May 25, 2018

Reader Kurt Hamel on 100% up-front

Reader Kurt Hamel replied to my recent message about asking for 100% up-front payment (shared with permission):

Hi Jonathan, I find the best method for me (I primarily do websites and optimization for law firms), is 50% up front and the other half within 30 days (not at completion) - it’s still the 100% without any requirements strung on, but I just feel people for some weird reason are more comfortable paying the other half at a later point rather than a full lump sum. This really only works for better clients though - if I was working with the level of client when I started out, I would always be chasing them down for the second half. Good to work with professional, well established businesses. Thanks, Kurt

Thanks Kurt!

Yep, 50% up front + 50% in X days is my fallback position when I get pushback on 100 up-front.

The nice parts about asking for 100% up-front first are 1. that a surprising number of clients will agree to it without question, and 2. if they don’t, it gives you a bigger area to negotiate.

If you start with 50/50 you have less to concede.