How to reduce risk when sending upfront payment?

Dr. McKay

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#1
I am have a web project and I contact the web developer they offered me $480 for it and requiring me to pay 30% upfront payment (approx $144) first to start working on my project. I checked their websites and they worked for more other clients and I think that I can trust them although this is the first time I need custom work from them. The problem I am caring is which payment methods I should use to send money to them without risks if they don't deliver works on time or in the case I can not get their work then I need get my money back. Should I use Paypal or pay them via a credit card? and how to make sure they will send money back to me if they can not finish the work?
I am contacting them directly without via any freelancer sites.
Can you guys share me your advice or experience how to reduce risk when sending upfront payment?
 

LJSHost

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#2
I would say no, never pay for anything until you can see the finished product even more with digital services. Lot's of scammers on these freelancer sites and I've heard plenty of horror stories.
 

AlbaHost

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#3
Just use escrow service and you are safe.
 

vinaya

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#4
Use paypal or payza. These payment processors have dispute features, which is not available on other payment gateways such as neteller, skrill, bitcoin etc.
If you send upfront payment through paypal or payza, however, do not receive your work, or your job is not completed. You can frecover the funds by filing disupute for the transaction. Because if this feature paypal and payza are the safest payment processors.
 
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The best and safest way i would proffer is to use escrow when it comes to personal or first time transactions.It will save a lot if we can go through that extra effort of safeguarding our hard earned money than loosing out.

It is also good to use tested and trusted merchants as it will increase confidence and you can easily get back funds if transactions do not go through.
 

Dr. McKay

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Use paypal or payza. These payment processors have dispute features, which is not available on other payment gateways such as neteller, skrill, bitcoin etc.
I know Paypal has this feature but it is not maintained you will get your money back in the case you have problem with your provider.

Just use escrow service and you are safe.
How does escrow work? how to use it?
I heard of this sometimes but I have not used it yet.

The best and safest way i would proffer is to use escrow when it comes to personal or first time transactions.It will save a lot if we can go through that extra effort of safeguarding our hard earned money than loosing out.

It is also good to use tested and trusted merchants as it will increase confidence and you can easily get back funds if transactions do not go through.
Can you share more details how to use escrow? Have you tried it?
 
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#7
Escrow in simple terms means getting a trusted middleman that will mediate between the buyer and seller.Example is when A and B want to transact,they contact a trusted C as there go between.A sends funds to C and B sends the equivalent to C also,In return C sends to both parties and confirm receipt of funds to each-other.In some cases C as the escrow charges little fees.
 
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#8
The best way to reduce this risk is using a trusted middleman for handling both your work and his money, that way both of you are safe: you'll get your payment and he'll receive a good job or in this case viceversa since you're the one sending the money. If you don't find a middleman, or a company that can do this for you, you can always ask for some kind of proof about the job he's doing: ask for weekly advances, or even come to an agreement where you pay him a % of the job at first and the rest of it when it's finished.

There shouldn't be a problem as long as the people you hire have a good reputation, try not to hire total strangers or newcomers at first.

Cheers!
 
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#9
The former elance.com now upwork.com serves both seller and buyer of services with the milestones feature.
 
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#10
Use a trusted website like Paypal. I have just been using Paypal for about a month and I have been happy with the results I'm having with it and I would highly recommend it for you to avoid unnecessary risk on receiving or sending payments.
 
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