How to protect yourself when freelancing

63 replies
Hi.

I have a question.

If you are freelancing outside protected networks like Elance and Fiverr, how to you protect your work?

How do you make sure you get paid before you deliver the final product?

The last revision of your work may be near perfect - how do you make sure a client doesn't walk away with that?

I need advice about payment terms that will also entice the buyer to work with you.

Thanks
#be protected freelanging #be safe freelancing #freelance #freelancing #protect
  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    Great question. In addition to running my own network of blogs and running several lists, I also do freelance writing. Usually, I ask for upfront payment. If they are legit, they would have no problem with this-especially if the deal is under $200. Be careful of people who ask for free CUSTOM samples though. If they don't pay for the custom samples or the deal doesn't pan out, you still own the content since the 'prospect' didn't pay for it. You can submit it to other blogs with a link to your site or freelance site profile or you can just let others publish it for free. This way, the 'prospect' doesn't get to benefit from your work since it would be duplicate content if they try to publish it.

    Sadly, such situations come with the territory.
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    • Profile picture of the author lastreporter
      Originally Posted by writeaway View Post

      Usually, I ask for upfront payment. If they are legit, they would have no problem with this-especially if the deal is under $200. Be careful of people who ask for free CUSTOM samples though. If they don't pay for the custom samples or the deal doesn't pan out, you still own the content since the 'prospect' didn't pay for it.
      When I was freelancing I always required upfront payment. In the beginning of my career I didn't. But after being burned for $800, I only worked when I got paid upfront.

      It the only reliable prophylactic against scam artists ripping you off.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by writeaway View Post

      Be careful of people who ask for free CUSTOM samples though ...
      Never, ever agree to write custom samples.

      If a potential client can't see the value and quality in your existing samples, assuming they are good, then writing a custom sample for them will not change anything.

      Besides, a serious client will never ask for custom-written samples. Only cheap, inexperienced clients with minimal brain cells who think they are being smart will ask for that. If you are properly set up with a good range of quality samples, that's all you need, and that's all any potential client needs.

      I've been freelance writing online for over 17 years, and in that time I have only been cheated out of a payment once. It was in the early days, and it was only for $10, so no big loss.

      These days I always ask for 100% up front payment from a new client, and I usually trust an existing client and charge them on delivery of the content.

      I found that when you charge low for articles, say in the $5 to $15 range, you are much more likely to have problems of every kind with the client. When you start charging higher, say in the $25 to $100 range, and up, client are much more trustworthy, more polite, respectful and pleasant.

      If you are having problems with clients not wanting to pay for work done, then it might be because you have cheap, stupid clients. Charge more and you'll have a lot less hassle (and more money in your pocket too).

      John.
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      • Profile picture of the author cyberdenizen
        I'm a freelance writer. Some of my clients pay in advance, but some clients, especially new ones, don't want to do that because they're afraid that I might take their money and run. In that case, what I usually do is I write their articles first. Then I send them PayPal invoices when their articles are ready to be sent. I send their articles only when they have already paid me. They get their articles within hours or even minutes after sending their payments.
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        • Profile picture of the author uptospeed
          Merci beaucoup everyone!!
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        • Profile picture of the author competent123
          Originally Posted by cyberdenizen View Post

          I'm a freelance writer. Some of my clients pay in advance, but some clients, especially new ones, don't want to do that because they're afraid that I might take their money and run. In that case, what I usually do is I write their articles first. Then I send them PayPal invoices when their articles are ready to be sent. I send their articles only when they have already paid me. They get their articles within hours or even minutes after sending their payments.

          I have a better option for you, instead of sending invoice and then send the articles, send them articles in JPG format,

          that way they can read it, but they can't copy paste the article,

          it works for me everytime.
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          • Profile picture of the author uptospeed
            Thanks for all the advice!
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    • Profile picture of the author fatafat
      1) Have a contract - just a word document with the important details on it and a clause of payment.
      2) 50- 50 split- makes life easy, you are motivate to start work and motivated to finish as you get paid twice
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  • Profile picture of the author competent123
    I have a simple system

    in case of work less than 100$, no advance, people pay after that anyway
    in case of work above 100$ , i work on a milestone basis , i.e - x amount of work is done, x amount of payment is paid.
    in case of scammers, i simple put the entire chatlog on internet, they usually get the idea and pay up, i had 11 scammers, 8 paid up , google has a way of really messing your life up.

    some people are saying 50% advance is best , i would disagree, because there are two type of scammers, 1- who dont' want to pay, or cannot pay
    and those who actually want to scam you, they will open paypal dispute after you have done the work, for the upfront.

    to take that in consideration.

    in case of nutcases who are scammers and dont' really want to pay, move on, don't waste time over them, you will make far more money ignoring them, than you would crying over scammers.

    just my two cents though.

