Do you own a business? Then you can probably name quite a few things you love about being your own boss. But probably also some things you hate … such as defaulters. When one of your debtors doesn’t pay, you have to put a lot of effort into contacting them time and time again and keeping your paperwork up-to-date. Or, you could choose to hire a collection agency! When you decide to do this, there are some things you need to check on the contract before you sign. In this article, we talk about three important things you need to know before signing a contract with a collection agency!
How do you pay the collection agency?
Different agencies work with different kinds of fees. For some, you pay for certain services they offer, others have start-up and monthly costs and there’s also the ‘no cure, no pay’-service. This last one is particularly handy for business owners, because it means that you don’t have to pay if the agency isn’t successful in collecting (Dutch: incasso) your money. Of course this doesn’t happen often and because they want to be paid, they will do their absolute best to collect your money. But in the rare case it’s impossible – you at least don’t have to pay!
Unfortunately, there are also sketchy collection agencies. These often make you pay for all kinds of services you don’t need or prolong the process of collecting your money. Make sure you don’t sign with one of those! Always check the Google reviews of every agency that interests you. You can easily find the agencies in your area by googling ‘debt collection’+ city. If you for instance live in The Netherlands, that could be ‘incassobureau Groningen’. When you’ve found a debt collection agency with good reviews, go talk to them and make sure you’ve read everything on your contract before you sign.
Ask for a short start-up period
When you start working with a collection agency (Dutch: incassobureau), you want everything to go smoothly and fast. After all, you’ve probably spent some time trying to get your debtor to pay yourself. That’s why it’s important to ask the agency when they’ll start with your case. Ideally, that’s as soon as possible after you sign the contract. You don’t want to be put ‘on hold’ for another few months!
Ask about the pay-out
Also not entirely unimportant: ask when they’ll pay you out after they’ve collected the money. Most payment terms are quite ok and you’ll be paid out in the same month, but there are some agencies whose payment terms will have you waiting for months for your money.
We hope you’re able to find a good collection agency and collect your owed money!