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They Pulled all my stakes !!!!

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Clapper&Company, Nov 29, 2005.

  1. Clapper&Company

    Clapper&Company PlowSite Veteran
    from NE OHIO
    Messages: 4,413

    Never in all my years have I ever had this problem. Its a given that before it snows we go out and stake all the lots, so we dont care any thing up. I dont need to go in to any more detail, just about everyone dose it.

    So one of our new accounts for this year, so we went out and staked out this new account. And its been about a week now, they have pulled all of my stakes, because they dont like the way it looks :rolleyes:..

    So what should I do? So I make them sign a wavier saying we're not responble for any thing we tear up, due to it not being staked? or just do it with? I want my stakes back,they costed me $0.30 each, if they tossed them away, should I bill them for the stakes?

    Any reply would help...
  2. paponte

    paponte Senior Member
    Messages: 717

    Absolutely! Wow, talk about a waste of time huh? We state clearly in our contract that if we cannot stake, we cannot be responsible for any damages that may occur. If they threw them out I would ask to be reimbursed for them. Just lets not lose the account ok.
  3. mkwl

    mkwl 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,362

    I'd tell 'em you want your stakes back, bill 'em if they tossed them. Tell them you'll add $X.XX to the cost for you having to be more careful and plow slower, and make them sig a contract telling them that you're not responsible for any damage.
  4. ZamboniHDB

    ZamboniHDB Senior Member
    Messages: 338

    clapper&Company -

    Did you personally speak to a representative of the new account? If not, it's quite possible that last years snow plowing contractor could have pulled a fast one on you.

    Just my .02¢
  5. little pat

    little pat Member
    Messages: 83

    I would ask for the stakes back, if they tossed them then make em pay to replace them. I would also have them sign a waiver so you are not responsible for damages to the lawn or whatever was being staked off.
  6. itsgottobegreen

    itsgottobegreen PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,351

    I charge $2 per each missing or damaged stake at the end of the season.
  7. fms

    fms Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 209

    I agree. Have them sign a waiver.
    If it's a large fixed price contract, I'd forget about it.
    If it's an hourly, or per push, I wouldn't say anything, but make my costs back by the end of the year. It may sound cheesy, but the $20 +/- worth of stakes is a nominal cost that they're probably not too concerned about. You requesting to be refunded for your loss may not go over well. Have the conversation about the stakes and play it by ear.

    TRUE TURF LAWN Senior Member
    Messages: 290

    that will happen.
  9. douglasl330

    douglasl330 Senior Member
    Messages: 356

    I'm with lil Pat and FMS---just don't make too many waves if you want them as a client!

    Good luck!
  10. Killswitch

    Killswitch Senior Member
    Messages: 246

    Id probably have words with the guy after I blew him off the next time it snows.

    Id never waste my time with an ******* customer like that who plainly does not respect you.

    That being said. Ive seen some guys use way too many stakes and it does look ****** from the homeowners perspective. Try using as few stakes as possible and just know your sites. This may eliviate at least a few potential complaints or bummed clients.

    Edit to add: Geez. Whats with all the asterisks. I didnt know this was a day care center.
  11. go plow

    go plow Senior Member
    Messages: 322

    what i do is, i put stakes at the end of a drive, and about three to four in front of any curve of obstical.. it works well for me... what you client should have done was talk to you about it, they should have called you and told you to remove some of them or all of them, as for what i would do in you case, i would call them and talk to them about having them sign a contract or agreement for damages!!!!!!!! then make the cost of your stakes up with your plowing!!!!!!!! you can get it back on a bige storm by plowing an extra push!!!! dont sweat it!!!!!! you will have people like that come and go, not worth it at all... hope this helps, good luck to you and all the others on this site ...... be safe!!!
  12. SnowUnlimited

    SnowUnlimited Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    What I do with my accounts that need to be staked out is.I include a clause in the contract stating that I will stake the area as I see fit as to avoid any damages to the property and or my equipment.If they don't agree then I will not take and liablity for damages to the property.I have yet to have any problems with anyone about this matter.
  13. justme-

    justme- 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,138

    Well, I would definatly request the stakes be returned or they would be billed for replacements. when iI sign a new customer I always make it clear I will be staking the area- that I supply the stakes, install them where I want them and will remove them in the spring. Never had a problem- and I never feel the need to justify where I place the stakes or how many stakes I use- it's not for looks, it's for function. If you have 6 sprinkler heads along the drive odds are you are getting 6 markers on that side.

    Some of my regulars pull them early in the spring on me, but it's usually not a big deal- they know when I am planning on pulling them within a week anyway and usually have them waiting for me. Only had 1 customer pull a stake during season because he couldn't back out of his garage and keep his car on the driveway so he kept hitting it. I just made sure not to push the bank back too far in that spot for the rest of the season (didn't want to tear up the lawn, don't you know)- he learned how for the next year and problem solved.

    Talk to the customer- tell them why you need the stakes (maybe they don;t like the stakes you use- do you use wood by chance?) If they refuse to have stakes have them sign a damage release for incidentals to the drive edges and such. (unless they have inground sprinklers, walls, stones, etc that you don;t want to hit anyway in which case I might consider refusing service without markers) Odds are it's a simple misunderstanding and easy to fix- it's rarely they obstanite situation we all imagine at first.
  14. PremierLand

    PremierLand PlowSite.com Addict
    from detroit
    Messages: 1,572

    about 5 resi's pulled out my stakes. I dont really care they were realllll cheap
  15. All_Clear

    All_Clear Senior Member
    Messages: 206

    Have them sign a damage wavier.... If it's that big of a deal and they tossed out your stakes, bill them for the stakes and possibly for the time "wasted" staking it, I would'nt however put it in those words. :rolleyes:
  16. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    Different line of logic

    What kind of stakes did you put in? If a client has an image to keep up, hammering the property with nasty wooden stakes spray painted orange on the top would want me to take them out too. Talk to the property manager and explain the importance of staking, and how hitting a curb at 15 mph buried under 6" of snow is no picnic. See if you can switch to a pole like the ones at Fiberglassinnovations.com, I used these at a picky clients location and they didn't mind.

    I agree with some of the other comments that you don't want to make too much fuse over this. You'll more than make up the money/time spent over the coarse of the winter. But staking is very important so try to come to a resolution, if the answer is NO STAKES, take pictures of trouble spots so you have a guide of sorts and have them sign a waiver for damages.
  17. Dojo

    Dojo Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 7

    I was just wondering where got your markers. Ours are still on back order and I am running out of patience, plus .30 is a better price than I was getting. If anyone knows of any online site that I could get them overnighted, it would be greatly appreciated.
  18. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    The cheep fiberglass markers are from Angelo's: http://www.angelos-supplies.com/plowparts/catresults.pg?cat='Driveway%20Stakes'

    The ones you get from Fiberglassinnovations.com are thicker thus harder to break and have the reflective tape at the top and have the metal caps to help pound in to the ground.
  19. mmwb

    mmwb Senior Member
    from wyoming
    Messages: 114

    I just got a catologue from Angelos the other day. While a bit more than your .30 ones, they have 1/4", orange, fiberglass stakes (48" long) for .50 ea, or 45.00 per hundred.
  20. THE BOSS 1975

    THE BOSS 1975 Senior Member
    Messages: 120

    wow i have been plowing for 10 years and never had a customer pull the stakes but now a days who knows what some people are thinking upstairs...
    i would bill them for the stakes if they do not return them (including labor to put them in),also i would make them sign a damage waiver for the the property and equiptment,plows are not cheap nor are our trucks!!!!just my thought on it ...:gunsfiring: