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Thread: Non-paying client - What do I do?

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    Non-paying client - What do I do?

    Hi all,

    Scenario:

    Client needed me to work on laptop because laptop was slow.
    Picked up laptop and fixed it.
    Dropped off laptop at client, client signed job card.
    Week later client complains that laptop is SLOWER than when I collected it. ( Doesn't e-mail or call me telling this, only tells me when I ask for payment ).
    Client hasn't paid me yet for job. ( Doubt she will )
    Client said she will call me during this week to come do the laptop again, but this time she wants me to do it onsite. ( According to the client nothing was done on the laptop but I'm still charging her ).

    So now it's Thursday, nothing from the client yet. ( They COD . no 30-days ).

    If the client found someone else to "fix" it, can I still hold her liable for the call-out fee? Because I DID fix the damn thing.

    How should I approach this?

    Wait till till Monday, call the client as say, "Haven't heard from you yet with regards to the laptop, can we make an appointment?"

    Thx guys

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    Gold Member vieome's Avatar
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    Clients like that I just leave them and call it a freebie or pro-bono. If you put in spares like maybe upgrade RAM or something then you have problem, but if all you put in was time, just let it go. Computer speed problems are sometimes a problem of user perception. Once had a client who complained computer was slow, and it turns out what she meant was her internet connection was slow. Sometimes a computer is infected by what I call an external virus, the damm user does not know how to use the computer, and if she is one such person, chances are she willl mess the computer further and really need your help, that is when you ask for your payment.

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    New Member Kimanne's Avatar
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    I agree. You are probably not the first and won't be the last. People like that just go from one IT guy to the next so that they don't have to pay. But like vieome says maybe one day she will phone as she has run out of options. Then it will be pay time. Payment for the first and COD for the next.

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    Moderator IanF's Avatar
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    One way to handle this is to say pay what you think the service was worth and you won't argue with her. The but is you will decide next time whether it is worth your while to deal with her again!
    You are in business to make a profit at a fair rate you will be able to tell if she is a worthwhile customer.
    Only stress when you can change the outcome!

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    You should tell her that the laptop is slower because she got bad Karma from refusing to pay you.
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
    ~GS Elevator

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Yep, I am with Adrian on this one, and tell her also that for every day of non payment the computer will get more slower. As soon as she pays, she will see that the computer will speed up and be super fast
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
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    Thx to all for the replies.

    There's no way I'm telling the client about Karma.

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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    Sometimes it boils down to communication.

    You have to understand that some of us are technically challenged. When a computer packs up, you clever guys can just press a button and it will work again, so why do I have to pay you so much for repairs?

    Maybe by explaining to us old geezers, housewives and other technically challenged people exactly what is wrong and what you are repairing, they will understand that going to the next guy is not going to solve their problem.
    Bad perceptions and wrong assumptions are business bugs that we should avoid at all cost.
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    The problem with fixing a slow computer is that you can fix it and the user can put it right back where it was within the next 5 minutes. For example; my computer becomes horribly slow and thrashes when it runs out of disk space. When this happens I just remove a couple of movies and its all fixed. Now you do exactly the same for the customer and 5 minutes later they copy more new movies onto the PC and they're back to square 1 thinking that you did nothing.

    I suppose that it is more important to educate the customer on how to deal with the issues themselves and then make it clear to them that you are billing them for doing it for them this time and also for the time and effort you spent to teach them about maintaining their own computer. This way your bill is justified by what you taught them rather than by what you did for them.
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
    ~GS Elevator

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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianh View Post
    I suppose that it is more important to educate the customer on how to deal with the issues themselves and then make it clear to them that you are billing them for doing it for them this time and also for the time and effort you spent to teach them about maintaining their own computer. This way your bill is justified by what you taught them rather than by what you did for them.
    I agree. Do not assume that, because I have a PC, I know how it works or how to operate it.
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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