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Posted:  13 Dec 2012 00:07  
I recently won a bid back that I installed 6 years ago.  All existing palms were killed (tisk, tisk) and replaced in sub irrigated containers.  I get a call from the existing contractor because he wants ME to buy the sub irrigation containers from him.  He didn't get paid for them so, he tells me how much I will benefit from them and by the way, he will even sell them at wholesale cost.  Apparently building manager doesn't have any money to pay.  So I'm to let him know what I want to do before the end of the year, so he can take them out if I don't wish to pay $170.00.

Tell me this is crazy behavior!  I have left sub pots in accounts I have lost. Isn't it the property of the building??
Posted:  14 Dec 2012 14:27  
Almost all of my accounts are leases and I retain  ownership of plants and containers. When I lose one I pull everything.
Posted:  14 Dec 2012 16:19  
Subirrigation containers are typically billed with the installation costs of the job and so are either the property of the client for an outright purchase transaction, or remain our property if it's a lease.  Ask for a copy of the current vendor's service agreement with the client to determine who owns what.  Your client should be willing to help you with that.
Posted:  17 Dec 2012 19:54  
The soon to be previous contractor put them in at his expense, hoping to get paid later.  Previous building manager told him they would worry about down the road.  He has since retired.  (These have been in place over 4 years.)  Nothing in writing, it is a maintenance only account.  I feel like this shouldn't be my problem, it is between the building manager and him.  Also, once something is installed, isn't it the property of the building?  Is there an industry standard on this?  Oddly enough, he took over an account of mine that I put sub irrigation in just two years before loosing it.  It didn't occur to me to take them out.  Maybe I'm not so smart.

So if I don't purchase the containers from him, he says he will take them out.  Some of the plants are not in great shape as is, I'm not keen on him disturbing roots to re-pot.
Posted:  22 Dec 2012 17:05  
Again, it depends on the agreement between the current contractor and his client.  If the subirrigation containers were included in the installation costs paid by the client, they belong to the client.  If they are his, he may be entitled to repossessing them, but he would have to take reasonable care to repot the plants into appropriate nursery containers, not just dump them out on the floor.

Subirrigation is generally considered to be a labor-saving and replacement-saving investment on the part of the contractor, and as such is not considered to be the contractor's property at the end of the lease or maintenance agreement.  Most of us will either build their cost into the installation price or "eat" most of their cost because we anticipate reaping savings throughout the duration of the service agreement as a result of lower labor and replacement costs to the contractor. 

Bottom line: this guy/gal is sore about losing the contract and is being vengeful in removing the subs.  Too bad, but that just reflects badly on him/her.  Word gets around.
Posted:  05 Jan 2013 05:20  
Maintenance only account?  Meaning no replacements?  That would usually indicate that the customer owns the plants (and containers).  If the previous 'scaper put them in without securing payment, that's kind of their tough luck, isn't it?  I agree with Clem, sounds like they're being sore losers.  But the question of whether they have any legal right to come into the account and take back the containers sounds like something you'd want to take up with your lawyer.
Posted:  05 Jan 2013 19:30  
It's pretty simple...if the docs they submitted to the client (invoices, contract addendum showing inventory and ownership of each plant, container, sub, etc.) back up the contractor, and there's an enforceable repo clause in there that permits him access to the facility to remove his stuff, he's in the right to do so.

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