Invoicing on the spot...??

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by GarPA, Dec 27, 2002.

  1. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    Trying to be more efficient on the finance end of the business. Usuallly I do invoicing one time per month..usually in the first week or so of the month following. I will continue monthly billing for the contracted maintenance accounts. I do a fair amount of one time landscape related work and am thinking I should put the invoice in their mailbox at the job's completion instead of waiting until my normal billing cycle. Reason I've not done this is because I dont like mixing the grunt work with the paperwork although I know many do it this way. I've just not wanted to carry the supplies in the truck to do this and then have to remember to merge my copies into the monthly billing cycle. ....we all know theres only so much room in the trucks for all the stuff we carry. If you do/have done on-the-spot billing has it worked ok for you? Cash flow is not an issue ...rather, I'm more concerned about the need to render a prompt invoice while Mr Customer is "happy" with the work I just completed. thanks for your 2 cents
     
  2. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    For me, all aerating, seeding, mulching, landscaping work done for one time jobs are billed at completion. Regular customers get billed as usual.
     
  3. xpnd

    xpnd LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 378

    I prepare a formal estimate either on the spot for simple jobs or at the office and forward via fax. The customer is required to sign the estimate agreeing to the purchase price and to us authorize to be on the premises and perform the work. For small simple jobs (mulching, aeration and the like) the customer pays 100% up front. For larger jobs the customer pays 100% materials and 75% labor up front and the remaining 25% within 10 days (self addressed envelope included). The 75% labor puts you above the break-even point and the remaining 25% gives the customer some power to fix things that may not be to their exact liking. Case in point, a husband signed off on a total rework of beds and shrubs including mulch identified as cypress. He liked the change in appearance and texture from the old shredded pine bark mulch. After finishing the job, wife calls and states the remaining 25% will not be paid because I used the incorrect mulch. I requested she look at the estimate her husband had and then call me back. I received my 25% in the time it took the post to deliver it, they are still my customer although the husband has absolutely no interface with me.
     
  4. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Although we don't do it, I think it's a good idea. Especially with one-time customers and also about the fact the job is still fresh (and happy) in their minds.
     
  5. BigJim

    BigJim LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 382

    90% of my customers pay on the day,if there not home I leave an invoice with an envelope so the money arrives a few days later,great for the cash flow.
     
  6. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    ok ....I need to keep the paperwork in the truck...encourage them to pay when they're still 'happy'...thanks for the feedback....BTW...most of my home service one-time providers(plumber, tv guy, etc...) hand me the bill when they're done...so I need to get my act together and do the same...Happy New Year guys!!!....and dont party too much....we cant do this work with Hangovers!!!
     
  7. B. Phagan

    B. Phagan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 95

    Bill 'em early and often.....whatever you've got to do to improve cash flow.......
     
  8. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    psssstt, buy some of Bill's books. They have some good info in them. sshhhhh :waving:
     
  9. B. Phagan

    B. Phagan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 95

    Hey 65Hoss,

    Thanks for the plug and by all means.....keep my "Business Booster" Books a secret!!! Before ya know it, professionals will be buying them and getting more $ucce$$ful in their businesses.....and nobody wants that, do they?
     

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