In this week’s question time video I talk about what to do when a client changes their mind during a project, how design contracts can come to the rescue as a freelancer and where you can go to find yourself a design contract template online.

This week’s questions

Tricia Kennedy
When you are near completion on a project and the client sends you a link to an ‘out-of-the-box’ design which they ‘love’ and they hint at not liking the current design (which they said yes to) what do you do?

Links from the video

Contract Killer
Web Design Contract Template
Don’t Get Screwed Over

Writing the Perfect Web Design Contract
What to Include in Your Design Contracts

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If you have a question you would like to submit for an upcoming episode add it to the comments below, or send it to me on my Formspring account.

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  1. I personally have some of my terms listed on my site up front. They are almost identical to what I put in my contracts as well. Learning from experience, being burned by a few people who’ve asked for work, only to say the love it, then not return my messages for 3 weeks to come back and say, we want to start over, but we’re not going to pay you for your work so far, I fired the client. I now make sure no work is ever done without contracts, unless they are people whom I know personally, or make clear to them the terms and if they don’t pay up, legal action will be taken. If its sent in an email but not signed, you can sometimes use the emails as contractual agreements if they give you the go ahead with the work, and you’ve forgotten to get a singed agreement, some documents will hold up in court if you can prove in said documents the what the client asked for and agreed to.

    So with respect to contracts, always use them, but if burned in the past, so long as you have something in print from the client stating what they wanted and shows your conversations and agreements verbally, or in this case email, they can be used as legal binding agreements in some parts of the world, and I would encourage you to use them if a client tries to skip on payment for a job well done. See my services section of my own site, to get an idea of my types of stipulations and feel free to copy and use it in your own contract terms. Such as point 3 on my site and I will post here, which is also in my contracts:

    “If at any point you (the client) decide to change the direction of the project, or start over and take it in a different direction, the current contract will be closed, payment due upon termination, and a new contract agreement be made for any new work to be rendered.”

  2. I couldn’t follow along with the video due to my deafness (it would be nice to have a transcript or a written article to accompany the video), but I would remind them they okayed the design, and then bill them for the work done so far before submitting a new quote for the change in direction.

  3. This is very good advice. Most clients that you have a relationship with would not pull these tactics. But for new clients I guess it’s better to be safe than sorry…

  4. Nice post! Having a design looked at and immediately disproved can be crushing. Providing the best design the first time around is often rare. However, providing a design the client likes and can see the potential in is obtainable.

  5. I do not know if it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else experiencing issues with your site. It looks like some of the text on your posts are running off the screen. Can someone else please comment and let me know if this is happening to them too? This may be a issue with my browser because I’ve had this happen previously.

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