I have owned a couple of businesses in my career. One thing I know for sure is not to mess with people’s money. People get very sensitive when it comes to being paid and getting what is owed to them. Not surprising, I feel the same way. This is a reminder to be diligent with money etiquette. Pay things on time. If there is a problem with the work, discuss it before the project is finished and the payment is due. If there is a reason that payment will be late (and I can’t stress this enough)—don’t go missing. Communicate the issue. People are generally reasonable and will likely respond kindly as long as they know they were not forgotten and payment is forthcoming.
One payment option that I have adopted is to sell pre-paid chunks of time. This eliminates having to chase money down and also takes away the awkward conversations around money. A client can purchase as much time as they like and purchase more time as needed. If your business is not run on a per-hour basis, there are still ways to set up pre-purchase plans and a variety of platforms that can handle this.