It’s a new era for getting paid: no longer are you stuck waiting for a check in the mail after completing a job. With all the options available to general contractors, you can get paid instantly upon finishing the job — assuming it’s written into your contract. Expanding the number of ways you take payments can make it quicker and easier for clients to get you your hard-earned cash, on time and without hassle.
Paypal is one of the more well-known payment options among both contractors and the general public. Your account is hooked up to your bank account or debit card, and payments are transferred online. You can work up an invoice through the website to send to your client, detailing what charges are for which work, and clients can pay through their account. PayPal also offers a mobile card reader, allowing you to swipe a debit or credit card on the spot.
If you’ve got access to a PayPal Business Debit Card, you can withdraw money from your PayPal account immediately, while those who decline to apply for one can transfer the money to their bank, request a check or use the money to make purchases online. To learn more, visit paypal.com
2. Square Reader
The Square Reader is another popular payment option for opening up your ability to take payment via debit or credit card. The hardware plugs directly into your phone and, depending on the model, allows you to take magnetic cards or those with PIN and chip technology. Most models require your mobile device to have a headphone jack, though some of the chip readers offered by Square connect to your phone via wireless Bluetooth technology.
Square is compatible with most iOS and Android devices and doesn’t require a subscription fee: instead, Square will take a percentage of each transaction, depending on the type. Transactions post to your connected bank account within 36 hours of the transaction, assuming you’re collecting payment on a business day. To learn more, visit squareup.com
3. Intuit QuickBooks Payments
If you already use Intuit’s QuickBooks to keep track of your business’s finances, their payments option seems like a natural step to accept debit and credit cards as well as bank transfers. Bank transfers are free while accepting cards nets QuickBooks a fee per transaction. You can also opt to pay a monthly fee to lower the per-transaction cost – but not to $0.
Card payments transfer to your bank account 3-5 business days after completion, while bank transfers can take up to 5 business days, making this option slightly slower than the other mobile card options. Still, the convenience of having the software automatically match payments to any invoices generated through the QuickBooks software may be worth it. For more information, visit quickbooks.intuit.com/payments
New Payment Options for Contractors
While these three payment options aren’t the only ones available – other big name players in the mobile and online payment game include Venmo, Stripe, Amazon Payments and Google Wallet –they’re some of the most long-standing and trusted mobile payment options with the largest customer bases and support networks.
To find a new payment option that works for your business, take a hard look at your needs, how much you anticipate accepting per month in payments through your new provider and how much you’re willing to pay for the convenience. There’s something for every contractor.