Help! What do I charge? Client is going in "another direction"

keith204

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I do web design along with photography. I began a web project for a law firm, and estimated a total of $1100 for the final project. I created an initial design for them, as a sample, for an idea, and they came back saying "we are going to look into other options, please put this project on hold for now...what do we owe you so far?"

It sounds like I am out of the job, but they are being nice and wanting to pay me. I've worked about 10 hours so far, so at $30/hour that's $300. But, that seems like a lot to charge for a website they might not end up using.

Any ideas? Do I charge $300? Do I charge nothing? I did spend a lot of time on this, and IMO my design is decent and according to specs, and also they are willing to pay for the time...but the estimate of $1100 was for the entire project, and I didn't specify an hourly cost.

What should I do??
 

Rachelsne

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I would charge what you have done so far, Its only fair, the worst thing they can do is say that sounds too much, but with your reasoning of $10 an hour I think it sounds reasonable
 

kundalini

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This should have been agreed upon prior to commencing the work. They are lawyers and expect a non-refundable retainer fee upfront. I would charge half of the agreed final cost of the project, then negotiate down to an acceptable payment for both of you. My 2¢.
 
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astrostu

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I'd say charge what you want to charge and if they want to know why it's expensive explain that a lot of the work goes into the initial design.
 

nicfargo

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Dude, don't feel bad for charging $30 an hour for a law firm...they charge like $300 an hour. Believe me, you stating $1100 for the final project is not their problem. They are either questioning online presance, or they just didn't really like your design. If they didn't like your design they should have just asked "what else you got?" or "we were looking more for this and that".
 

~Stella~

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They are lawyers and expect a non-refundable retainer fee upfront.
Actually, this is not true - most retainers are refundable for work not done.

Nonetheless, charge them a reasonable fee, put it in an invoice that describes the work done and time used and I doubt they will have any hesitation in paying it.
 

OverlordXenu

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Half.

Although, before you even start a project, you should have stuff like that in black and white.
 

dipstick

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$30 an hour is not a lot for web design. If $1100 is what you quoted, I guess you had an idea of how much time you would spend on the project. Then simply charge the percentage of work you put into it so far. If that is 10 hours @ $10, $300 then thats what you need to charge.

Being that they asked you how much they owe you so far, they dont expect it to be free, and $300 is not a lot of money in this context.
 

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