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Gates locked but customer reminded


Williams_Window_Cleaning

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Williams_Window_Cleaning

If you remind your customer the day before but the gates are locked and noones home what do you guys do?

Do you charge them half price or full price as you have reminded them?

 

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We don't climb over gates.  Reasons : customers are notified in advance that we will be coming so it's up to them to clear access, risk of injury to us which could put a career in jeopardy for th

Some people get wiser as they get older. Not all, but some. 😁

When I was younger I saw these obstacles as challenges to overcome. Now I think, I’m only cleaning windows, not saving a life. 

Posted (edited)

If it's a genuine mistake I would just charge a proportion of the full price and put a note on the ticket/invoice saying "fronts only".

Edited by Cookie
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I'd normally charge a perecentage depending on the number of windows that are cleanable. But at the same time I'm now finding I have two customers who regularly dont unlock the gates so that I can do 'just the front' for a few months then want the rear done expecting the normal price, when in fact it should be more as they havent been done in 3-4months. So yeah, its a judgement call that only you can make to be honest.

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2 hours ago, Williams_Window_Cleaning said:

If you remind your customer the day before but the gates are locked and noones home what do you guys do?

Do you charge them half price or full price as you have reminded them?

 

Clean the next house and don't stand around wasting time is my course of action 

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2 hours ago, Robt100 said:

I'd normally charge a perecentage depending on the number of windows that are cleanable. But at the same time I'm now finding I have two customers who regularly dont unlock the gates so that I can do 'just the front' for a few months then want the rear done expecting the normal price, when in fact it should be more as they havent been done in 3-4months. So yeah, its a judgement call that only you can make to be honest.

If they are a serial offender with not opening the gate once they have done it twice they will get charged full price moving forward this covers for the extra cleaning, even if they have a good run of 6 months with opening the gate then it's locked again full price is charged, 

I have a minimum charge which usually applies to most jobs apart from the larger jobs where I charge what I consider a fair price this is usually for those where it's a once in a blue moon issue. 

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We don’t  txt customers or take on jobs without access full stop , if they won’t give us a key or a code we arnt interested in the job . For the very reasons you are now having problems with  

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4 hours ago, Williams_Window_Cleaning said:

If you remind your customer the day before but the gates are locked and noones home what do you guys do?

Do you charge them half price or full price as you have reminded them?

 

If it's a £12 job and it's a genuine mistake we'd revert to £8 which is our minimum charge. If it's a higher price then as long as it didn't fall below £8 we'd charge half price. If it's an ongoing problem then you would need to decide to drop them or renegotiate the "full" house price.

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4 hours ago, Williams_Window_Cleaning said:

If you remind your customer the day before but the gates are locked and noones home what do you guys do?

Do you charge them half price or full price as you have reminded them?

 

charge them a lower price for front only or get the ladders off and go over the gate.....

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Posted (edited)

i have a customer who sometimes forgets(semi detached big victorian house)...its a £40 6 weekly job....the job takes half an hour and i also clean the neighbours at £40 too which also takes half an hour so i just get the ladders off and split the sections,takes 5 mins.id rather do that than knock £20 off her bill.....

Edited by dazmond
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Williams_Window_Cleaning
33 minutes ago, dazmond said:

charge them a lower price for front only or get the ladders off and go over the gate.....

I dont use ladders so I wouldn't be able to do tbat

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We don't climb over gates. 

Reasons : customers are notified in advance that we will be coming so it's up to them to clear access, risk of injury to us which could put a career in jeopardy for the sake of a few quid, risk of doing damage to the customer's property, I'd consider it an invasion of a customer's property, it would not look good to a neighbour or passer-by and I'm sure some customers would not be happy, too much time and effort involved which is not accounted for in the price.

We will charge an appropriate price for what we can get to. Leave them a card with that written on and move on swiftly to the next job.

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Williams_Window_Cleaning

I'll be honest my opinion is that if I've notified the customer the day before and they have said yes thats fine then the gate should be unlocked.

My personal opinion of the matter is why should I have to take a loss when its not my fault the gate is locked?

