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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a new business owner and would like to see how everyone handles billing and accepting payments. Do you use the old-fashioned way of printing an invoice, sending it through snail-mail and then receiving a check in the mail for payment? Or do you use a software program(s) to handle everything? If so, what do you use? Also, for processing Visa/Masterdcard, am I really going to have to pay anywhere from 1.85%-3% for every transaction?! Thanks in advance!
 

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QuickBooks, picking up a check on completion (as it stipulates on our contract), CC payments done over the internet (we pay 2.2% on each transaction except AMEX which is higher). The only "invoices" I send are for other contractors who buy from me wholesale. I generate an invoice in QuickBooks and email it to them, and usually get their payment via snail mail.
 

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Quickbooks. Invoices are either delivered by hand during the project or are emailed. They are typically sent two days before a progress payment is needed so the customer can have the funds available that day.

I take cc's via Paypal for smaller jobs and on larger jobs where the customer elects to pay with a cc and miss out on the cash or check discount of 3%.
 

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with homeowners i ALWAYS collect a check or card before i leave the house...ALWAYS!!!...with larger jobs i explain -nothing down, but paid in full the day the job is complete.

with builders i mail them an invoice and typically get paid in 10-30 days...i do invoices nightly....i finish a job, the invoice is in the mailbox

i fought credit cards.....finally decided your not a real business unless you accept them...i realize some customers(many) prefer them.....i may get the first job, but lose the repeat job because i dont accept credit cards....not everyone has $1000 in their checking account to replace the leaky water heater....im losing them

yes i pay 3%.....what i did was average out how many pay w/ check vs credit card...then just add .50 cents a hour or whatever you figure your losing to your hourly wage....the customers are paying the 3% in the end...not me

i dont have a smart phone...i use a old fashion 1970's card swiper, then run them when i get home........i regret not accepting them sooner
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for your input everyone! Was very helpful! I'm in the process of opening up and this is definitely the portion I am not looking forward to. I think 3% - even 2% for CC use is highway robbery. Even just at 2%, a $50,000 job means the CC company gets $1000?! Jeez. Even though that charge can be passed onto the customer, that's steep. It is what it is though. I can't not do CC payments because of it.
 

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i wouldnt accept CC for $50k

$2000 is pretty much my limit....ive had homeowners pay me 3% more so they can use it on $5k jobs

most homeowners here in WI pay by check...i think its a midwest thing
 

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I've been a residential service electrical contractor for 20 years and do what I can to keep it simple. All work is COD and credit cards are gratefully accepted. Average invoice is under $1,000 so the 2.75% isn't much. I use 2-part invoices from office supply stores or WalMart. I occasionally email statements from the office, usually to show a zero balance. Work orders/contracts are scanned and emailed or paper-copied for projects longer than a day.

Keep in mind that services diminish in value over time so COD is the best way to go. Otherwise someone will be going over the emergency repairs with a magnifying glass if you wait and mail an invoice.
 
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