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Signs for Company A, Invoice Company B

Discussion in 'Business Management' started by CanuckSigns, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. CanuckSigns

    CanuckSigns Very Active Member

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    I was just wondering if anyone else has come across any issues with this setup.

    Periodically we get asked by a customer of ours to make some signs, but to invoice another company for them (last job was a hospital that was renovating and we were told to bill the General Contractor as it was part of his tender) We get a PO from the other company, but always without fail, it takes months of hounding and following up to get paid, the most recent job is over 4 months past due, plus they are now telling me that there is a 10% holdback because the job is not completed yet (their part, not mine)

    I was just wondering if anyone else comes accross this issue, and if they have any way of dealing with it without involving our customer, who has been great.
     
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  2. 60% of my business is handled this way, it is a PITA, but nothing i can do if i want the work.

    I just try and get a name of someone at the billing company before anything starts to try a get a handle on how hard it is going to be to get my money. Some of it sits out there way too long, but in the end it comes in. have never been burned, but have one out there now that is sitting at 8 months.

    it's the nature of the beast in my niche.
     
  3. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    We've had many companies approach us with this kinda stuff.

    After getting knocked around many years ago, I developed a new approach.

    You ordering the sign, than you pay for the sign. If you want them to pay for the sign, they need to call me and order directly from me. Whomever I make the signs for is gonna be responsible for them. No 3rd party billing. I have no signed documents with these people, therefore no legal contract should something go wrong.

    Like ddarlak, it might happen you have to do this, but I would have them copied in on everything and making sure they agreed to my terms of payment in writing. We generally have no bills to go collecting after and I think it's because I'm a real pr!ck when it comes to the signing and dating of papers and contracts.


    Insurance companies are notorious for this crap. Client tells you you'll get paid when the project is completed. Their insurance company has agreed. Project's finished and there's always some hiccup why they ain't gonna pay on time. They have to find this or contact that person or whatever it is they do to get out of paying you on a timely basis, therefore making you finance this project they've agreed upon, but have no signed papers with you.

    Any third party payers/checks must be paid for up front and cleared before said project is started.
     
  4. Pat Whatley

    Pat Whatley Major Contributor

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    I'll do it, not a problem. I just treat company A like the employee who got sent in to order the job and the I'll contact company B for purchase orders. Somebody from the company who is paying is gonna sign off on everything and put their name on the line accepting responsibility for payment.

    Learned that lesson the hard way when an interior decorator told us to bill the contractor who hired them....who told us to bill the architects....who told us it was being handled by the people having the building built...who told us that all fell under the general contractors quote. We got paid by a real pissed off building owner about nine months after the job was done.
     
  5. CanuckSigns

    CanuckSigns Very Active Member

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    Unfortunatly, if I do this I risk rocking the boat of my customer, who I don't want to tick off as they are great to us (spend lots of money, don't ask for quotes for every little job etc.)

    I think DDarlak is right, I just need to find out who is responsible at company B, and make an effort to contact them before the project starts. I've never been burnt on these type of projects before, but it's almost always a 6 month minimum before we get paid.
     
  6. CanuckSigns

    CanuckSigns Very Active Member

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    This sounds very familiar!

    We got hired by a landscaping company to put up parking signs at a new school that was being built, we invoiced them, waited 2 months and were told to invoice the architect, so we invoiced him, waited a month and were told it's the Contractors responsibility, who told me it's the school board's responsibility. Ended up getting paid from the original landscape company after we told them that since they ordered them they were the ones we would go after in court.
     
  7. my projects are always hard deadline based, and my client is too big to say pi$$ off it's my way or the highway.

    i have put my foot down and said, i need contact from company B before we get started. if they can't make it happen, they always cover the costs. They can't have the project miss because they couldn't cover their bases, so it works out.

    the one i have out now is because the company B man was covering the invoices i was sending him for the first few. But, it wasn't in his job discription so when he finally got sick of it he just let it go. I now have the correct contact and in their billing system at least...
     
  8. Scott Reynolds

    Scott Reynolds Active Member

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    When dealing with large contractors, there is always a 10% retention. Thats why A was passing payment off to B. He got the signs done per his contract and passed the retention off to you. He also puts the whole sign job in his pocket hoping the general picks it up on the back side. Dirty pool if you ask me...

    Make sure you get a signed contract from one of the two..... (Sub or General)
     
  9. James Burke

    James Burke Being a grandpa is more fun than working

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    Ker-Ching! Better yet, get 'em to commit on the purchase order. Purchase orders are your best friend...use them to your advantage...or risk the scenario you're now dealing with.



    JB
     
  10. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

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    these jobs are ALWAYS the biggest PITA! But they are a necessity. Its taken me as long as 6 months to get my money due to the mass confusion. Last time this happned, the company misplaced all my contract, insurance info, and payment scheduling.....BUT do you think all that hindered them from stopping all signs to be made? HELL NO IT DIDNT
     
  11. Marlene

    Marlene Major Contributor

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    if it a local contractor, landlord or whatever who is paying for a sign, same rules apply as if it was a direct sale. if it is a national company, find out how they pay. most are 90 to 120 days. some will pay for the up front cost of the job if pushed as there are some expenses that have to be paid like paying for concrete or steel.
     
  12. SD&F

    SD&F Very Active Member

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    I get these and what I do is always contact the company that is supposed to be responsible for the payment. I don't just wait and hope it all works out. I want to know where my money is coming from and when I'm going to get it.
     
  13. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    ^^ 100% ^^​


    I'm not sure what kinda companies y'all need to use PO's and wait around for someone to finally suck it up and pay, but this is a little like wholesaling in my opinion.

    We will use PO's, we will use whatever kind of paper trail they want, but I need to know first hand with whom I'm dealing with on any given transaction regardless of the size of the sale.

    If I sign paperwork with who/whatever, how can I go after anyone if I don't know up front who it is should something go wrong... for whatever reasons ??

    My dealings are with you... the person in front of me and I can't take your sayso that company MNOP is gonna pay, just because you told me and have a PO number. Sure, almost everyone eventually pays and maybe you all have that built into your pricing, but why play the waiting game. Here are my terms, take 'em or leave 'em. Oh, and if you want me to finance your $478,000.00 job for an extra 6 months or so... I'd be glad to.

    Even if it's a repeat customer .... you're my customer, you pay me or I'll work for the next guy that's gonna pay me and keep my cash flow healthy.
     
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