I require 100% deposit on all orders for many reasons.
Once a custom order is placed, it is non-refundable.
I’ve had clients go through tough times that pulled them away from the project. While it is completely understandable that someone dealing with a personal crisis can’t focus on the design project, the custom orders already set into motion cannot be paused or cancelled, which means production will conclude and balances will be due. Basically, I’m a design firm, not a bank.
Those examples aside, there are many benefits to paying 100% up front:
· It cuts paperwork in half (instead of billing for a deposit and final invoice).
· Projects move more quickly this way, as it makes the entire order process more efficient and allows us to complete your project quicker.
Here’s an example to illustrate my point: My vendors won’t ship your items until they are paid in full, so in the case of a 50% deposit, I would then pay my vendors 50%. They would send me an invoice when the item is ready to ship. I then send you a balance-due invoice. I process your payment, then pay my vendor. Some vendors still send paper invoices and only take checks, so this can add a week or two to the lead time.