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Billing for "Project to Project Clients"

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Hi Everyone,

 

My first potential client would like to meet with me to discuss working on a project to project basis. I am not sure how to bill this client. She wants me to coordinate an event for the launch of her company, as well as help her find an affordable apartment to sublet when she is town doing business. We meet on Monday, and I'm not sure how to approach how much of a deposit (%) to state up front. I don't know how many hours this will take to complete this project. Help please, I don't want to look foolish in front t of my first potential client.

 

Thanks

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This will be semi-difficult to price out until you know exactly what she is looking for. Event planning can be very time consuming. I know that when I coordinated hosting a Chamber of Commerce event at a former job, they did a lot of the work, and I still put in probably 5-6 full hours preparing the room, coordinating table & chair rental/delivery, catering, and other preparation. Depending on what the client wants, you may be able to hire a banquet facility or the like to do the above, but you will have to plan details (time, date, menu if food, deciding who to invite and sending invitations, press release if desired, etc). My humble guess is at least 10 hours, but again it really depends on what the client wants

 

As for the apartment, that can also be time consuming on your part. I was in property management for years, and trust me, you really want to see the apartment, not just go off the internet. Your name is on the line when you refer someone. Plus, the documentation required when renting an apartment (even a short-term one) requires a lot of personal, credit type info from her, which she may or may not feel comfortable giving you. I would recommend that if she is only going to need a short-term apartment, check out corporate apartments. They are furnished, all utilities paid, etc, and are geared to business people. The companies are also a lot more open to putting the apartment in the name of the business. I would check out Oakwood Corporate Housing or try www.apartments.com for your area to see whats' available.

 

I'm not too sure what to suggest as for the deposit up front. I guess it will depend on how comfortable you are with the client, and exactly what details she gives you on Monday. Sorry I couldn't be more help with that. Good luck, and let us know how it goes!

 

Rebecca

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I have a client like this and I just figured out how many hours a month she thought she would need and we agreed pn a monthly price for 10 hours. I did not ask for a deposit, but I did bill her after 5 hours for the full 10 hours. After this she pays for the 10 hours ahead of time.

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Get your story together in your own head before going to the meeting. You can decide what you want for a percentage deposit -- that way, the math is always the same.

 

You will need to take the information that you and the client create during the meeting away to work out your specific plan. But, you can ask her about her limits and specifics.

  • Does she have a budget limit
  • What does she need done first
  • What can wait until next month or next payday.
Then, you can give her a more specific estimate and projection. Getting it planned from your involvement will make it possible for her to have better planning for the event and the moving event.

 

 

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What I do is estimate what I think the minimum amount of time spent on the project will be, then charge them 1/4-1/2 up front, then I bill on a weekly basis after that so that I never have too much unpaid time out and the client has a running total of time spent compared to what still needs to be done on the project.

 

 

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