    89 clients, 11 scammers, 7 paid up, so just 4 scammers left.

    i think its a good trade off.

    on two words - MOVE ON!

    you will get scammers, live with it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Malcolm Thomas
      Originally Posted by competent123 View Post

      I have a simple system

      in case of work less than 100$, no advance, people pay after that anyway
      in case of work above 100$ , i work on a milestone basis , i.e - x amount of work is done, x amount of payment is paid.
      in case of scammers, i simple put the entire chatlog on internet, they usually get the idea and pay up, i had 11 scammers, 8 paid up , google has a way of really messing your life up.

      some people are saying 50% advance is best , i would disagree, because there are two type of scammers, 1- who dont' want to pay, or cannot pay
      and those who actually want to scam you, they will open paypal dispute after you have done the work, for the upfront.

      to take that in consideration.

      in case of nutcases who are scammers and dont' really want to pay, move on, don't waste time over them, you will make far more money ignoring them, than you would crying over scammers.

      just my two cents though.

      89 clients, 11 scammers, 7 paid up, so just 4 scammers left.

      i think its a good trade off.

      on two words - MOVE ON!

      you will get scammers, live with it.
      This is some solid advice and great way to avoid getting scammed when doing freelance work.
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      • Profile picture of the author messijack
        yes, Online jobs and freelancing jobs provide an individualistic employment opportunity for job seekers and they can Earn Money Online without any investment. Nowadays people are very much conscious about their career and most of the people are very much conscious about their payment.
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    • Profile picture of the author workoutstuff1
      Originally Posted by competent123 View Post

      I have a simple system

      in case of work less than 100$, no advance, people pay after that anyway
      in case of work above 100$ , i work on a milestone basis , i.e - x amount of work is done, x amount of payment is paid.
      in case of scammers, i simple put the entire chatlog on internet, they usually get the idea and pay up, i had 11 scammers, 8 paid up , google has a way of really messing your life up.

      some people are saying 50% advance is best , i would disagree, because there are two type of scammers, 1- who dont' want to pay, or cannot pay
      and those who actually want to scam you, they will open paypal dispute after you have done the work, for the upfront.

      to take that in consideration.

      in case of nutcases who are scammers and dont' really want to pay, move on, don't waste time over them, you will make far more money ignoring them, than you would crying over scammers.

      just my two cents though.

      89 clients, 11 scammers, 7 paid up, so just 4 scammers left.

      i think its a good trade off.

      on two words - MOVE ON!

      you will get scammers, live with it.


      ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!!! I had some ideas on this, but you suggested the idea I had, and expanded upon it beautifully!
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  • Profile picture of the author MrArr
    Hi There!

    50-50 can do. Client can pay you 50% so you can start project and you ask for the final payment when you are about to deliver the work.
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyTorrents
    Just ask for the payment upfront.

    I used to ask for 100% upfront payment and then I realized that allowing clients to pay upon completion motivates me to work more. But, if the total price of the order is more than 50$ I will ask for at least 50% upfront.
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  • Upfront payment is usually the best form of protection. Genuine clients appreciate that freelancers need to protect themselves and are usually happy to pay upfront.
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  • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
    1. Use solid contracts....
    2. Get paid first
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  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    I get paid upfront and have never had a problem.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rose Anderson
    I require a 50% upfront deposit and the rest when the project is completed. Full rights to the product pass to the purchaser when final payment is made. After three years I've only had two clients not make their final payment and that is out of hundreds of clients.

    Rose
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    • Profile picture of the author spearce000
      Originally Posted by Rose Anderson View Post

      I require a 50% upfront deposit and the rest when the project is completed. Full rights to the product pass to the purchaser when final payment is made. After three years I've only had two clients not make their final payment and that is out of hundreds of clients.

      Rose
      Same here. I usually require payment via PayPal, too. That way, I don't have to wait for wire transfers etc. to clear.
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  • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
    I generally ask for 50/50 payments for anything over $100, upfront payments for smaller projects like single articles. If it's a big project ($300-$500ish or more), I might split it into payments after increments. I've never had a client back out of paying once they've made the initial deposit.

