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Had a custy the other day pay me three cleans money then say to me can you leave them for a couple of months till the weather gets better, I said that's not really the way it works as I have bills to pay in the winter too, I said to them I would leave it a couple of months I have no intention of doing it again and when they ask for another clean will tell them I only do regular customers. I pick up work all the time on this round.

I've only been in business a year but remember the advice I got on here and from a website window cleaning coach don't take any **** from anyone, drop messers and bad payers, train the customers don't let them train you. I get on really well with my customers and have great banter with most, but this site has helped me with certain situations I might have struggled to cope with had I not had access to it in the early part of my career. So thanks too all the great posters on here and a guy called shinetime who put up the window cleaning coach site.

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if you have no intention of returning whats the point in agreeing just to let them down at the end as that's destined to get you a bad reputation......and in this game reputation is what matters as thers a lot of cowboys out there cleaning windows, i do agree with you about bills need to be paid same as everyone elses do, when i have people ask me do you work all year my reply is ofcourse my bills need paying in winter aswel summer but to lead them on just to let them down seems ludicrous to me. theirs a lot of windys out there and on here who take pride in the fact that they dont take no **** off anyone but in my opinoin to make a successful business its not about how much **** you dont take its about how much **** you can take and keep going....... by all means if somesones a bad payer dont work for them but for some to say upfront can you leave me for few months during winter doesnt make them a bad payer or a messer.

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if you have no intention of returning whats the point in agreeing just to let them down at the end as that's destined to get you a bad reputation......and in this game reputation is what matters as thers a lot of cowboys out there cleaning windows, i do agree with you about bills need to be paid same as everyone elses do, when i have people ask me do you work all year my reply is ofcourse my bills need paying in winter aswel summer but to lead them on just to let them down seems ludicrous to me. theirs a lot of windys out there and on here who take pride in the fact that they dont take no **** off anyone but in my opinoin to make a successful business its not about how much **** you dont take its about how much **** you can take and keep going....... by all means if somesones a bad payer dont work for them but for some to say upfront can you leave me for few months during winter doesnt make them a bad payer or a messer.

I take your point , you'll notice at the start of my op I said they paid me 3 months money that's a bad payer in my book, I have only cleaned this custy since Sept and I also think saying for me to leave it a couple of months is messing me about hence why I'll mess them about, as I have already said I have a good rapport with nearly all my customers and I think this Messer will not ruin my reputation as I do a decent job and am always pleasant to the customers, I will also be pleasant when I tell this Messer I can't do their Windows.

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fair enough each to their own but this drop it attitude will only get you so far ...... its all good have a good rapport with many customers cuz thats the aim of the game at the end of the day but after 9 years cleaning windows what iv learned is it take many jobs to earn a good reputation and only one to lose it so id be careful

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fair enough each to their own but this drop it attitude will only get you so far ...... its all good have a good rapport with many customers cuz thats the aim of the game at the end of the day but after 9 years cleaning windows what iv learned is it take many jobs to earn a good reputation and only one to lose it so id be careful

Thanks for the advice thats why this site is so good, and I do understand where you are coming from but I know my customers and the area and this will not damage me one bit.

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If a customer asks me to leave it over winter I just say yeah ok no problem. Your probably get behind anyway so you may be looking at maybe 1 clean at the most 2. I still get to clean them 6 or 7 times a year so I can't see a problem. I don't believe in saying you've got to have them done coz I got bills to pay. They have the choice. That customer could lead to others. If I'm snowed under they just wait & I get there when I can but I still keep them. Bad payers well that's a different matter.

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I feel if you start to miss cleaning even one house during the winter because the customer doesn't want the cleaned because of the weather you are leaving yourself wide open to others wanting the same anyway I clean in the west coast of Scotland bad weather is never far away.

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Personally, I'd just give the customer a card and tell them to give me a ring but remind them there might be a first clean fee after months without cleaning. The chances are you wouldn't hear from them again anyway as it's pretty obvious they don't take clean windows too seriously. I agree with Midland and Posh, I wouldn't deliberately try to mess them about because I felt they have me....they are only customers, we're the pro's.

 

Mart.

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I agree with mart and the others, give a card and tell them to give you a call. I had it a few times and they have rang after months and months. Job can be added on to the end of a day in the summer when you want to be out longer. And you never know what other work will come off it. If it is a messer with money then it has to be money upfront and double rate.

