I seem to have a difficult time getting the Realtors I shoot for to pay in a timely manner. Some pay right away, some take weeks, others...months. I hear things like "I never got your invoice," "the check has been in my purse for weeks," or "didn't I pay you?"
I still carry a real estate license and have a "box" at the brokerage I worked at for years. A lot of those agents are loyal to me but prefer to just leave a check in my box...when they get around to it. The problem with that is the checks get left in the wrong box, an agent will pick up my mail by mistake and fail to return it to me, or they say they left a check, but never did. No really, it happens! I went to the office yesterday to pick up checks from 4 agents. Only one had actually left a check in my box. One had placed my check in someone else's box, the other two apparently lied to me last week when they said they left payment.
I carry an MLS keypad, and agents love that they don't have to be present for the photo shoots. Invoicing is a necessity. I use Quickbooks for my accounting. I used to send an invoice and an electronic payment request via Paypal through Quickbooks as soon as I posted the tour and emailed their MLS images. No one likes to pay electronically; they have to write those checks! And, they have to leave them in my box so that I have to drive up to the office and get them. Ugh!
After spending weeks chasing a few agents that were eluding payment (agents I no longer shoot for) I decided that's it, no payment - no tour, no images. Instead of releasing the tour and images, I release an invoice and my electronic request for payment. When I receive confirmation that payment has been received (instant) I release the goods. Don't want to pay online? Fine. Come to the shoot and pay me then. Some could care less. Others were miffed about this. Guess what? They're also the same ones who don't pay in timely fashion and they're also the ones who didn't feel when I announced this change that it applied to them.
How does everyone else handle this? I guess my mindset is that I don't want to finance these agents' tours until the house sells. You hired me, I did my job and made your listing look beautiful, now pay me. If you're not going to pay in a timely manner then everyone pays before they get the product.
Am I off base here?