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FT painter/FT dad
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1,254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Have a customer who I did some work for, not a huge job. Wrote up 2 different proposals for the 2 separate projects done at different times. The total for everything came to $330.00. Now, I know that's not a ton of money, but it's mine and honestly I'm insulted that it has gone this long. The reason is quite simple-I painted, she told me she was broke. She told me Friday. I called Friday. She told me Wednesday. I called Wednesday. She told me Friday. I called Friday...

....answering machine....this is when I almost lost it, but tried to keep it somewhat cool. I left a message saying that I needed my money now, that I had waited long enough, and that if she did not pay me soon I would have to take her to court. That was this past Friday.

I did the work May 12th.

A. Was I wrong for telling her I'd take her to court? Wifey says that was to harsh and now she definitely won't pay.
B. Had wifey get the form for small claims, I'm in the middle of filling it out. What do I do from this point? You think I should give her more time or send the form right away?

I'm sure some of you guys have been through this. Again, I know it's not a huge amount, but I'm in the middle of some big things and need all the funds I can get and then some. Plus, this is a first and I'm super insulted.

Thanks for listening
 

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Rock On
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2,451 Posts
I have an intent to lien letter
I'll shoot it to you if you want, you can fill in the appropriate info

It doesn't really matter if your state requires them, the hope is that the "Intent..." letter shakes loose a few bucks

If you do end up filing a lien, and your state does require it, you're covered
There's time limits and waiting periods involved, so do not hesitate to send out this letter just in case you want to proceed
 

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FT painter/FT dad
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1,254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update

Well, she called me today, finally. She apologized and swore that she'd pay me asap, that she has really been struggling lately. I told her even $100 payments are fine, but I need her to show some initiative. She agreed and said she will try to pay me in full by the end of this week.

So the court papers wait on the desk.

Yes, I said court. Why? My wife informed me that I can't do the lien notice since she is not the owner of the house where I did the work.

This week will tell-at least she called...that was bugging me the most

Thanks for the tips and thanks John for the form this morning, at least I have it now if I need it
 

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Paint to ride!
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230 Posts
Well, she called me today, finally. She apologized and swore that she'd pay me asap, that she has really been struggling lately. I told her even $100 payments are fine, but I need her to show some initiative. She agreed and said she will try to pay me in full by the end of this week.

So the court papers wait on the desk.

Yes, I said court. Why? My wife informed me that I can't do the lien notice since she is not the owner of the house where I did the work.

This week will tell-at least she called...that was bugging me the most

Thanks for the tips and thanks John for the form this morning, at least I have it now if I need it
I learned over the years to be patient with clients like that, I give them a month to pay me even if they said they would pay in a few says, they are always much longer than that to get you paid, it is just human nature, or broke and needs the time. Remember flys and honey storie it works.;)
 

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Systems Fanatic
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1,390 Posts
Threatening someone with court changes the relationship. Granted it usually isn't very good by the time it gets to that, but such a threat will really get someone's dander up.

I've had a few dead beat customers over the years. Usually we start with phone calls, and if that doesn't work (taking credit cards helps collect money), I'll send a letter with a finance charge attached. Funny, but they don't mind ignoring me while holding hundreds of my dollars, but when I hit them with a $10 late fee they suddenly find my phone number.

Brian Phillips
 

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FT painter/FT dad
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1,254 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If she isn't the owner of the house, you should have had the actual owner sign the contract.
good point...I can see why too

I guess I had to experience this to learn a few things

it sucks because it was supposed to be one of those easy in easy out jobs, no hassle...I mean I painted a total of 7 hours
 

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Rock On
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2,451 Posts
Cool, well I hope she pays up


My wife informed me that I can't do the lien notice since she is not the owner of the house where I did the work....
Surprisingly enough, you can (depending on which state)
That form I sent you was for a mechanics lien
It doesn't matter who signed the contract, or who owns the house
She was acting as agent for the house

The deadbeat renter may not give much care if there is a lien on the house, but when the actual owner finds out, they can exert a little pressure on them

I found out about it when I contracted with the daughter on her elderly (and not all together there) mother's home, then daughter refused to pay
I though I was pooned

I could still file the lien, and even if the daughter kept the info from her mom and still tried to stiff me, when the time came to sell or mom passed and daughter was to inherit the property, as long as I kept the lien up the property could not pass hands


If she isn't the owner of the house, you should have had the actual owner sign the contract.
Since then, this is SOP for me
 

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Epoxy Dude
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566 Posts
I've got to tell you guys... I'm sick and tired of my fellow humans not keeping their word (with or without a contract).

Why in the WORLD do you believe this human who has demonstrated countless times that she is a LIAR!!! LIAR!!! LIAR!!! :no:

Don't delay... File the papers! :thumbup:
 
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