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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a customer that is new to me this year, and they are complaning about hoqw much money they have spent all ready this year. The contract states that If there is 1 Inch on the ground i push and salt if there are conditions that are slippery ice/snow or wet parking lot and it is going to freeze I salt. Yesterday is started snow, so i spreader some salt and the owner asked me what I was doing, and i again advised him what I was doing snow is falling salt and then plow with the storm for liability reasons. He told me that he doesnt want me salting or plowing till the storm is over, i told him that it is a liablity issue and its on me, and the contract states that it up to my dicrestion on how to handle the storm. He signed the contract and now is complaing, Im not god i cant control the weather. So last night I got to his lot and there was 9 1/2" on the ground. In my contract it says 4" plus but since I had to plow one time and wasnt allowed to plow with the storm, should i charge him double for this storm, since it took me 2 1/2 hours to clean his lot since there was so much traffic in the lot and there were still cars there when i got there. im not trying to run this guy over the coals, but my time is worth every penny. sorry so long but i had to vent and ask a few questions
 

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He is breaking the contract . If you feel uncomfortable , call him on it and drop him .
 

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I would definitly charge double and either look at changing your arrangement with this customer:argue or look at dropping them.
 

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If I had to plow that much it would have to be more than double the price or I would not just not plow it and send him a cancelation of his contract. That type of ****omer you don'r need or you will be :argue all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
i am going to charge him double. he also told me he has a budget and its getting close to his allowance for the year. the funny thing is this is a insurance company, that i have all my insurance with they should know all about liablity, he also said there are multiple partents involved, so i told him the first time one of those gray hairs slip and fall, there on me, and it would come back on them because its there insurance company. some people are so stupid
 

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ARE YOU BEING FAIR AND HONORABLY TO HIM?

Or are you taking him over the coals.If your taking him over the coals shame on you.

But if your being fair and honorable.Dont allow a customer to dictate to you a proffetional how to do your job properly.in every industry there are people who know better then you on how you should do your job.

If he want's a half baked job suggest he find some who will do a half baked job.Explain to him you are only protecting his intrest.If he want to use less salt then you will honor that as long as he indemnifies you and takes full responceibilty for slips and falls and have him write a letter that he will take all responcibilty for it and hold you and your employees harmless and have him adress it to you and your liabilty insurance company.
NO ONE IN THERE WRIGHT MIND WOULD DO THAT and it may just drive home the importance of the salting.As for the plowing 9 1/2 is too much to push and before I destroyed my equiptment I would stick to my guns or pass on the contract.

Prices a person want's to pay should not drive the type of service you provide.I have mentioned it before I own a service related company and we only provide top notch service and product and if a person does not want to pay for that type of service we reccomend he shop elsewere.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ARE YOU BEING FAIR AND HONORABLY TO HIM?

YES i take care of my customers with the most utmost standards, i only go out when the condtions call for it, and to further show that i am out at the right times, i look around the area and see if other guys are plowing or salting, and when the big guns are out i know im ok (there are a few contractors in metro detroit that are huge 40 + trucks) I have sen some guys plowing 1/2" and im only salting and this guys partners are complaning, hell i could have plowed and salted but i follow my contracts to a t.
 

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Bite the bullet and cut him loose - now. If you keep it in an attempt to salvage something, you'll only prolong the pain. If they see they can get you to back down, there'll be no end to it. If you don't back down, the complaints will only continue. If there is an accident, they'll suddenly want to pull out the contract - which they wouldn't follow and you conceded to their demands. Any way it goes - you lose.

Be sure you write a letter stating their new expectations - that this is not in accordance with your contract with them - that you cannot meet thier new expectations and for that reason understand that they have broken the old contract and you are no longer able to meet thier needs. Better yet, get a lawyer to send it for you.
 

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I sya you are better off dropping him if you can afford to. Snow removal is a stressful job as it is and having a PITA customer to deal with makes it worse. He hired you to do the job, and you as the professional should make the judgment call as to when things get done and how they are to be handled.

I had a customer that signed a contract stating snow would be plowed at approx 2" and sanding and salting was up to my discretion. Well after a couple of 2" snowfalls I notice that one of the members of the strata comittee had done the lot by hand. Then I got a call from the guy who was doing it saying, " we'll call you when we need you, maybe at 6" or so". I told him we had a contract, and I was hired to do a job, we agreed 2" they were breaking the contract and I told them I would no longer do the job. He suddenly got worried and said what about when we get lots of snow how will we do that? I said I was hired to take care of the snow removal ALL WINTER not when they couldn't do it themselves. I am not at their beckoning call and they could find someone else to do it. The same guy also told me earlier not to worry about spraying the lawns or fertilizing them as he had a "little sprayer" and he would do the lawns in the complex himself. Right, and when there are brown spots all over the lawn because he accidently used roundup, who will they try blame. When someone trys to change something once youve made a deal, I say tell them to stick it.
 

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i would change insurance companies to start
 

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ih82plow said:
have him write a letter that he will take all responcibilty for it and hold you and your employees harmless and have him adress it to you and your liabilty insurance company.
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I think you missed that part - this is his insurance company.
 

