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Clients not pay this month's DD? Expenses Review

Numbers cancelled/Expenses

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Two clients emailed me saying they will not be able to pay this month's DD. It looks like, more to come. Both of them are small ltd companies. 

I will not discount the fees or ask them not to pay. I will ask them to pay when they can. 

How are you doing so far on this front? How will you handle this? 

What business expenses have you cut down on so far? I have stopped my monthly newsletters to client subscription £100 per month. I am reviewing what else. Maybe Fee protection of £2800 per year. Honestly, I do not see any value of this after many years. 

Replies (7)

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By James Green
01st Apr 2020 09:31

Clients not paying: “I know now is tough, but for me to me able to support you, I need to have money coming in just as you do. Could you pay 50%? [dont speak until after they have]

Yes - job done

No - “okay, 25% [dont speak]

At all costs keep the dd alive even at £1.

If they cancel completely, disengage; they will never pay you, and will keep taking.

Expenses: superfluous memberships of info sources, clubs, magazines etc. Sponsorships. All direct mail and telemarketing campaigns. Entertaining (but that’s been kind of forced on us), junior staff (furloughed)

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Hallerud at Easter
01st Apr 2020 09:47

Whilst not clients but tenants I endorse Mr Green's comments re trying to get something, we are trying at a minimum to get 50% rent from our tenants, we are not forgiving (yet)but deferring and will, when all the dust settles, try to make arrangements with each one to recover all or part of the arrears over x number of months (x to be negotiated).

To date it has worked .

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By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
01st Apr 2020 09:55

Depends on the client's situation.

Presumably you have been talking to them all at considerable length this past 2-3 weeks so should know everyone's situation.

if it was a shop and they are shut and there is nothing to do, then fair enough. if they are busy, then they pay. If they are just a bit quiet, then its going to depend how much work I am still doing, they might get a deferral of some of the fee for 6-12 months.

If they are looking like going pop, I would withdraw all services and advise them to see a liquidator.

Horses for courses.

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By SXGuy
01st Apr 2020 10:46

I don't have many DD but the ones I have seem to be OK at the moment.

The yearly ones who's due around this week. Some have rang to ask if we can come to an agreement. And I've agreed. I usually worked with half deposit and balance 4 weeks later. I've suggested to pay deposit and we can arrange an extended repayment for the balance. Most have been OK with this.

Some have spread it over 3 months, some 4.

Suprisingly some have actually paid the whole lot up front. I guess those are the ones who value me the most and see me as no different to another vital service.

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Flag of the Soviet Union
By thevaliant
01st Apr 2020 13:37

A huge lot of insurance will be revealed to be pretty much worthless through all this. Most insurers simply won't pay out. If pushed, they will simply shrug and say, "If we paid even a tenth making a claim we'd be bankrupt faster than you could say, "don't pay out.""

I think this whole episode is going to change the way we look at the world. Expecting everything to be 'back to normal' by June (or July) is for the birds. And whilst the government is throwing huge amounts of 'money' (borrowings) at the problem, this will need to be repaid sooner rather than later. Expect taxes to rise substantially in the next few years.

And quite a few of us are going to be out of work by the autumn (some permanently).

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Helen Froggett Thomson
By Helen Froggett-Thomson
03rd Apr 2020 09:52

Just a small point and I agree with the ideas mentioned, all but one that is. We've been emailing more than usual to our clients and this is the perfect time to add value and be the 'font of all knowledge' for our clients. We've even made an innovative flow chart to show the main options (not seen anyone else do one). And a straight talking video, which has been viewed over 5,000 times on facebook. Hell, we've even had new clients in from it (which was not the idea!)

So if you are going to stop your 'non essential' £100 a month client mailing subscription, what about considering using the MailChimp free service? Just an idea.
We've been negotiating our rent (successfully) but we've kept on our PR person (me) - for now at least. We've had clients contact us and say 'we've cancelled all our DD's but we kept yours on' and of course, some have already gone to the wall if they were already in trouble.

Funny how the ones who are being 'we can't pay, sorry #not sorry' are usually the ones who are a pain in the backside, the ones who demand the most and shout the loudest but are the 'thank less task' clients. Won't be sorry to see them go!! (anyone else found this?)

BUT I don't expect this to last in terms of clients paying their DD's - I wonder if a number of them simply forgot!? This time next month will be the acid test won't it? good luck to us all in these weird times where no one can plan anymore. Just what you're doing today really isn't it!? and what are you having for tea!!? don't mean to be flippant. Hope you're all ok? :)

Thanks (1)
By Ray051
07th Apr 2020 14:30

Our biggest 5 Clients are in hospitality with a full service, 60% of of fees. When they shut up shop I offered 50% discount before they asked, setting out what services I would still be giving them. Keeping the books up to date, Management accounts to monitor their losses and cash flow, operating the Furlough scheme for them and compliance work. They all accepted and were pleased I had offered. With the reduction in data entry allowing some staff to be furloughed we should be OK.

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