How to make sure your clients always pay you

The chances of thievery are very high. Here the artist, who’s designed for brands including Boston Beer Company, Harvard Business School and MIT, offers her top tips on what to do when your client becomes reluctant to pay…
How should you deal with clients who ask you to start working on projects for free? It depends on the amount you’re owed. This ain’t the grocery store, people! If a client is playing hardball about a price, tell them that X hours of work are Y dollars, so if they’d like to pay less, you can remove a feature or a round of revision to lessen the hours it will take to complete the project. Words: Bryce BladonIllustration:   Nicole Martinez
The full version of this article first appeared in   Computer Arts issue 233, a special issue with a photochromatic cover revealing the UK’s top 30 studios, plus how to craft the perfect folio and make more money as a student… It’s more like walking into a car dealership and asking to take the car home without a deposit. In the latest post in our mini-series on clients from hell, New York-based designer and illustrator Nicole Martinez talks money. What if a client tries to lowball you? Oh, the dreaded free sample. Itemised contracts or statements of work help a lot here. If your portfolio showcases the type of work they’re interested in, then you shouldn’t have to provide them with anything before they hire you. As freelancers, we need clients – even the terrible ones. Getting paid half upfront is a great way to avoid this issue. But we’re not.

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