    The point brought up earlier about custom samples is an excellent one, and worth emphasizing. Some scammers will literally try to get projects done that way. I take a "I never write a custom sample" stance, which is easier because my portfolio sites contain plenty of examples of my work, or I can refer people to my Constant Content profile (which is in itself a sign of authority and trustworthiness).
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    The simple answer to your question is get a signed contract.
    If you are dealing with sub-$100 work then a contract
    may seem like an overkill but at least state your policy
    and indicate that by engaging you they agree with this
    policy. Just saying "no refund" is a policy.

    After over 11 years as a freelancer I've only had one
    client who didn't pay the 50% balance and that was
    very early in my business.

    The vast majority of people are NOT out to rip you
    off and you are more likely to find scammers on
    the lower end of the price spectrum than the higher
    end.

    -Ray Edwards
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  • I got scammed today and it was only $10. But it still gives me a bad feeling.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
    As another copywriter told me, anything under $3,000, get it upfront.

    When you write a contact or terms and conditions in your PayPal Invoice, be clear on your timeframe for completion and EXACTLY what the money pays for, including your revision process.

    If you leave anything to chance, there are people who will take advantage.

    But as long as you're clear with your boundaries, everyone's happy.

    Remember...

    The contract protects your client too.

    Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author isadoregregory
    thankfully i have not experienced that but it is one of our occupational hazards. one of the best things you can probably try is asking for the payment before finishing your work, or a 50% down payment, at least. or if you can, drafting a contract for both parties to sign, will also be a very great idea.
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  • Profile picture of the author CyberAlien
    There are tons of ways to do this, but I think you'll find that it varies depending on the customer. Some will be okay with placing 100% in escrow whereas others prefer sending 50% upfront.
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  • Profile picture of the author uptospeed
    Thank you ALL so much for your answers!! Very helpful for a newbie.
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  • Profile picture of the author MaxTheMarketer
    Originally Posted by uptospeed View Post

    Hi.

    I have a question.

    If you are freelancing outside protected networks like Elance and Fiverr, how to you protect your work?

    How do you make sure you get paid before you deliver the final product?

    The last revision of your work may be near perfect - how do you make sure a client doesn't walk away with that?

    I need advice about payment terms that will also entice the buyer to work with you.

    Thanks
    I always do the very unexpected and risk-reverse as this puts people at ease.

    I put myself in their shoes and imagine what it is like being them right now.

    I tell them that I will first do the work, deliver and then they can pay.

    I have NEVER had so far someone who didn't pay.

    It's also an interesting psychology going on regarding prices and whether people want to pay or not:

    When prices are set low it could be that some clients really don't want to pay anything at all and that is why they set such a low price.

    Clients who realize nothing is free also realize quality takes time and time is money so they will have to set a higher price if they want better quality.

    One recent client wanted to pay in stages so I did 50% of the work and she paid 50% of the agreed price, and so on. If you're a new freelancer, you should definitively start out this way so people can see your quality.

    Realize that most people are very afraid of the internet because of the bad rep it mostly gets from the news and so forth (regarding money and such).

    Put yourself in their shoes and take all the risks and since most people are good people, and you will have to deal with very few or any at all, who exploit this.

    Also, if you do indeed face someone who didn't pay (through a freelancing site), then at least you can do your duty and give them a really bad review (though honest) so no one else has to go through it.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Originally Posted by MaxTheMarketer View Post

      I always do the very unexpected and risk-reverse as this puts people at ease.

      I put myself in their shoes and imagine what it is like being them right now.

      I tell them that I will first do the work, deliver and then they can pay.

      I have NEVER had so far someone who didn't pay.
      Give it time.

      I doubt very much any client would care less about "being in your shoes" when they skip payment and leave you short on cash.

      Doing the work first, then asking for payment is ridiculous.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by MaxTheMarketer View Post

      I always do the very unexpected and risk-reverse as this puts people at ease.

      I put myself in their shoes and imagine what it is like being them right now.

      I tell them that I will first do the work, deliver and then they can pay.

      I have NEVER had so far someone who didn't pay.

      It's also an interesting psychology going on regarding prices and whether people want to pay or not:

      When prices are set low it could be that some clients really don't want to pay anything at all and that is why they set such a low price.

