Once a job or service is completed, a bill must be submitted to request payment. Before starting work, the terms and conditions under which you have undertaken to provide the service should have been agreed upon. The request for payment is therefore simply a formal statement telling the buyer exactly what services you have provided and how you expect them to pay you. The letter should be polite, formal and to the point. It should give the buyer clear instructions on what you expect.
Refer to your original quote and check that all the work agreed has been completed. The quote will detail what work was required and how much would be charged.
Select a sheet of letterhead paper showing your name, address, contact details and any company registration details. This makes you look professional, and allows the buyer to contact you easily if he disputes your request for payment. If you do not have letterhead, make sure you include the details at the top of the page.
Type the word Invoice in bold and underline it so that the recipient is in no doubt as to what he is receiving. Make sure you add the date of the invoice.
Detail exactly what work has been carried out and include specific details. For example:
Preparing and painting second bedroom at 1, The Street with yellow paint. Glossing all woodwork and re fixing curtains and light fittings. Work completed on 23 May. Break the work down as appropriate. Daily, weekly or by job is acceptable. Add a subtotal to the right of each job.
Detail any expenses incurred which the client is expected to pay. For example: 2 litres of blue paint, £9.70; 1 litre white gloss paint, £6.
Add the subtotals together. Total this sum and type it on the letter. If you need to VAT add this as a subtotal. Type the words, "Total amount due." Underline the sum amount.
Give your customer instructions on how to pay. Please make check payable to Joe Bloggs.
State when the payment is due.
State what will happen if invoice is not paid in the time frame specified. If payment is not received by the 15th, interest will be charged at a rate of 7 per cent per month.
Post or hand-deliver your invoice. Double check that it is going to the correct billing address and make sure you have the name of the person who is paying the bill on the envelope.
Keep quotes so that you can refer back if things are disputed. Send your invoice as soon as the work is completed so that if there are any problems you can rectify them quickly.
Tips and warnings
- Keep quotes so that you can refer back if things are disputed.
- Send your invoice as soon as the work is completed so that if there are any problems you can rectify them quickly.