Customers who can't even pay $5...

JFSG

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Recently, I've got a customer who constantly request for payment extension every month because he doesn't get his pay until a week or two after the due date. His hosting plan costs less than US$5/mth. It baffles me that he cannot even afford to pay such a negligible sum of money without his next payday. He's American and not from a country suffering from poverty. Interestingly, this isn't the first customer to make such an odd request. I've received a few over the years, but not many.

What are your thoughts about this? Is $5 a lot of money to you?
 

LJSHost

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If they are asking for extensions and then paying it's fine you got the money so no problem.
If they are asking for extensions and not paying then give them a few days and suspend it until you get payment.
 

Soulwatcher

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Soulwatcher
I agree with LJSHost as long as they keep making the payment then all is good. Because you really don't know their circumstances. Even though he's American he might be living in poverty or on SSI or disability. And if you're living at the poverty level then $5 is a lot of money.

P.S. before anyone chimes in with they shouldn't own a website. I want to you to think about what it would be like to live at the poverty level.
 

CaygriWEB

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unfortunally not dependece by country where you live, what kind of person you are.
I try to ask one solution payment or i prefer loose client.

Or try to suspend service.

With my actual client pay every month late, for 3 month I was kind and reminder by email. When i suspend service he pay every month 1 week before the delay!

Try it :D
 

DeguWeb

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If they don't pay, then they are not a customer - because they are not paying! I'd rather not waste my energy chasing $5, it's their problem if they can't pay and not yours - so you are well within your rights to suspend their site.
 

StartVM

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They agreed to make a payment on time. By offering them multiple extensions, you are giving them an expectation that you will do it every time and if you continue they will start getting mad when you don't offer it. I would lay down the "law" now.
 

JFSG

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If they are asking for extensions and then paying it's fine you got the money so no problem.
If they are asking for extensions and not paying then give them a few days and suspend it until you get payment.
unfortunally not dependece by country where you live, what kind of person you are.
I try to ask one solution payment or i prefer loose client.

Or try to suspend service.

With my actual client pay every month late, for 3 month I was kind and reminder by email. When i suspend service he pay every month 1 week before the delay!

Try it :D
His service was suspended 5 days after his invoice went overdue. He is requesting us to unsuspend his service and allow him to keep his service uninterrupted before he pays. Interestingly, we hasn't paid his invoice yet despite his pay coming in a few days ago according to him.

If they don't pay, then they are not a customer - because they are not paying! I'd rather not waste my energy chasing $5, it's their problem if they can't pay and not yours - so you are well within your rights to suspend their site.
$5 isn't a lot indeed, but reputation is not something we can label a price on. Finding the middle ground between customer satisfaction and business sense can sometimes be frustrating...

They agreed to make a payment on time. By offering them multiple extensions, you are giving them an expectation that you will do it every time and if you continue they will start getting mad when you don't offer it. I would lay down the "law" now.
We did inform him that this will be the last, but we haven't heard from him since. Guess he is jumping ship to another host.
 

Rectified

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Recently, I've got a customer who constantly request for payment extension every month because he doesn't get his pay until a week or two after the due date. His hosting plan costs less than US$5/mth. It baffles me that he cannot even afford to pay such a negligible sum of money without his next payday. He's American and not from a country suffering from poverty. Interestingly, this isn't the first customer to make such an odd request. I've received a few over the years, but not many.

What are your thoughts about this? Is $5 a lot of money to you?
IT does not matter from which country they are, we give extension on case by case basis, if we have a customer since long time we give them extension for few days without giving a second thought. but if it's a new customer then we do look for the reason and also how many days extension are they asking for ?

IF a customer asks for it regularly, just ask them a date convenient to customer and change their renewal date and just charge them on pro-rated basis or just waive the difference
 

lingfart

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In accounting, we have what we call materiality. It's the level of importance of something to an individual. Materiality differs from one person to another. Even if he's American, it doesn't mean that he is rich. It doesn't mean that he can easily have 5 dollars whenever he wishes.

Still, despite this, there are terms and policies that need to be followed. You are the provider and he is the customer. You have done your part which to provide service to him. He must do his part, which is to pay what is due to you. If he can't pay, then it is but right to cut the services you're providing him.

If he's a long time customer though, who has been paying regularly, maybe you could give him some slack. :)
 

JoeMilford

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I try to give people the benefit of the doubt when it comes to this kind of thing, but some people will take advantage of your good graces if you give too many extensions or cater to them too much. Sure, if they do pay regularly, it's no skin off of your back--as long as they ultimately play. I have no idea tailoring my business to customer needs within reason, but when it comes to getting paid for my time and services, I am definitely a bit more stringent.
 

StartVM

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Just one thing I thought of. By offering extensions (other than maybe the one time good faith exception), especially if your TOS states payments must be made by a certain time, it undermines your policies and make you look administratively weak from a business perspective. Just some food for thought.
 

WHGBTom

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Happens quite a lot. I think it depends a lot on their personal circumstances. If they pay in the end then fair enough, but you also get the kind of people who are just simply trying it on
 

CertaHosting

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We get people not paying $5 all the time. But the moment we suspend the service they seem to pay but always seem to blame it on us that our system didnt charge the card correctly or what ever else. It always seems to be the same people every month.

5$ isn't a lot of money you cant even buy a coffee for $5 so why do people look upon a hosting service being any different. Its small change.
 

fiz

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I'm too late to the party. But i think we can always work to provide ease to our clients. No matter what hosting plan they are using, i mean how expensive or cheaper plan they are on. I've seen above that lots of people suggested to suspend the account. Yes, that could work too. But i think it is better if we try to work with them to make it easy for them. Like re-adjust their billing date according to their payday. But yes if that keeps happening then they are just testing your limits, then you can not only suspend but add a late payment fee after the grace period. But we prefer to work with out clients and it always works for us. Being nice won;t hurt, But don't be too nice and let them use you. Know when to stop. This is business after all.
 
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