Job Payment

Bob Shoaff

LawnSite Member
OK. Here is a question on the green stuff (money not grass). Say for conversation sake you bid a job at $10,000.00. Half is labor and half is materials. Does anyone require any up front money from the customer? Do you set a limit as to how big of a job you do without asking for money up front? And last, does anoyone let customers do like a 90 day payment plan? The first question is what really interests me. It sucks if you do a big job, pay for all the materials then bust your butt, do a great job and then have the customer say, I had something come up and cannot afford all of this at once. Then that leaves you having to pay your creditors and working out a deal to get payment. Just curious on what others are dealing with. I hope I explained that all ok. Any thoughts would be appreciated.


LawnSite Senior Member
South West PA
If it is a regular customer, and not a whole lot of money, I will front the materials and collect the total on completion.

If it is a larger sum of money, or a new customer, I will get at least enough to cover the materials up front, before any work is started.

If they have something "come up" and can't pay when due, I will allow them to make payments, with intrest. You really have to be agressive on this one though. Don't let them get even one day behind.


LawnSite Fanatic
we require one third before we start, then balance due upon completion. we have arranged payment plans only a couple of times, but this was for customers we knew for a couple of years. we dont offer payment plans regularly.


LawnSite Senior Member
I have always covered my total costs up front on jobs. So if is 33.3% or 50%, make sure it covers your outlay. This way I figure all I can lose is my time.


LawnSite Member
Ambler, Pa
I always collect a deposit that is enough to cover materials. This is usually at least half the total and collect balance upon completion. I have this written in my contracts. Havn't had too much trouble collecting. Had to send a lawyer a reminder on an insurance job, but was paid within 5 days of notice.

Eric ELM

Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
Chicago, IL USA
Most business places, carpenters, plumbers, electricians, ect. ask for at least 50% down. I think it is pretty much a standard for a bigger job.



LawnSite Silver Member
If the bid was for $10,000 I would collect $4,000 prior to work commencing. Lets say the job was going to be on a three week construction schedule. After the second week I would collect another check for $3,000. Upon completion of construction and final approval of the site, I would then collect the final $3,000.

Hope this helps.


LawnSite Platinum Member
The biggest landscape job I do runs around $2500. I don't ask for any up front money.