Doing business these days is hard work. People have less money to spend, there’s more competition online, you have to shout to be heard by your customers, raw materials cost more, wages are increasing…
Now I’m not here to be all doom and gloom but what it all boils down to is that running your own small business is not easy and anything that helps you out is a good thing. Asking for deposits upfront is one of those things.
When you order something that is made to measure is it not reasonable to expect to pay at least part of the monies upfront? I ask the question, even though this is what we do, as there seems a real divide of opinion over this.
For and against deposits for bespoke work
When researching online about asking for deposits or people paying deposits there were definitely 2 camps: absolutely never pay for anything upfront OR no issue paying a deposit
“if a tradesman asks for money up front, it doesn’t mean he will run off with it”
“some jobs are a lot of outlay then you wait forever to be paid by the customer”
“good tradesmen won’t require payment upfront” “doesn’t seem unreasonable to me”
“would never entertain it” “most tradesmen ask for a deposit as confirmation of booking”
Whatever your view is the truth is that making things from scratch costs time and money.
but also a weakened pound makes it harder to get good prices. Although we have good relationships with our suppliers many do not offer credit terms that allow for us to cover all the costs before we can invoice and get paid.
Our prices have barely increased in 6 years despite all the above and cashflow can be a real problem for small businesses like us.
Made to measure
Everything we do is made to measure for you, exactly how you want it, and because of the time to get the materials in, make them up, get them painted and then fit them it can take around 2 months from the date of order before we can even invoice for it and then we often have to wait for payment.
So we hope you understand why we ask for a deposit upfront. But if you ever have any queries please get in touch and we shall be happy to discuss it. And we’d certainly be interested to hear your views so feel free to comment below or share this on social media to see what other people think.