      Clients who realize nothing is free also realize quality takes time and time is money so they will have to set a higher price if they want better quality.
      I do the same, and I have only been cheated once in over 17 years online. It was only for $10 and a long time ago, so no big deal.

      I also find that higher paid work attracts much more honest clients who are pleasant and easy to work with.

      John.
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    • Profile picture of the author Steve Wells
      Never do the things quoted below. I am sure that most people are honest, but if you do as mentioned below, you WILL eventually be stiffed, and it will not be a great experience for you, especially if you spent many hours, days or weeks on a project.

      Sure, in a perfect world, where a handshake is all that is needed to do business, then this might work, but those days are looooooong loooooong gone.

      I am actually an optimist, but also a realist and I use my common sense. And common sense is to make sure you get paid at least half if not full payment upfront, preferably via an invoice.

      Originally Posted by MaxTheMarketer View Post

      I always do the very unexpected and risk-reverse as this puts people at ease.

      I put myself in their shoes and imagine what it is like being them right now.

      I tell them that I will first do the work, deliver and then they can pay.

      I have NEVER had so far someone who didn't pay.

      It's also an interesting psychology going on regarding prices and whether people want to pay or not:

      When prices are set low it could be that some clients really don't want to pay anything at all and that is why they set such a low price.

      Clients who realize nothing is free also realize quality takes time and time is money so they will have to set a higher price if they want better quality.

      One recent client wanted to pay in stages so I did 50% of the work and she paid 50% of the agreed price, and so on. If you're a new freelancer, you should definitively start out this way so people can see your quality.

      Realize that most people are very afraid of the internet because of the bad rep it mostly gets from the news and so forth (regarding money and such).

      Put yourself in their shoes and take all the risks and since most people are good people, and you will have to deal with very few or any at all, who exploit this.

      Also, if you do indeed face someone who didn't pay (through a freelancing site), then at least you can do your duty and give them a really bad review (though honest) so no one else has to go through it.
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  • Profile picture of the author srmax
    I have an experience working with elance and freelancer and there until now everything goes well. In order to avoid any risk first of all it is important to select the buyers in a proper manner. You must go for those who have good reviews.

    Secondly, ask for 50% advance payment or better show a sample first and then ask for upfront payment if the quality is acceptable.

    Finally if you are serious in your work, with good reviews then no one is going to trouble you seeing your good reviews. So just maintain that and you will be happy to make money online.
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  • Profile picture of the author jillempower
    I share the same experience before with you my friend. I was tricked, gave my final product but the buyer ran away . I learned with that mistake so my suggestion is that you and your buyer or employer you do it in milestones so as the project progresses continue it when the client pays the milestone.
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  • Profile picture of the author RogueOne
    Doing the work first, then asking for payment is ridiculous.
    I agree. You've already done the work, if the buyer cancels, you are out. Custom work is not something you can sell to someone else.

    Use watermarks for graphics and send text via images.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
      Originally Posted by RogueOne View Post

      I agree. You've already done the work, if the buyer cancels, you are out. Custom work is not something you can sell to someone else.

      Use watermarks for graphics and send text via images.
      That's right.

      It's not like you can 'undo' the work.
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  • Profile picture of the author thedanbrown
    If you do good work and have delivered good results to your past clients you should leverage that in your sales process and receive upfront payment. This can even help you to raise your prices a bit and position your services as more premium
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  • Profile picture of the author curationsoft
    ask for partial payment from your clients. its your right, even in offline contract, it is necessary to ask for initial payment
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  • Profile picture of the author messijack
    Provide them a partial project review and get the parftial payment. Freelancers and Project sellers shoud have mutual understanding.
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  • Profile picture of the author androifield
    I used to do freelance stuff from people I met on fiverr, odesk, etc. and they were good people. I've never experienced people not paying (thankfully) but I experienced some form of underpayment before. Ir was for a client who wanted exceeded the number of web design revisions I normally give my clients. I let it pass though as I didn't clarify with him that were was a limit to the number of revisions.

    So I guess my only contribution here is you should clarify with clients if there's a limit to revisions (or number of edits, or number of mock-ups, whatever is applicable in your case). You can also impose a "fee" if they exceed that limit.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by androifield View Post

      So I guess my only contribution here is you should clarify with clients if there's a limit to revisions (or number of edits, or number of mock-ups, whatever is applicable in your case). You can also impose a "fee" if they exceed that limit.
      This is a very important point. While I find clients to be basically honest, most of the time, they will often try to get you to do things above and beyond the basic remit.

