I had to wait for him so now he can wait for me.
    And thats what I made him do.
     
  20. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    One thing that I include in my contract at the bottom of the page is a line that says "Bill more than thirty days past due will be charger 1.5% interest weekly" This may not get you paid right away but the bill keeps growing until you finally have to take them into court. I think that this might make them think twice before non-payment. Also this being my first year plowing and all I have already fired one customer. This jerk chewed me out on the first snow/ice storm because my proposal is to plow at 2". The ice and snow was not that deep so I held off so as not to unfairly plow and charge. He griped and I plowed right away which was still before his business opened. The next snow was not deep enough again but since hehad said that he wanted his customers to come to his store in slippers if they like I made sure all of the drifted snow was plowed clean. He griped about this too. He would not sign the contract in the first place saying that if he didn't like the service he wanted to be able to change contractors. Guess what? That let me drop him because he was not a satisfactory customer. If he wants plowing it will be cash up front and by his request only.. No more auto-plowing.