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Annoying Client

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by sectlandscaping, Nov 25, 2011.

  1. sectlandscaping

    sectlandscaping Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    I have a commercial client who negotiated every bid I ever done with them. Then wouldnt pay tax. I talked to them and they started paying tax.

    Then I get the invoice back that was sent on the 1st and due on the 10th on the 25th. They decided not to pay the first installment for snow removal. Saying they want to see how it goes after first snow. Its possible it will not snow till christmas. By that time they will owe two installments and have a third due in week or two.

    Not sure what to do with these people. I have a landscaping contract with them next spring too. So I dont want to be to pushy. To put this in perspective I was going to cover them out of contract for a storm that was suppose to happen on oct 26th. To find out I wouldnt be getting paid till the end of December. The contract calls for 5 payments due by the 10th nov-mar.

    I could drop them just to be a dick or freeze services till payment is received. On the same note a property group just paid a extra $2000 to have me service condos since it was to late in the year to find a contractor.
  2. Plowtoy

    Plowtoy Senior Member
    Messages: 929

    I would try to renegotiate the contract to a per push, rather than seasonal. They may feel better about that and it may work to your benefit if you have an above average season.
  3. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,780

    I would send them another invoice for the first installment. With a late fee. You have these payment plans for a reason. If you show them you have a system for people who play your system it usually brings them in line. I'm not a big phone the client and hold their hand through it kind of person. How would he feel if on the first snow you didn't show up and he called and you answered " Ya, we'll see how it goes." You'd be done. JMO
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Time for a phone call,don't get in to deep with someone new.
  5. forbidden

    forbidden Senior Member
    Messages: 392

    Yup, this could very well be a game that they played with the last people and the people before that..... I would change them to per push, raise the price for it at the same time. If they put the whine and cheese show on, tell them that they had agreed to a previous rate and then changed the rules. If they still are whining more than a little kid who lost his toy, cut them loose and let them become your competitors problem. Even gift wrap it by referring them to the worse hack you can come up with. Short term gain, long term pain.
  6. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    First time you try and bill them after it snows they're going to try and bone you.
  7. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    I had a set of condo's a few years back that were seasonal for everything, they wanted us to refund a portion of their monthly check because it didn't snow in Nov. LOL yeah not happening. I asked them, if it snows more than I anticipate are you going to feel bad and pay me more.....yeah I didn't think so.
  8. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    I'd throw in an extra 10% because your such a good guy!
  9. sectlandscaping

    sectlandscaping Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    Thats kinda what I'm worried about and I was going to use the first two payments towards a 3rd truck. I dont have this problem with anyone else. I even do landscaping for them so its not like I'm some complete stranger.

    As far as legal recourse if needed. Since its a 5 month contract with 5 payments if they drop me 2 months in. They still owe the first 2 payments. Since it might snow 1-2 times in this period theyll be paying 2 grand for 2 pushes on a 1/2 acre lot. I almost rather get that then having to go back for a dozen more storms.

    I was thinking of servicing them last even though there the closest to me. If I get a phone call ill say you pay last you get plowed last. Its to late in the game to get a professional to put you on there route and if they did it will cost. I;m not to sure there aware of this since there new to managing the property. The property management group that just gave me a $4000 lot at $6200 knows this. I dont believe they heard the term emergency service.
  10. Weenuk

    Weenuk Senior Member
    Messages: 207

    In a similar situation, we plowed that commercial last near the end of time line. When the property manager called, informed the property manager that we take care of clients first who keep up to date on payment. Dont let client push you if they want you to push....
  11. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    Well finally someone gets me!
  12. sectlandscaping

    sectlandscaping Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    Thing is I just talked to the guy a few days ago when I was finishing the clean up. He didnt mention this at all. I'm going to send him a invoice at the beginning of the month with both payments and a letter. That way I have a copy in case this gets to small claims.

    This makes me want to switch to a deposit on signing of contract with monthly payments after. Even though I never had this problem with a commercial client before.
  13. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    To me things like this are simple......make a phone cal or in person (I prefer in person), take the signed contract, explain when and why payments are due and if they keep giving you the run around give them 3 days to pay in full or find someone else. Why bother with these types of customer's.
  14. Brian Young

    Brian Young PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,394

    I've had a few and not one of them were worth keeping! People like that need a reality check from time to time, just keep them and just not plow them until you feel like plowing them.....that day, that week or even a couple weeks after the storm.
  15. Weenuk

    Weenuk Senior Member
    Messages: 207

    Or just stop clearing until payment is made in full with the next payment up front for this trouble.
  16. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    Now you know why the last guy is finished with them. I would not waste my time. Tell them to look for the next guy. They voided your contract. Don't bend over.
  17. goel

    goel PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,079

    You need to include an IDIOT tax for them. At least 10 percent.

    To me they are not worth the hassle and the chance of not getting paid.
  18. Weenuk

    Weenuk Senior Member
    Messages: 207

    I forgot the "IDIOT" tax. Thank you for the remainder....
  19. juspayme

    juspayme Senior Member
    Messages: 116

    condo people think they can push you around, dont let them if you have a signed contract. demand payment! the fact of it snowing or not snowing does not constitute when payment is made. if your not man enough to to stand up to people you should go work for someone.
  20. csi.northcoast

    csi.northcoast Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    I have explained to people in the past that a seasonal contract is like insurance... you pay a set rate no matter what or when it snows. if you did not pay your insurance you would surely be cancelled.. if the want to pay per push that is fine but the can't have it both ways. i would explain it to the that way and if they can't understand ... them tell them sorry and find someone else... you do not need the headache