Consumer Tips

3/17/2016

Step into Spring with the right lawncare business.

BBB offers tips for maintaining your lawn in time for spring

Springtime is here and flowers are in bloom – so now may be the time to start landscaping your lawn. Whether your lawn needs a little touch-up or complete makeover, BBB advises finding the right helping hands so your dream of a green wonderland doesn’t turn into a nightmare.

Better Business Bureau serving NW and West Central Ohio and SE Michigan advises consumers not to rush into hiring lawn help. It’s important to get clear, written expectations for what services the company will provide and agree on a fee before work begins. Your BBB launched a helpful spring home improvement page that can serve as a resource for finding BBB Accredited landscaping or lawn services.

Last year, BBB received more than 3,700 complaints against landscape and lawn maintenance and more than 3,100 complaints against landscape contractors nationwide. Nearly 100 complaints were processed by your BBB.

Many complaints alleged dissatisfaction with the services provided and performance of the business. Other complaints reported problems with contracts and delivery.

To find a lawn care business you can trust, BBB offers the following advice:

  • Know what you want from a lawn service. Lawn care companies provide many services, so it’s important to decide what services and products are appropriate for your needs and budget.
  • Find a trustworthy business. Go to bbb.org to check the company’s BBB Business Review. Here you can find information on the business, such as how long they’ve been in business, contact information and customer reviews.
  • Check references. Ask the business for references and photos of previously completed projects. Call all references and ask what their experience was working with the company and if they were satisfied with the services provided.
  • Don’t sign up for services on the spot. If a sales representative comes to your door, get that person’s name or business card. Call the business directly or perform the transaction through the company’s website, and give the sales representative’s name if you’re concerned about them getting credit for the sale. If you insist on signing up on the spot, carefully read all the documents you are signing, particularly if they are electronic. On tablets or laptops, scroll up and down to see the entire document you are signing.
  • Ask for a lawn inspection and free estimate. Lawn care companies that quote a price without seeing your lawn may not give you an accurate estimate. A company should be willing to visit your home to provide you with an agreed upon fee.
  • Get a written agreement. A contract should clearly state the services you will receive, guarantees and refund policies, as well as how and when payment will be handled. If you are using a recurring service, the contract should also include how often the company will come out to work on your lawn, how to cancel the service and a schedule for when payments are due.
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