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I just rerad your post about him being your insurance company.Do you have clean loss runs meaning not alot of slip and fall suites

If yes remind him of that fact and explain the reason your loss are so low for the industry is because you do the job proper.

As for his partners I always use that excuse when I am necoceating.

I always say you know if your price came in around ???? I would be able to give you the job with out having to talk to our purchasing comitty or holly cow my partners are going to send this out to bid with the numbers you are talking.

If I was you I would ask then for a sit down with all of the partners to stress to them the importance of safe building grounds and do his partners understand the liability the guy who wants to lessen your services is putting on all of the partners.

I love to negoceate ( cant spell it) ask the fellow as an insurance agent who know what a sue happy society we live in IS HE READY TO GIVE UP EVRY THING HE WORKED FOR TO SAVE A FEW DOLLARS,then explain that what ever this seasons total billing is you will devide it up in 12 equal payments and on 4/15/04 he can start paying towards next season contract to make it easeyer for him to budjet his exspences.If he under alittle he can pay it at the end of next season or if he over a little you refund his money at the end of next season.More or less eliminate all of his excuses


GOOD LUCK
 

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If he under alittle he can pay it at the end of next season or if he over a little you refund his money at the end of next season.

Let me emphisize this

YOU WILL GIVE HIM A CASH REFUND.
 

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i would charge them double and then i would have a sitdown with the ins. co and explain to them that its to their benifit for you to handle the snow managment they way you do if they still refuse and want to change terms then i would drop them also i would be concerned if hes about run out of money in his snow management fund... first of he could just be giving you a load of BS to try to make ya back down on your cost or he could be serious which could pose a problem down the road when you get a major storm and he says sorry i can pay you ive run outta money to pay for snow services... they ya gotta go through the hassle of going to court or atleast getting a good lawyer to put pressure on them for the money owed... so i would be warey of this customer and it might be in you best intrest in the long run to just drop them... but if your going to drop them make sure their paid up when ya do it this way they cant screw with your money and cause you a hassel...

one more thing if i were you i think i would rewrite my contract so it was more specific than just 4 Inch + even if you dont normaly see much more that that it can happen and you #1 lose out on the potential to charge more money #2 If you have someone that wants to push the issue they can hold you to your contract saying you cant charge more because it said that was the cost for 4 + only and any snow over 4 inches is covered by the cost of 4 +. would suck for that to happen on a storm where ya got like 20 inches and had to do it for the price you put down for 4 +. if ya see what im getting at...
 

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you may also want to suggest that you call the shots as far as who he writes insurance to....see if he like that.
 

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Got Snow? said:
you may also want to suggest that you call the shots as far as who he writes insurance to....see if he like that.
lol actually he should tell him that hes running low on money for his insurance budget and he will only pay him in months when he has an accident... after all theres no point in paying in a month when he doesnt need to file a claim lol
 

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I plow for the local State Farm Ins. Claims office and they don't play. It is all my call. They told me to keep the property as safe as possible. They have never argued a bill, very prompt in paying and have renewed for 3 yrs now. If you can get the guy to sign some waiver waiving your resposiblity if you are not allowed to complete the work as conditions warrant or ammend your contract with the new things the customer wants or doesn't want then I'd do it ASAP! And tell him.... no actually send him a letter stating that the existing contract is null and void because of or for whatever reasons or plain and simple there was a breach(sp?) in the contract and is now void and a new contract with new conditions must be signed before anymore work can commence. If he doesn't then I'd say be rid of the account. I hate to loss an account and the money but in the long run your lossing because if he wants you only the when the conditions are really bad, you've got more time and materials to complete the job for the same pay as not as bad conditions. ( hope that sounds right?) Not to mention the wear and tear on equipment. Not saying you do this, but when I first started out, I did whatever the customer wanted even if it was more work, and if I charged them more and they tried to wheel and deal out of it I would let it go. Now my price is my price and my conditions are my condition. PERIOD. As soon as people can see that you can be "bought" for something else then its all over. I'm sure that this guy has money and alot of the people that I have dealt with that have money are harda**'s with their business and don't let stuff slide so why should you? Stand up and take action dude, you're worth the money. OK, I'm done. Think I've been throught this before?
 

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ANAL customers

i had a few of them last year and hated serving them.

this year i got stuck with one and handed it over to a really good friend (jeff) on this site lol.just ask him what he said to this lady the other day.he was telling me what he said on the 2 way and i was waiting for her message on my home phone lol.
 

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I have a simular situation . I have shared lot with a funeral home on one side the other side a lawyer. The lawyer is complaining about the salting bill and saying that I charge too much. Also, has not paid me a dime yet. The Funeral owner paid me two days after bill was sent and said I did a great job. Both places have identical bills.

I might add that when hired by the Funeral Owner (he owns both properties and the lawyer is renting to him) that we have guaranteed payment if the scenario is such that lawyer tries to stiff me. I guess he has had problems with him being a jerk with the previous plow guy (who is an acquintance and going through medical problems so referred me to funeral guy).
 

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Mike, shame on you !!!

You never turn over a anal customer or a bad customer to a friend..... You send those to your competitors ! Or you recommend them to the worst sleazeball contractor you know, This way you may get them back after they realize what they had in comparison to what they ended up with!

:D Thats what I do !
 
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