      Always specify exactly what is involved in a project at the outset. If you don't, things will often creep in that you didn't expect, and before you know where you are, the job becomes unprofitable, or not as profitable as you had originally expected.

      John.
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      • Profile picture of the author VinnyBock
        I always get paid up font and never had an issue...

        Creating a PayPal invoice is great way to go about it because unlike a buy button or payment request you can list all details which adds an extra sense of security.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    I always required a 50% deposit before I would even start. In addition, all work was submitted with watermarks on it so it wouldn't be used before paying for it. Only after the final payment was made would I deliver the work with no watermarks on it.
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    • Profile picture of the author messijack
      If you have a direct contact with the freelancers, then under payment process will not be happened. Both the project providers and freelancers should have a direct deal without any mediator in Online Jobs.
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  • Profile picture of the author jazbo
    50-50 or milestones. More importantly I have found is to make sure clear parameters are agreed otherwise "mission creep" doubles your workload.
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  • Profile picture of the author institutenucleus
    freelancing holds meaning of self employed...
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    • Profile picture of the author MissTerraK
      My standard for doing business is to get payment upfront after many lengthy discussions ensuring that I completely understand what is wanted and making sure the client and myself are on the same page. I offer a 100% money back guarantee if the client isn't completely satisfied and to date, I have never been asked for one.

      On the other hand, when I work for many offline companies, after work is completed, I send an invoice and receive payment by company check via the mail or postal service, if you prefer. I have found that many offline companies and corporations don't even have a PayPal account. I have never been stiffed to date but I must admit that the very first time I awaited payment, I was on pins and needles, lol!

      Terra
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      • Profile picture of the author andrewkar
        I do SEO mostly (sometimes some general IM jobs).

        1) Try to get paid 100% upfront. If that's not possible then..
        2) At least 50% upfront, second half after job is done (or time)
        3) Never work on a paid by results basis.
        4) Never take job without upfront payment (at least 50%)
        5) Yes, solid terms and conditions, contract

        Lately I had client who paid only first half. Then he stopped answering my calls and messages. I was getting a bit nervous but finally after a week or two he showed up. Then after another few weeks he finally paid. I had problems with him right from the beginning. Communication problems all the time.

        So I would add, if you have a client who don't have a five minutes for you, then run away. Surely he will give you headache later on... and especially when it comes to payment.

        There is one good thing about SEO. If one day some "smart" client will decide to cheat on me... well, I can simply tell him story about negative SEO. Anyway, so far 99% of my clients are great people, can't complain.

        As a writer you are in worst position so VERY solid screening process is mandatory in my opinion (especially when bigger $ are involved...)
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  • Profile picture of the author messijack
    Targets should be completed on time and client satisfaction plays a vital role.
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    • Profile picture of the author uptospeed
      All wisdom i need to know, especially the part about being clear with the terms from the outset, and 'watermarks for graphics' and sending writing as a jpeg/graphic.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Wells
    I personally would never start a job without full or partial payment upfront. I have been doing business this way for several years, and it works well for me.

    I used to require full upfront payment, with no refunds. I still offer no refunds, but usually will take 1/2 upfront and 1/2 before final delivery. Usually the final files I show are on my server, and many times they are screens shots of the site or graphics I have done.

    Never work for free, or work without any payment when working online.

    I also send them an invoice, with all the project details listed out in the comments field of the invoice, so there is no misunderstanding. Thankfully I have had no problems. But if you do not keep your end of the deal, expect problems.

    When doing digital work, such as graphic design, web design, etc, refunds are out of the question. Before someone hires you, they should see your portfolio, and understand your design skill level and your style, and base their decision on that. ( I guess if you completely misrepresent your work, and what your going to do for the client, then a refund should be given)

    Another thing to discuss upfront is how many revisions you are willing to do for the price quoted.

    Be clear, make sure you have what your agreeing to do for X amount of dollars listed out, in a clear and simple list, so that there is no confusion whatsoever.
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  • If you have an account in fiverr they automatically pay you before you work for their orders but in freelance it needs to have a contract until you both agree to terms and conditions that you discuss.
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  • Profile picture of the author Shannonn
    Banned
    There will always be questionable projects because nowadays there is no trust among people. Everyone wants to trick and fool others, take their money and walk away without looking back. I agree that the best way to do it is to ask 50% upfront and the rest when you have finished the work. Do not provide custom samples no matter how desperate you might feel. It is like in the dating world: they say they'll call but never do )
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  • Profile picture of the author YourOnlyWriter
    Banned
    I protect my business by asking 100 percent upfront fee all the time.

