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non paying residential customers

Guest colinvansmith

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Guest colinvansmith

hi all,,


When I have customers who haven't paid, i will give them 2 cleans max. then i suspend the job until i have received payment before i start cleaning there windows again unless its a customer i know really well and know they aren't dodging we usually do. I was wondering how you guys handle these situations?


Also if you have a customer that say owes you for 2 months but you can't get a hold of them for months and months usually because they are dodging you how do you guys deal with this do you eventually write the debt off or just keep trying no matter how long, i find i eventually after months of trying give up and just delete the custy from my round.


Would be good to hear how others deal withh similar situations.

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I give a max of three cleans until I suspend the job, unless of course as you say I know I'll receive payment someday.

That is unless the job is more than 15-25pounds, but to be very honest in the last couple of years the majority of my residential customers are now in the 15-25pound bracket and 80% send cheques the rest I will catch in at some point to collect.

I've only had one customer 5years ago who didn't pay up, and after 3 cleans I kept writing and writing but no reply. Never caught him in and if I did he wouldn't answer and I even threatened with small claims court as neighbours had known I'd called, but just left it.

I still think about it every time I pass the street it bugs the hell out of me.


If someone did that again I'd be tempted to pop by and egg the windows hard, I'm good at throwing eggs as well :)

If they aint paying me money they'll end up paying someone else the money in extra to get the windows clean. ;)

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If i no they arent good payers then its two cleans max then suspended all the rest are three. Thats what i decided way back and will stick to it. However i am considering slapping on the threat of adding on an extra 10% plus milage for the few i have that have been outstanding for a while to see if that puts a rocket up there **** but most of them are good and dont have too much prob.


biggest prob is recieving cheques through the post with no bloody address on the back of them!!!! lol

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For the last problem you mentioned kars I at one point was going to leave copies for them to send with their cheque, otherwise it would not be counted as them.


You can also when you recieve cheques and you know who their off making a note of their name. and writing it down to match to future unknown cheques

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One of my customers was telling me their previous window cleaner who they had for 20 years before he retired age 70 would strike people off if they missed one payment,I thought it was a bit harsh but when you think about it any other job if they didn't pay you from one month till the next you wouldn't hang around and if you went into asda and got all your shopping and said at the check out I give you the money next month they would laugh.I use to do 3 cleans and stop but now it is only one clean and I stop then keep putting notes through to pay up,well I write a letter that no more cleans till the balance is paid and to avoid this go Direct Debit.I have a lot who use to be slow payers or forgetful pay DD.

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Guest colinvansmith

i tried the standing order thing but was a ***htmare as it wouldn't tell me the custy's address so i didn't know who was paying me but the dd option is defo something i'm going to look into, i've always avoided it incase there is a month that i can't get there windows i.e in the winter when the weather turns and its impossible to get out to work. how do you deal with with that Nearlyclean do you find it causes problems?

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You got 10 houses in a street 7 pay no problems the other 2 have missed one payment and the 3rd is on their 4th clean without paying.What do you do?Carry on hoping you get paid and they rack up a debt to you or stop and just do the 7 and use the extra time to clean 3 other houses on your round.We are all in it for the money and working for nothing is not what I'm about.Some people dont have the guts to tell you to your face to stop cleaning their windows or the time to look out for you,so they just avoid the situation and hope you just go away.I like to cut my loses low and move on,you will always get customers that miss a payment and letting them know you want regular payment for regular cleaning their windows and if not there is plenty of glass to clean keeps them on their toes once someone thinks they can pay you when ever they will,believe me I use to be one of them!

We all want to run healthy businesses with good cash flow and the one thing that can ruin a business is being owed too much money.Its your time and without sounding morbid we dont get long in this life ;)

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