HOUSTON—Some Houston homeowners say a local lawn care company took their money, but didn’t take care of their grass, and wound up leaving them in the red.
But Dennis Condon, owner of two lawn care companies, Nature Green and Best Chemical Lawn, doesn’t see it that way.
I-Team: “A lot of folks say you took them for a lot of money, is that any way to do business?”
Condon: “Well that’s absolutely not true Jeremy. We do a great service Jeremy.”
That “service” began with a phone call promising free soil testing and analysis, according to Nature Green customer Sandra Brents. It ended, she said, in frustration and anger.
“I would say you are a real louse and you are despicable,” Brents said.
Brents said she hired the company to take care of a few brown patches in her front yard, but a week after she paid, Condon threw her a curveball.
“Guess what, we did the treatment, but you need something else,” Brents said Condon told her.
That something else was termite treatment. After that, she said, it was something else.
“Eight hundred and some odd dollars,” Brents said she paid.
But there was another problem.
“I didn’t see anybody, I’ve not seen anybody to this day,” she said.
“Oh God no, that is not true Jeremy. They have been out there seven or eight times.” Condon said.
Condon maintains Brents has it all wrong, but other consumers complained of the very same thing to the Houston Better Business Bureau. The BBB gives both of Condon’s companies a failing grade. Many consumers said they were told to leave the check under the doormat. When they checked later, the check was gone, but there was no evidence any treatment was done. In fact, one homeowner said he laid a trap for the company by placing a piece a seal on the side gate to test if anyone went in the backyard. The seal was never broken he said, meaning no one ever showed.
And then there’s the case of Jan Pawelek and her 80-year-old mother Janice.
“I think they’re just trying to take advantage of elderly people,” Janice said.
How? She said Nature Green charged her $1,200 in just two months for what the family calls piling on.
“Grub worm treatment, termite treatment, ants, aeration of lawn, fertilization of lawn,” Jan Pawelek said. “On and on, everything he could think of that could possibly be done to a yard.”
Pawelek said she gave the company specific instructions never to contact her mother again. But a few months later, the family claims the company hit her up for even more money.
“I was almost shaking I was so angry,” Pawelek said.
Condon claims it was her mother who actually called requesting service. But either way, he concedes his company should have acted differently.
“We dropped the ball on that, there are a lot of customers and we definitely dropped the ball on it,” Condon said.
The Better Business Bureau said Condon has never responded to any complaints. He claims he has done so directly with his customers, just not through the BBB.
“We solve our problems,” Condon said.
“You won’t solve a problem for everybody all the time, because you can’t please the whole world, there will always be someone that’s unhappy,” he said.
Condon claimed he has 10,000 customers, yet only uses eight to 10 technicians to service all of those accounts. Despite his claims of solving problems, most consumers the I-Team contacted said they never received a call back from his companies. Only a few said they received a partial refund.