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We are always behind in the winter due to weather and shorter day light hours. As we have a bursting round, I welcome the odd cancellation until spring request. Over the years we haven't found it an epedimic of one cancelling creating a wave of cancellations.

 

Some haven't wanted our services at the beginning of spring, most have. We have even found that we cleaned a winter cancellation the following winter without being cancelled. Flexibility is important as the customer is the one who pays your bills. Telling them you also have bills to pay sounds a bit desperate and lowers your business image to their level.

 

However, if they were a messer in other ways, late/bad payer etc then this is probably the time to remove them from your books and look for a replacement customer. If they want you back in spring then you can say that you replaced their slot with another from your waiting list of customers and will put them on the list until you have a customer cancel and leave it at that.

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"train the customers don't let them train you"

 

While this^ has to be taken with a pinch of salt, its a good thing to remember when dealing with customers, not only to look after your own interests, but also thiers. Afterall, as others have said, we are the professionals.

 

But be very careful messing with customers like the way you describe, it invariably bites you on the arse when you let your emotions get involved like that. Like others have said, stay professional, give them a card, and tell them they are likely to pay first clean rates when the time comes round again due to the extra work needed. If people are bad payers, make them pay upfront. Also, look at the positives, I find first cleans quite profittable, since you are not wasting time and petrol travelling.

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Thanks for all the advice, it has gave me food for thought, I am relatively new (1yr ) but have been dealing with the public most of my working life (service engineer double glazing) the round this customer is in I bought 34 houses it now has 73 customers these were gotten through recommendation and people watching me work I have taken alot of work from the other windys in this area through me doing a better job I have lost none to them mind you I am the only trad in this area, I have never canvassed a door yet as its not the done thing in this area (asking for trouble) if every customer asked you to stop for a couple of months you'd be out of business quickly, I know this is unlikely.

I liked the reply give them a card and do it if you can fit it in but if too busy tell the customer you'll start cleaning again when a slot becomes available. Remember I have only cleaned this house 4 times and got 3 payments on my last visit when I was asked to leave it.

 

Sent from my LT30p using Tapatalk

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Guest ex-jedi

I clean my windows irregularly, so I'm my own irregular customer. So I think of how I'd want a window cleaner to deal with with me, and I'd want someone to be upfront. So if someone wants their windows done every six months, or whenever, I charge them more and explain to them that I prioritise my regular customers. I do that as graciously as I can, and if they don't like it they I tell them politely that I can recommend another window cleaner. I understand the temptation to not go back, but it's not great for your reputation.

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Tough one. I get this all the time on my round, customers that come on the round and then a few months down the line say can we leave it for a 3-4 months or customers that you turn up to clean and they decide to randomly skip a month (normally the ones with the most money)..

 

For years I'd just gone along with it, but late last year I'd just had enough of it so phoned a few of them up and mentioned that when I started I did say to them that I wanted to stick to a 2 monthly clean (either they are on the round or off it!). I was polite and everything else but result was that I lost all the customers that I phoned up. Some were big houses, which was a shame but I generally feel better for it as the anxiety of are they gonna say yes/no when I turn up was doing my head in a bit.

 

That's the trouble with no contract I guess, but would be too expensive (I would imagine) and offputting to potential customers.

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I think most businesses that are round based have the same problem. Milkman and some gardeners get told to leave it. Mate had one customer rack up a 250 pound milk bill before taking her to court, crazy. Another mate who does garden maintenance gets the odd one say leave it till spring. Probably do my own every four months and found it hard to sell monthly cleans, had about 300 on the books at one time and probably 100 were irregular cleans. If your building up a round these types of customer can be frustrating but having these kept me ticking over and other work would come off. Bad payers are another thing, I had a one clean rule and leave payment details. Not hard for anyone nowadays to do a bill payment online.

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I often think what would these messers say if the turned up for work and the boss says don't need you today just have an unpaid day in the house, they would go tonto I bet.

I can see where some are coming from about reputation and I possibly should have been up front with her and tell her I won't be back, I have a good reputation for doing a first class job, I would not want to have a soft touch reputation.

 

Sent from my LT30p using Tapatalk

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