    Two reasons why I have the gall to ask (not demand) for it:
    1. I operate a tax-paying online business. It gives me the edge over some fly-by-night (and tax-avoiding citizens?) freelancers.
    2. I have developed my business and my writers' knack in writing. Why can't I if I've clocked in almost 10 years of writing and business management experience?
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  • Profile picture of the author sahabdk
    As employer I usually pay after the work. I would not hire someone if I hadn't seen the work. You just need to trust your employer. UNLESS it is a big project, then you can ask to be prepaid for half of it.

    If you had been paid by your employee before after the work then it is whole different story...

    Hope it helps
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    • Profile picture of the author YourOnlyWriter
      Banned
      Originally Posted by sahabdk View Post

      As employer I usually pay after the work. I would not hire someone if I hadn't seen the work. You just need to trust your employer. UNLESS it is a big project, then you can ask to be prepaid for half of it.

      If you had been paid by your employee before after the work then it is whole different story...

      Hope it helps
      At some point, I am an employer as well.
      For whom?
      For my writers.
      In their case, they deliver first before they get paid. Why? Because that's in our contract and they're comfortable at that because I only hire in the local. They get to see me face-to-face.

      But in the case of virtual employer-employee relationship, it's not a one-sided trust kind of thing. The employer should trust the employee and the employee should trust the employer as well. But in most cases no one would like to give way because of the not-so-good experiences they might have experienced in the past.

      In this case, what I do is simple.
      If one can't stomach to pay me upfront even after mentioning that I can give my business' tax identification number for his reference, I move on and happily accommodate the inquiry of another client.

      I stick with my business management style.
      To date, it has served me well and I'm super satisfied.
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      • Profile picture of the author uptospeed
        Thank you, it is good to see things from an employer's perspective...
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  • Profile picture of the author MarketMaster13
    My formula always works for me: I usually ask for 50% upfront on the start of the contract,30% on sample delivery and the remaining 20% on the final delivery of the work done.
    Its the best formula to avoid stammers though some clients don't like paying an upfront fee.
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  • Profile picture of the author messijack
    Hi,
    As fatafat said, freelancers should make a proper agreement with the clients, before starting their projects. You can Earn Money Online, but you should choose your right way. In agreement the major things should be followed.
    1. Project duration
    2. Project Value
    3. Penalty value (If projects are not deliveriung in time)
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by messijack View Post

      Hi,
      As fatafat said, freelancers should make a proper agreement with the clients, before starting their projects. You can Earn Money Online, but you should choose your right way. In agreement the major things should be followed.
      1. Project duration
      2. Project Value
      3. Penalty value (If projects are not deliveriung in time)
      Just 8 posts behind you and you include a self-serving link in the body of a post. Isn't that supposed to go in your signature? Have you read the rules of this forum? You should.
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  • Profile picture of the author Fazal Mayar
    I make sure I subscribe to a good freelancing site then ask up front all the time. Its like for solo ads or any else buying, you want to make sure the other person has good ratings or portfolio
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  • Profile picture of the author pinkgorilla
    It's best to have the client pay a percentage of the overall fee before you start. Then you get the rest of the money once it has been approved. On Fiverr it's safe as well, they pay all the money to you but it is held by Fiverr until the client has approved the work.
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  • Profile picture of the author happyslob
    Wow, very interesting question...

    I've done more offline freelance writing than online, so I'm not sure if this perspective will help - but I hope it will!

    Generally, with any freelance assignment, you are expected to hand in the finished piece before you get paid. Any issues with content are ironed out, and then payment is sent. But, with offline sources (magazines, etc) they are generally known and have a good reputation and would never think of not paying.

    I think in my years of freelancing I only ever had an issue once with non-payment. With online freelancing, I can totally see why you'd want to have at least a deposit before you begin working.

    Hope this helps!
    Christina
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  • Profile picture of the author executed
    best way to protect while doing freelancing is to use escrow server before starting work or you should refer a review of the customer before doing business with them. If they are having good reviews then go with them without advance payment otherwise you should take some advance payment.
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