Don’t Sign off on your Lawn Maintenance and then Check Out of the Process

By Lynn Lewis -
Communications Manager
We live in a world where there are tons of subject matter experts on everything from weight loss to saving money. Most of us tend to leave matters to the experts, and usually, things work out well. However, when it comes to your lawn maintenance, it is important that you stay involved and make certain you are getting the services you pay for and not being conned into paying for services you don’t need. Lawn care scams and shoddy service is not a problem exclusive to Georgia and Savannah; it is a common occurrence all over the United States according to Angie’s List, the service listing and review site that offers user-based rankings and reviews of service professionals in local areas. The site shares a story of one of its members who became suspicious of her longtime lawn service when her lawn’s appearance never seemed to improve. Her lawn contractor always came when she wasn’t at home, and she only realized he had been there after noticing treatment markers in her yard. She decided to see for herself what was being done and pretended she wasn’t at home on the next scheduled visit. “The technician rang the doorbell, which I didn’t answer, but instead watched as he treated my lawn.” The woman recounted in her review. “The treatment consisted of the technician walking to the backyard, placing a treatment stake in the yard, and then walking around to the front door and doing the same. He then got into his truck and drove off. Nothing other than the lawn stake was applied to my lawn.” A Landings resident who asked to remain anonymous had a similar experience with her lawn service provider. She assumed all was going well until one day she decided to walk her yard and noticed all the things that weren’t getting done. “I would estimate there are many others in my situation,” she said. “We come, and we go and have a yard service and assume all is well. I would recommend you walk your property, see what is happening, talk with your lawn provide about what is happening in your yard, new products on the market, and what you should be thinking about doing next. If you are getting ‘blow and go’ service only, you are headed for trouble.” Community Development Manager Erin Schumacher agrees it is best to stay involved with your lawn maintenance contractor to make certain you are receiving quality service. “On more than one occasion, our inspection team has contacted an owner who has either been on vacation or lives elsewhere during the summer to let them know that their lawn or landscaping needed attention only to find out that they had recently had it serviced,” Schumacher said. “Because our inspectors take photos and document the dates of their inspections, they have been able to provide the owner with the evidence they need to show that the work completed did not meet the standards and to help educate the landscaping crew on what is expected of them. Our inspection team is happy to help residents keep their property looking its best even when they are far away from home.” Residents can help themselves by becoming familiar with The Landings' Private Property Maintenance Standards and by using the Private Property Appearance Checklist Self-Assessment, Schumacher added. “When inspecting your lawn, look for bare patches and overgrown grass or weeds in the lawn,” she said. “Check to see if the hedges or edges of your yard are in need of trimming or if your planting beds have bare patches or weeds poking through the mulch, and don’t forget to look for dead or diseased trees, large branches, shrubs, or bushes. If you notice any of these things, your landscaping may need some additional attention to ensure that it is in keeping with The Landings’ Private Property Maintenance Standards.” Unfortunately, some services like lawn treatments are easier to fudge than services like mowing, which provide immediate visible results, and it often can be difficult to realize you are being taken for a ride. However, if you keep on top of your lawn maintenance needs the chances you will be scammed are greatly reduced. Following are a few tips to help you find a high-quality lawn care service.
  • Don’t hire a company that won’t inspect your grass before starting work. Make sure your technician measures the size of your lawn, understands your grass type and takes note of existing damage. Get everything in writing before you hire.
  • Be wary of treatment companies with flashy ads that sound too good to be true. If the price is extremely low, there’s probably a reason why.
  • Make sure your provider is licensed and certified as required by your state.
  • Avoid companies that encourage you to commit to service on the spot.
  • Ask potential hires about their refund policy, or if their work is guaranteed. Make sure to get it in writing. You shouldn’t have to pay for incomplete or sloppy work.
  • Make sure to get a detailed invoice after each visit detailing the scope of the work.
  • Don’t forget to view the Vendor Book housed on The Landings Association’s website ( These vendor surveys are accounts from experiences by your Landings’ neighbors and are written in their own words. The surveys included are in the original format in which they were submitted and have not been altered or edited. The Landings Association updates this resource as new surveys are received. Please help us keep this information up-to-date. If you have comments to share regarding a vendor, you recently worked with, click here to fill out a survey. To view the Vendor Book, click here. Remember, you must be logged into the site with your username and password to view the Vendor Book.

This article was originally published by The Landings Association on their website.

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