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Author Topic: Guarantee  (Read 208 times)

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Offline ProTilling

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Guarantee
« on: Wed December 06, 2017, 05:39:13 PM »
As I am getting everything set up for my first hydroseeding season next spring I am trying to figure out what to do about a guarantee.  Some hydroseeding companies in my area offer it and other don't mention anything about a guarantee.  The price I am going to charge is toward the low end of what I have seen but its not the lowest.  I plan on offering good quality seed, mulch etc.

My question is do you guys think it is necessary to offer a guarantee? If I was looking for hydorseeding I would feel better about hiring someone who offers a guarantee.  Most of the success of the hydroseeding would depend on watering.  I of course don't want to reseed it or give a refund if they don't water.  Also, what about having well prepared soil?  I also offer tilling services to prepare it before its hydroseeded and I anticipate most people that will get that done.  However I have come across some people that don't want to prepare the ground at all. 

I am thinking of of offering a guarantee that I will re-seed areas that don't come in well at no extra cost as long as it is watered properly and the soil was prepared properly. What are your guys thoughts on this?  Do you have any suggestions?
I'm not really sure how to determine if the water instructions were followed other than just believing what the homeowner tells me. 
Thanks

Offline Turboguy

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #1 on: Wed December 06, 2017, 06:26:28 PM »
I can share what I do if that is any help.  If someone doesn't ask about a guarantee I don't bring it up but I do get a fair number of customers who do.  The guarantee I offer is if there are any bare spots or areas that don't come in as long as it was watered properly I will come back one time at no charge.  I do go over watering very thoroughly with my customers.

I probably get about 2-3 jobs a year where I have to go back.  That is out of the 65-70 jobs I did this year.  Typically it is when we had torrential downpours after I seeded.  I rarely have had a job where I had to go back because the customer didn't water.

Now to be honest what I say and what I do are not always the same thing.  I have always felt when someone pays me to hydroseed their lawn they are not paying me to spray mulch and seed, they are paying me to give them a beautiful lawn so on the rare times that even a second spray didn't get him a beautiful lawn I would go back as many times as I needed to.  I have also had a few times when I followed up on a lawn and saw problems that I went back without being asked.  I prefer to under promise and over deliver. 

Usually call backs are rare enough that it isn't much of a problem and I have always felt that having happy customers is the way to grow your business.  I do get a lot of referral business and I think it is trying hard to take care of my customers that helps that happen.
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Offline dawrule

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #2 on: Thu December 07, 2017, 12:03:09 PM »
I guarantee the seed is as specified on the tag. I even go as far as having the state germ tests available for customers to view. I also guarantee the quality of the application.

I don't guarantee the customer is going to water properly. I don't guarantee their sprinkler system is adjusted properly. I don't guarantee lawns seeded outside prime growing months. I never guarantee repair from weed infestations.

That said I never leave my customers hanging. If something goes haywire I charge them material costs + discounted time to repair areas that did not establish due to conditions out of my control. Most important I give detailed instructions how to prep before seeding and post application.

As a hydroseed contractor you are the master of knowledge, give your customers the information they need for a successful grow and you will save your self hours of headache and lost profit.




Offline HSandG

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #3 on: Thu December 07, 2017, 08:59:28 PM »
When i first started seeding residential lawns , i offered a guarantee to reseed if it didn't grow as expected.  i gave the customer a detailed sheet with all of the watering times , fertilization and lime schedules and explained how important it was to follow the instructions. I found they had nothing to lose if the instructions were not followed. I had about a 30% callback rate. When i asked if they were watering , they always said absolutely . When i would drive by , most of the time i saw dust devils....they were not watering.One time ,i seeded three back yards in a row with the same batch , about 10,000 sq ft total. After about three weeks the middle yard was barren  and the ones on each side were beautiful. The owner of the middle yard insisted it must have been a bad batch. I would usually reseed a yard within a few days , i planned my route so i could be near the area ,so it was not too time consuming. It is frustrating when you know you did your part , but the customer did not.
I came up with a new guarantee. I would charge half of the original cost if a respray was necessary. That cured it. Now the customer did have something to lose if they didn't do their part. Callbacks went to less than 5% .
finn t-330 , b-260 mulcher

Offline ProTilling

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #4 on: Fri December 08, 2017, 10:39:16 AM »
Thanks for the comments.  I don't want to leave customers hanging in the wind but my fear is exactly what HSandG mentioned.  If there is a guarantee I don't have any easy way to prove if they are watering consistently or not.

What about spraying on prepared soil?  Do customers ask you to spray on hard compacted soil and expect good results?  Do you seed those area or insist they have it tilled first?

Thanks again for your comments. 

Offline Bowie Man

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #5 on: Fri December 08, 2017, 12:26:06 PM »
Good questions and answers for a new guy.  Two things I stress when I am training new contractors.
1) Hydroseeding is an application method.  It provides for the proper distribution and growing environment for new seedings.   If the customer does not follow up with proper care than the specter of a less than perfect job can occur.   Prepare and hand the customer an after care sheet that outlines proper watering and follow up care. 
2) If you don't like the way the ground is prepped on the job offer the customer the option of you providing the proper soil conditions or walk away.  Even if the customer swears up and down that they won't hold you responsible if the job doesn't germinate properly, your name is still attached to the site and nothing worse than bad advertising,

Good luck this season
Ed Dugan
Northeast Bowie Sales LLC
Phone: (908) 231-0987
Fax:  (908) 333-4117
Mobile: (908) 334-6398
www.nebowiesales.com
 
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Offline Turboguy

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Re: Guarantee
« Reply #6 on: Sat December 09, 2017, 11:07:00 AM »
I think it is important to make sure the customers don't overwater as well.  I have had some of my worst failures when the customer over watered.  The one that stands out in my mind the most was a long time ago when I did a job for a customer and he called me that a lot of areas didn't come in.  I went to check out his lawn and there were 4 perfect circles of bare dirt with a sprinkler sitting in the middle of each and everywhere except those circles had a beautiful stand of grass.   Basically he turned on his sprinklers every day and left them run all day drowning out and washing away any seed.

I had another this year that was close by.  It was a nice house with a hillside in the back and a field to the right side that he didn't care about but had us seed.  I went back to check on it.  The field to the right he didn't care about and didn't water came in beautifully.  The hillsides in the back that got no water came in beautifully.  The main lawn was terrible.  I went back and redid it without even him asking but did tell him when I was there to just water lightly but often and not too heavy. 
Turbo Turf HS-300-XPW +The new for next year HS-400-ZH.

 

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