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How to Deal with Customers Who are Slow to Pay?

Many of us, probably all, have found themselves at some point in their lives as a freelance to have to deal with customers who do not pay in accordance with the arrangements agreed upon.

The obvious premise in order to make any consideration in these cases is that the first to set an example we have to be. Then tries to always be punctual deliveries and payments to your suppliers.
That said, let us instead analyze this sore that often returns to play.


When you’re dealing with customers who do not pay is important to remain calm. Okay, I admit that I have a hard first, but with time you learn also, in part (I do not believe for those affected by sudden changes in man Hulk “Zen”), to curb the instinct “killer” that hits you. So, sit down and take a deep breath. Maybe two.

# 1 Stay calm and professional

Especially if you’re a freelancer, or have an activity very small, which does not have a big capital to withstand long periods without payment, this situation may become heavy to hold. However, it is important not to panic or become irritable. These were in fact the risk is to trigger a defense mechanism for the client that will inevitably lead to confrontation, with consequences clearly identified.

# 2 Intervene promptly

Having disposed of the inevitable sense of anger that fills you, try to have a direct contact with the customer . It ‘important not to relegate this to one or more email denying the immediate interaction. A phone call indeed allows to stake a greater number of factors and emotions that may be crucial to solve the problem. You can communicate more openly about the problem and trust in the honesty of most people. Be frank and then gets to the heart of the matter . Please do not e-mail.

# 3 offer a solution of partial payment

Little money is better than nothing . If you see that there is no way to resolve the issue, if you have (mistakenly) entered into a clear contract with the customer or if you want to contact a lawyer for a few hundred euro, a solution might be to offer the customer a immediate payment, lower than originally agreed, and set a later date in time for the final balance. With this attitude will be easier to receive the compensation also missing at a later time.

 # 4 If you can, stop the provision of services

The new deadline has arrived, and no payment was made. Unfortunately now you got a better idea of the customer in front of you. It ‘s time to take action. Stop immediately provide goods or services to the customer . It may sound like blackmail, but it might (I say might because every customer is still a story to him with which to contend) break the deadlock in the short term.

# 5 Patti clear long friendship

Conflicts are resolved upstream making it clear the conditions under which they may arise and planning actions to be taken accordingly. Be prepared for any problems you can not lower our guard . This is the reason why the conclusion of a contract is to be considered a best practice to use forever. A clear contract with valid signatures (ie digital if available or with hard copies sent by registered mail) on both sides and detailed statement of what concerns:
  • The nature of the
  • Fees and payment
  • Production time
  • Copyright and Copyright
  • Limitation of Liability
  • Place of jurisdiction (important in case of litigation)
  • Privacy policy
These are all small and useful devices, but the most important rule of all, which I mentioned before, remains the same: keep a frank and open dialogue with the client at all stages of the project . In fact, communication is the key to a healthy and honest relationship which prevents any problem before you lose control. All this will make not only safer your finances but also your professionalism.
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