Dealing with non-payment

I am doing some work on a commercial unit heater tomorrow. I just learned the owner has had some financial difficulties of late. Without going into detail, a red flag has gone up regarding getting paid for my work tomorrow. I special ordered parts that are non-returnable, so if I don't do the work, I'm stuck with $300 in parts that I'll probably never use. I'm sitting here wondering what I could do to this unit heater that would allow me to cause it to shut down ,IN A SAFE MANNER, OF COURSE, if I don't get paid in a couple of weeks, short of breaking into the place one night and removing the parts. Any ideas? Anybody know of a 2-week timer? :-)
--
Respectfully, Bob

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On Wed, 21 Mar 2007 20:21:06 GMT, "Bob_Loblaw"

Unfortunately you/we cant shut off their furnace or A/C like the gas, electric, phone or cable utilities can. Your best bet is to head this off at the start. Get payment upon completion and make sure they know all that BEFORE you show up. Do this on their initial call. On special order stuff get a deposit first. Make payment to you easy for them. Let them know you accept Visa and Mastercard (if you do). Call them/him this evening or first thing in the morning, let them know when they can expect you, how much the repair will be and how will they be paying today........cash, check or credit. Asking for your money should not be a last thought. Bubba
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The longer version of the story is I've done work for the son before ,who's business went belly-up. He was a long time paying me , but I finally got my money. His dad owns several buildings that he rents out, units that I will most likely get to look after if all goes well. I don't want to get hard-nosed on a payment issue and lose future business, but when I told him he had to pay on completion, he said his business partner is away on holidays and he needs 2 signatures on the cheque. I did some prep work for him 3 weeks ago and still haven't gotten paid, but it does tie into the job I'm doing tomorrow, so he might be planning to pay all in one shot. I just have a bad feeling about this, but worst case scenario ,I lose $350 in parts.

That's a good idea. I will from now on.

I do, and he said he only has a personal Visa, and doesn't want to use it for business. Like I said, I don't want to push the issue and lose business. I used to bill his son and get paid at months end. I guess the dad wants the same deal. I just feel like I'm gonna get burned, so I'd like to figure out some way to ensure a call-back in a couple of weeks. I was thinking of running 2 wire out the roof at the vent cone, in series with "W". Too bad those remote control boxes for fireplaces are so pricey.
--
Respectfully, Bob

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On Wed, 21 Mar 2007 22:53:28 GMT, "Bob_Loblaw"

with. $350 not a huge loss but none the less, a loss is a loss. Im not real big on working for free personally. Revenge is always sweet but thankfully that was way back when. Knowledge is power. Bubba

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What if you don't push the issue and don't get paid. You're out more than $350. Certainly the labor and lost opportunity to work for a paying client is worth something.
On Wed, 21 Mar 2007 22:53:28 GMT, "Bob_Loblaw"

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Get yourself a http://tinyurl.com/2q5f3h relay. Hook the coil up to a 6 volt lantern battery. According to the chart at http://data.energizer.com/ they are about 26 amp hours. The relay I listed has a 55 ohm coil, and draws a little over 100 ma at 6 volts. Given the drop out of the relay is probably something like two volts, that will take between 260 hours and 400 hours to run the bunny down. N/O contacts in series with whatever you think might have the most interesting result, and...... Of course, you could do something interesting with the N/C contacts instead........ make it call for heat when they want cool, or vice versa.... Blower contactor.... Remember, you can probably get nailed for "damaging" their system if you get caught..... Just don't give your name to the "Shack" when you buy the battery, relay, and duct tape.
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Why not give your name... afterall, YOU installed it on their unit... it's not likely that they FORGOT who they just had repair their system.
So that leaves you holding the lose end of a lawsuit.
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sabotage a system. Hey, who uses duct tape for a hack, anyway...
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COD

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Before you go tomorrow, Bob, give the owner a call and verify the time you'll be there. Then ask if he'll be paying cash check or CC. IF they ask to bill say you know he's good for it but you've been stuck recently and had to change your policy.
FWIW, we don't extend credit to anyone. We do give them multiple ways to pay though.
On Wed, 21 Mar 2007 20:21:06 GMT, "Bob_Loblaw"

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On Wed, 21 Mar 2007 20:21:06 GMT, "Bob_Loblaw"

i dont suppose canada has mechanic lien laws, but thats the route I generally go. Registered letter with a Preliminary Notice usually does the trick as well. Last choice is a collection agency.
under no circumstances do you want to sabotage the equipment or remove parts.
As a businessman, you should know special ordered parts are paid for, upfront. For new accounts or service calls, we require the diagnostic fee up front, prior to dispatching a tech. No payment, no response.
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Just finish the job, Bob.
If he burns you then chalk it up--least you'll have lernt who to send to your competitor for next time they call.
== I'll never forget the time I purchased materials upfront for a job to go into a hardwood plywood mill in Salem Or....this was many years ago
Put out like some 3 K in materials for to make us $500 in shop fees....invoice due in 30 days...private contractor engineered the job...I was a sub to him.
Ended up I got screwed....the fucking mill is still making laminated wood paneling for cheap assed trailer homes, last time I heard....and there's some German engineer still alive somewhere in that area whom I'd really like to fucking bash in both of his kneecaps.
Still...live and learn, I spose....
--




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Yep, money down... especially for special order parts or equipment.
The last time I did a favor, I ordered the equipment with no money down. I wanted to get them up and running ASAP. Insurance job... went south and I got stuck with my money wrapped up in equipment, till I found the right place for it.
NEVER again!!
The old saying goes, "the bad ruin it for the good".
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