Now I know that's probably a controversial way of thinking but business is business and if I've upheld my part of the contract which is cleaning the windows and notifying them of when I'm coming then its only fair that they uphold they're end which is paying the agreed price and opening any gates for us.

Is it just me who thinks that way?

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You are asking people's opinions and some have given theirs.@Williams_Window_Cleaning Just because they maybe think differently to you doesn't mean you are wrong or that they are wrong.

What you do is up to you and how you run your business. If you decide that they must pay the full price then that's the way you should deal with it. Some customers will accept their 'fate' and others may think you are being unfair. Obviously if most of your 'guilty' customers feel you are acting unfairly and cancel your services then your experience might make you think to approach the problem differently.

In our part of the world we have a lot of competition and low prices generally. We need to bear this in mind. We also need to consider where the vast majority of our work came from - from friend's recommendations. If we upset one customer it can have a knock on effect with those in his friendship circle. That doesn't mean we let ourselves be messed around by customers, we just have to think and act outside the box.

It never ceases to amaze me how many of our customers know each other in our area. I also never know whose custom I have gained from a 'silent' recommendation.

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Posted (edited)

No, you're not alone In your thinking. It's good that we have our own minds.

For me though. I've had two fairly serious accidents with step ladders over the years. The first time (about 30 years ago) I fell off from about three or four steps up, landed awkwardly on concrete and cracked my wrist. I was barrowing readymix concrete a few minutes later bent double with the barrow handle hooked in the bend of my elbow as we were a small gang in number, it was the height of summer and we had to get the concrete down before it started to set. There was no way I could hold the handle of the barrow with that hand. I've never known pain like it. I was unable to work for several weeks and It took years to heal properly.

The second time was a couple of years ago. I stepped off the second rung and my wedding ring got caught in a grip ridge on the rung I was holding. It went into my finger flesh as far as the bone. I had to get my son to hold the other side of the ring while I cut it off with a junior hacksaw before the finger swelled up. I was four hours in A&E before I got the finger cleaned and stitched. If I'd stepped another two inches with the ring caught I'd probably have stripped the flesh and lost the finger. Hence one of the main reasons I won't climb over gates. Oh and a mate of mine broke and fell through a fence last year. He'd been climbing over it for years without issue.

As always though. We're all old enough and ugly enough to make our own decisions. 🙂👍

Edited by Davy G
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If you are inclined to go down the route of asking customers to pay the full rate if they forget to unlock the access, I would advise that you put it down in writing under your "terms of service" agreement and inform customers in advance that this is what you will be doing. 

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1 minute ago, NewGuy said:

If you are inclined to go down the route of asking customers to pay the full rate if they forget to unlock the access, I would advise that you put it down in writing under your "terms of service" agreement and inform customers in advance that this is what you will be doing. 

My gut feeling is that charging full price for a job that's not fully completed, even if it is the customer's fault would not go down well.

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5 minutes ago, NewGuy said:

If you are inclined to go down the route of asking customers to pay the full rate if they forget to unlock the access, I would advise that you put it down in writing under your "terms of service" agreement and inform customers in advance that this is what you will be doing. 

It’s all well and good stating that , but if they refuse to pay there is very little you can do about it , it’s far easier not to take on that type of job or offer fronts only that’s what we do now and found it financially a very good move especially on compact work . 

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1 hour ago, Williams_Window_Cleaning said:

I'll be honest my opinion is that if I've notified the customer the day before and they have said yes thats fine then the gate should be unlocked.

My personal opinion of the matter is why should I have to take a loss when its not my fault the gate is locked?

Now I know that's probably a controversial way of thinking but business is business and if I've upheld my part of the contract which is cleaning the windows and notifying them of when I'm coming then its only fair that they uphold they're end which is paying the agreed price and opening any gates for us.

Is it just me who thinks that way?

Do what you feel you have to, it's your business. A few quid "lost" to us is neither here or there. The only time it would worry me is if it became a regular occurrence.

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9 minutes ago, Davy G said:

My gut feeling is that charging full price for a job that's not fully completed, even if it is the customer's fault would not go down well.

I agree and that's why I won't do it. I was just making the point that he can't just demand and expect to get full payment without having some form of prior agreement.

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