Your Payment Collection Methods

Hey All,

What forms of payment do you accept from your residential customers, what works best for you and your customers.

I suppose the biggest issue, is time and convenience.

The latest being on my website (Pay Pal) prior too…checks and cash! Cash on the barrel head is always good;) On Commercial gigs we go Net 30 (if they don’t cut us a check on the spot)

We accept cash, check, mastercard and visa. It has only been ion the past year we started accepting credit cards, our customers love it. A lot of people these days either pay their bills online or with debit/credit cards. We had found that a lot of times people didn’t have checks to pay us so we were waiting for days for a check from the bank. Also, when people find out we take credit cards they seem to book a big job much sooner, because they don’t have to shell out the cash directly right away.

Someone over here in the Uk, is working on a payment module, which should solve a few problems.

Will let you know more when I know more.


We accept all major forms of payment.

We started collecting Credit Cards for every single residential job we book. Basically you need a card to secure an appointment. ( Like an airline)

If they dont pay the day of the appointment the card gets charged the next morning at job close out. We used to have a sickening amount of $ sitting in AR… Now cash flow is great.

We have been accepting credit cards for the past 4 years now( Visa, MC, & Disc.) I have noticed a huge portion of our clients using their credit cards to pay for their services over the last few years. It is also a priceless tool for debt collection.


We used to have a sickening amount of $ sitting in AR.

Welcome to my world. Population, Paneless Perfection.

I love that “need a credit card to book an appointment” approach. VERY good idea. I think I’ll steal that one.

We accept cash, all credit & debit cards on our mobile eftpos machines on the day

We no longer accept checks as we recieved to many rubber ones that bounced

I don’t have any commercial customers at all

I am looking at pay pal once our website is up and running

However I like the idea of them needing a credit card to make the booking I might steel this one to LOL

Cash, check or credit card. Unless you are an established customer, it is C.O.D.

Most route customers pay on the next visit. We leave the invoice and when we come back, we get payment. Large commercial accounts like builders and property managers are C.O.D. unless we have made arrangements in advance. I have little problems collecting. Window cleaning is a luxury item and most people who call can afford it. I have had some though, that I think intended to rip me off from the beginning, and there is little you can do about that.

However, most communities are small enough that people who don’t pay their bills are “out’ed” quickly. Of course, I have, in certain circumstances, walked up to people in public or at a restaurant, and asked them why they haven’t paid my bill and are ignoring my calls. I don’t feel I have anything to lose, if they fire me, what does it matter…they aren’t paying me anyway?

I would love to take a customers credit card # for their reservation but it is a risk to do that. We use First Data Processing (The nations largest) and they can fine us up to $1,000.00 per theft occurrence if they find out that someones card # was hacked,stolen, obtained while it was in your your companies possession. I dont store jack on my hard drive or any place that it can be stolen (shop break in, disgruntled employee and so on). Identity theft is huge and is growing at an alarming rate. A rep at First Data told me that a company was fined over a million dollars because someone hacked into their website and stole credit card #'s that were stored on the company hard drive. —No Thanks!!

Actually, that could be considered harassment and could escalate into a legal matter.

We use cash, checks or PayPal. we just started using PayPal but have not any ones use the service yet. Most of my clients pay with checks, no bouncers yet.

Harassment only if the person can prove a pattern and can show numerous events…one offense is only rude behavior…

So your advice here to forum members is to risk that someone won’t consider it harassment and act?

I am simply telling you what I have done. I am not giving you advice or telling you what to do, you have to make your own decisions. In 22 years of being in the industry both window cleaning and commercial cleaning, I have written off less than 3% of my invoices. The Federal Debt Collection Practices Act spells out what you can and cannot do to collect your invoices. Walking up to someone and asking them why they haven’t paid their bill is not harassment.

It doesn’t sound professional, either.

But it could FEEL like harassment to the recipient, and they could pursue action, right?

Does the [I]Federal Debt Collection Practices Act[/I] supersede local laws? I wouldn’t want to explore.

Why don’t use just confront the person at their place of business. That is not crossing any lines there, and often by meeting them in person you can get your money. If you go to a restauruant or somewhere else you make it appear like you are a stalker or something.

There are many other options you can use so you don’t feel like you need to resort to the measures you spoke aobut. Like charging higher prices to avoid those that are slow pays. Making it clear what the terms of payment are from the start. Keeping good records and sending a late notice after the first few days of being late. Charging late fees or 2% intrest per month or so forth.

But embarrasing someone in a non-business setting is definitely crossing the line, and can open a can of worms.

I appreciate your position and your feedback. I do not resort to confronting someone in public until all other avenues have hit dead ends. I will work with my customers until they show me that they are not responding. If I run into someone who owes me money when I am out, I will ask them for payment. If they are embarrassed, it is because of their actions…or failure to act that is the issue.

I am not a politically correct person. I believe political correctness is the biggest threat our society faces today. After numerous letters and telephone calls have been ignored and not returned, I will go to their place of business to ask for payment. If they won’t see me or talk to me, I will wait until I run into them somewhere and I will ask them for payment. If they feel ashamed…they should be. When I hire people to do things for me, I pay them. I expect the same from others.

I have only had to do this a handful of times over the years. Not only have I gotten my payment, most are still customers.

How does accepting credit cards work? How do you process them and what are the fees? Do you keep a credit card machine at your office or do you file the information over the internet?

If it’s possible, I would like to be able to charge a card before I leave. I’ve already got everything to start printing invoices from Quickbooks online right out of the truck… It would be awesome to get paid too before leaving the job.