All of us depend on client/ customer payments to pay our bills and maintain our standard of living.

Here are 9 Tips to consider so you get the money you are due.

Know your customers – their patterns, issues and ethics. Everyone has a story about the way they conduct business; don’t be surprised by them.

Keep your eyes open and keep track of all clients/ customers’ payments – Do you know who’s paid you when? It’s easy to lose track when you don’t have a system; do your billing on a regular basis.

Contracts and applications – have everyone complete one; it may seem like overkill, but it’s necessary. This way, there can be no ambiguity about who’s to do what when, and you’ll have info. on everyone if you need it later.

When things don’t go well – who pays the lawyers? – Make sure there’s a provision for conflict resolution in the contract.

Check your Checks for valuable information – There’s a lot of useful information on a business check which can come in handy if you have to find someone.

Make copies of everything – You’re thinking I don’t need to; the correspondence is in my computer. OK; if it crashes, or even if it doesn’t, having an accessible hard copy can be very useful.

Review your accounts and go after deadbeats – Don’t let too much time go by with delinquent accounts; it’s much harder to collect after several months have gone by.

Do the math – make sure your invoice numbers are right. You’d be amazed how many of US make simple arithmetic mistakes.

Get help if you need it – Hey, we’re not all good at this stuff; a PT bookkeeper (they can even be virtual) is not that expensive, but they’re still cheaper than not getting that check.