Time spent handling billing.

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Greg Huffman, May 10, 2007.

  1. Greg Huffman

    Greg Huffman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 12

    How much time per day do you guys spend on billing? Including writing the bills and taking the checks to the bank. Also, how long do most of you guys have to wait between doing the work and actually having the cash in hand.

    Mine is entirely too long and would love to hear some tips on getting my money faster.
     
  2. ECS

    ECS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,733

    I do all my bokks with Excel. From Jan 1 - May 9 of this year I have spent 66.05 hrs on my books. That includes everything, including building new spread sheets or reformating the ones I have for new customers.
     
  3. mr mow

    mr mow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 393

    10 min a night, every night keeping track. 30-45 min a month printing bills. 15-21 days for all bill payments to come in. They have 10 day to pay from due date( the first) to pay or its a $20 late fee and bills are sent out on the previous 15th and i go by post mark for late fees.
     
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Well, it depends, but some things that have helped are making fewer deposits...
    Back in the early years I ran to the bank daily, nowadays if I show up once / week it is a lot... That helps in more ways than one, it is not unusual I show up twice / month only, it really cuts the cost in terms of time and fuel wasted, but most of mine are checks, not so sure if I'd be for holding large sums of cash... Just have to be careful not to overdraw the account, I like keeping a higher minimum balance, usually I find keeping 2,000 minimum in the account a good safety zone, I've seen some guys keep 10,000 lol, but the thing here is to have enough in there to cover ALL your bills and then some, at all times.

    As for getting paid, right when I grab the last piece of equipment to service the lot (whether blower or whatever), I step inside the truck and hand-write out a receipt, takes 1-2 minutes, stick it in my back pocket and go do what I went to grab the equipment for... Then, when I'm close to the front door of their house, I stick it in there some kinda way, customers send me check in the mail.

    As for accounting, my deposit slips turn out a carbon, my bank does the rest, that is all I need.
     
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Another thing that helps me greatly is automated / electronic banking.

    Thou to some degree it's personal bills, it still helps save time (and stamps, envelope, check), plus I never catch a late fee. My electric, phone, and cable tv bills are automated, comes out every month without me bothering with bills and checks, etc... My rent is the same way, so is the Ztr payment, that's 5 bills every month I never worry about.

    I also set up an electronic money market account via Capital One, with that account I can withdraw / deposit money to-from any account of mine. And that is how I pay myself, every month it automatically withdraws from my business account and deposits into my personal, yet one more thing I don't have to waste time on is getting paid (writing myself a check and then depositing it in my personal account), I don't see my personal bank but maybe twice / year nowadays. Oh yeah, and since checks aren't free either, it saves here also.

    You just have to make sure there is always enough money in the account.

    Time-wise, it took some time to get it all set up, but nowadays I spend an hour or two per month making deposits, and that's about all I spend time on... The schedule is still a bit of a pita but one schedule lasts 2 weeks, and it tracks what is to be done / when is done / if is been paid, probably 4-6 hours / month spent there, maybe 10 hours / month all in all, or thereabouts.
     
  6. Greg Huffman

    Greg Huffman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 12

    What about electronic billing services? Some say they will get your money in a few days from the date work was done and deposit it directly into your account. I think they were charging a little less than 3% of the billed amount. I saw an add for one a little while back but didn't join. 3% could be added to the bill charged to customers and I don't think it would raise a red flag, but I can't find the site again now. I don't remember what the name was.

    Have you ever used one of those?
     
  7. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,085

    At the beginning of every month, I spend an hour entering the monthly invoices on Quickbooks. I bill out individual services when they are completed. All payments must be received w/in 30 days or will be subject to our credit card's current rates. I enter checks as they come in & the bank is about 10 minutes away.
     
  8. Midwest Lawn Services

    Midwest Lawn Services LawnSite Member
    Posts: 211

    We send invoices on the first of every month, and expect payment by the
    15th. I would say I spend about 15 minutes each day keeping records of everything.
     
  9. howardsells2000

    howardsells2000 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 355

    It takes me about 2 - 3 hours at the end of each month. It's really a pain in the butt. I bought Quickbooks Pro to make things simpler but it's to complicated for me. I don't use it.
     

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