How To Get Rid Of A Customer That’s A Pest

end a contractOn the homeowners’ association Facebook page, one of my neighbors posted a letter from her pest control company that had politely “fired” her as a customer. Although she didn’t understand why it happened, the contents of the letter made it clear that she was, at a minimum, an unprofitable customer.

So, how do you get rid of a bad customer? Or a supplier that’s not meeting your standards?

First, establish a list of red flags for your business.

Then prescreen using the red flag list before entering into a business relationship.

Yet some pests will sneak through from time to time. Or you’ll make an exception to your red flag list and discover it’s a costly mistake.

That’s where your written contract comes into play.

Ideally your business agreements will let you pass on additional costs of dealing with a pest. This is particularly important for services contracts where labor costs can really add up dealing with someone who is unreasonable.

In addition, you’ll want your contracts to provide you with several ways to get out (e.g., by providing XX days’ prior notice) if those red flags start waving.

Now it’s important to be polite when terminating a relationship like this. If for no other reason than it reduces the threat (legit or not) of a lawsuit by the pest you’re disposing of.

And just as one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, your problem customer may be ideal for one of your competitors. In fact, as part of termination, you may want to refer the departing customer to your competition.

Author Mike Young, Esq.

Mike Young has been practicing business and technology law since 1994 and is an angel investor in startups. He's been an entrepreneur since 1988. To get legal help from Attorney Young, click here now or call 214-546-4247 to schedule a phone consultation.

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