SitePoint Sponsor

User Tag List

Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. #1
    Roger Willis
    SitePoint Community Guest

    Good Riddance to Deadbeat Clients

    Notice: This is a discussion thread for comments about the SitePoint article, Good Riddance to Deadbeat Clients.
    __________

    I have been burned twice in the past. I started using contracts this year and am making sure everyone pays half up front and the other half when the project is finished. After final payment I give them the product.

    The last one I got burned by I did not use a contract. Double whammmy! I will always use contracts from here on out to save my but.

    I currently am using echosign.com which gives 5 free signatures a month. Are there any issues anyone know of with e-signing??

    thanks,

    Roger Willis
    RW Media

  2. #2
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Great post! Hate clients like this. If you don't have the money don't make the order

  3. #3
    SitePoint Evangelist
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    479
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Next thing you know, there'll be an article for deadbeat web designers. :D

  4. #4
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    17
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    This article touched my heart...

  5. #5
    I hate Spammers mobyme's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Sunny Snowdonia
    Posts
    662
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Zan View Post
    Next thing you know, there'll be an article for deadbeat web designers.
    And there should be. It is absolutely incredible the amount of tales we are told by clients of foolishly paying deposits or initial milestones only for the designer to disappear without trace. In fairness this seems to happen more with transactions across borders and where the clients are trying to get something on the cheap. Salutary lesson for both sides is : No contract, No Escrow = No deal.
    There are three kinds of men:
    The ones that learn by reading.
    The few who learn by observation.
    The rest of us have to pee on the electric fence.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Zealot somecallmejosh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    153
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Nice article. We've created a customer welcome kit that highlights (reinforces) this stuff in great detail. Much of the accounts receivable issues in the past came from the fact that "we" didn't want to broach the subject. Not now. Every new customer understands clearly what'll happen as a result of non-payment and non-communication.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Waterford, Wisconsin
    Posts
    3
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I used to abhor collections and avoid it at all costs (my own costs, of course). But, now I've discovered that clients value your work only if YOU value your work. I've also learned that you need to educate them on exactly what it takes to create and maintain an effective site. I explain how that site will put $$ in their pockets. It's an investment, like any other advertising/marketing. Somehow the mention of value (translate: money) for them puts everything in a new perspective!
    My favorite quotes:
    "You can't take my site down. We use that to sell our products."

    "I spent #3,500 on brochures that I mailed out! I need that site up right now."

    HAHAHA You have to wonder at peoples' logic.

  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy Black Max's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    4,029
    Mentioned
    12 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'd be interested to see a similar article for pro bono design contracts.

  9. #9
    SitePoint Zealot FaridHadi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    170
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    These seem like some good steps that you could take to stay out of trouble.
    Thanks for a nice article.

  10. #10
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    2
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Does anyone have a contract that covers these issues that they can share? I'm sure there are many different contracts floating out on the web, but thought I'd ask here first to save time. I definitely need to start implementing a design contract. The failing economy seems to be an excuse for clients to pass on their woes even for work already done. I've had them tell me that they can't pay me until they get paid. I wish that would work for me when I go to the grocery store.

  11. #11
    SitePoint Member onefocus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Nanaimo BC
    Posts
    9
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Very good and to the point.
    Very good to read it completly.

  12. #12
    ktech
    SitePoint Community Guest
    Hutchsky, you should have Chris write your agreement. A few months ago he completed our SLA and it has already steered us through a deadbeat client situation. He's a great attorney and equally pleasant guy. Google his name and firm: Hirschler Fleischer

  13. #13
    jujuguru
    SitePoint Community Guest
    Great article, I use some of these methods already but I will definitely reviewing my terms of business and agreements before taking on the next client.

    Thanks,
    Juju Guru

  14. #14
    Design Addict helix7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    440
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by mobyme View Post
    ...It is absolutely incredible the amount of tales we are told by clients of foolishly paying deposits or initial milestones only for the designer to disappear without trace. In fairness this seems to happen more with transactions across borders and where the clients are trying to get something on the cheap...
    This shouldn't happen at all, but I'm not surprised to hear that this happens when a client is trying to get something for less than what a reputable designer would charge. My clients know that they can get design work elsewhere for much less than what I charge. But they also know the risks they would run in going to those places.

    My policy is half up front and a signed contract. No escrow.

  15. #15
    SitePoint Enthusiast ncmw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    38
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks again for a great article. Its so true. I have also found that, deadbeat clients either dont know what is required and need to be taught. Or they know perfectly well and use the devs 'kindness' for a crutch to control the dev.

    I had to take a site back from a client that later turned more income than the project was worth. Never sell yourself short, the rewards are greater than money.

  16. #16
    SitePoint Enthusiast akayani's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'd add...

    1. Take extra care working for friends
    2. Sort things face to face on not on the phone or email.
    3. If it gets tough on the phone hang up while YOU as speaking, "Sorry phone went dead."
    4. Invoice weekly not in big slabs.
    5. Don't blame yourself because clients are *****s some just are.
    6. Beware the client that doesn't need a quote... he doesn't intend to pay.
    7. If you are desperate for work you are easy prey.

  17. #17
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    7
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Always have contracts and their signature on the dotted line. Then if they do not pay, you can take legal action. If they are truly deadbeats you may still not get your money and wasted your time.

  18. #18
    SitePoint Member lutskovp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    1
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Excellent article. The most important piece to me (something I've done for years) is that I own it until it's paid for. I also host my own development server to make sure my sites stay where they should.

    My rules generally are:
    1. Don't go to work until you're hired. If there's no contract, there's no work.
    2. It's mine until you pay for it. If you paid 99% of it, it's still mine.
    3. If you violate terms, I stop working. If we have an installment plan and you fail to come through, I work on something else until you show up with a check.

  19. #19
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    0
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Great advise: If You’re in a Hole, Stop Digging.

    Thanks for this excellent article.

  20. #20
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have experienced all the annoyances that working for problem clients inevitably leads to.

    I find the remote kill switch described at ajaxkillswitch(.com) very useful as a backup weapon sorry, forum rules wouldn't let me post an easy link!

    At the very least it ensures that your website is difficult to steal before payment (assuming you put it online somewhere before this is complete)

  21. #21
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    3
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    What would be great is to have example of contracts to use, especially targeted to a specific country. I am for example based in the UK but also deal in France.

    Do you or any body have ressources to share?

    Thanks

  22. #22
    SitePoint Evangelist ramone_johnny's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Brisbane - Australia
    Posts
    434
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by ichi View Post
    "I spent #3,500 on brochures that I mailed out! I need that site up right now."
    Ive seen that before, except the idiots had put the WRONG web address on all their print material!

  23. #23
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    1
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    We need more articles like this. All too often, we are so focused on designing and working on the project that the business end (and the legal aspect) of things is neglected. As a result, we lose money because of nonpaying clients.


Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •