Discussion: View Thread

1.  Alternative methods of payment

Posted 5 days ago
Clients are increasingly requesting to pay by methods other than check.  While we've accommodated the occasional paypal payment, we have not set up a formal alternative.
Is anyone explicitly accepting credit cards, paypal, bank transfers, (bitcoin!) etc.?
How are you handling the fees associated with these forms of payment?

Scott Rappe AIA, LEED AP
Kuklinski + Rappe Architects
Chicago IL

2.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
I use ACH. Costs a mere $0.50 per transaction. Easy peasy.

Danny Cerezo
c|s design
Los Angeles CA

3.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 3 days ago
I'm familiar with ACH as a way of allowing utility companies to automatically withdraw monthly payment.  In authorize once and they deduct whatever I owe without any further action on my part.

But what does this look like on the client's end?  How does a client make an ACH transfer for my invoice?


Scott Rappe AIA, LEED AP
Kuklinski + Rappe Architects
Chicago IL

4.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
I offer PayPal as an option in my standard agreement with the 3% service fee passed on to the client should they choose that option.  I would estimate about 25% of my clients in the past year have paid using that method.

Michael Dolce AIA
Owner / Architect
Michael P. Dolce, AIA Architect
Forest Hill MD

5.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
Some states do not allow you to charge a service fee for taking a credit card.
Please note our new address:

David Del Vecchio, AIA, NCARB, LEEDap, RCS
2010 AIA New Jersey Architect of the Year

david del vecchio, architect, llc
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4 Alden Street
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t. 908-272-6000
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6.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
I use Square for those clients that want to pay by credit card. I can swipe the card in person, or the client can give me their card information via a telephone call. Square has a transaction fee, basically 2.75% when you swipe the card, and 3.5% if you enter the card information without swiping it. The fee does not vary depending on the card type. Also there is no monthly fee, so if I do not have any credit card payments for several months there is no continuing monthly charge. If you accept credit cards through your bank, the fee structure is quite different, and typically more costly.​ When I signed on with Square they had a very modest transaction dollar limit, but it was easy to get them to not set a transaction limit for my business. I have accepted payments of several thousand dollars via Square. The money is in my account the next morning! I have had no issues using Square.

Neil Johnson AIA
Neil K. Johnson, Architect
Moorestown NJ

7.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
We've set up Square for credit card payments, have accommodated PayPal payments, etc. If we are to incur a fee for these payments, we make sure to be very clear to client that there will be a convenience fee for online payment. Our state does not allow processing fees to be passed on to consumers, so we use the term convenience fee.
If we have a 3% processing fee (Square), I've found we have to markup our invoice about 4% to net our earned fee.
That's been my experience. Have not had a client offer to pay with bitcoin yet, but did notice a fellow designer here in town had a bitcoin button on their website...

Felix Ziga AIA
Principal Architect / Owner
Ziga Architecture Studio, PLLC
San Antonio TX

8.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 4 days ago
We have a Paypal account and accept credit card payments via that. We have a note at the bottom of each invoice that says they're welcome to pay by credit card for a 3% processing fee. That covers the fees for us (and motivates people to pay in cash).

sara martin | open door architecture
1121 Eleanor Street Knoxville, TN 37917 | 865-603-4756

9.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 3 days ago

My payments are almost exclusively made via ACH bank transfer. No more "check is in the mail"!


The process and recording is mostly automated and nearly instantaneous. Credit cards are too expensive to process, and to me seem to be cost prohibitive. If someone needs to use a credit card, it is likely that there is no project funding, so I don't have any plans to ever accept credit.


For the clients that insist on a paper check, mobile deposit works for most of the checks. We also add a small convenience fee for the extra effort to process the transaction, and to incentivize the ACH payment method.


Daniel L Edgell AIA, NCARB




1162 Rolling Oaks Ave

Tarpon Springs, FL 34689

727 308 1773


10.  RE: Alternative methods of payment

Posted 9 hours ago

I'm also curious about how you manage direct ACH transfers.  Is there some vendor you work with to set this up?  I've not heard of it before as something that a small firm can do themselves.


Michael F. Malinowski FAIA