I have a question for more experienced freelancers than myself. I am working on a fixed price project. The client estimated the final product to be 20 minutes long. The first milestone (half of the price) was already paid and the second milestone is about to be paid after I finish the product. However, the issue is that the product is now almost double the estimated duration. Should I ask the client for additional payment? I spent much more time on the project than I hoped I would, so I feel I should ask for additional money. On the other hand, I do not want to ruin the relationship between the client and myself. I would appreciate any advice or the right wording on how to approach the client. Thank you! Michaela
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It's really not a good idea to do so. You agreed to the contract, finish it and move on. Also realize there's no such thing as a 20 minute job. Clients never seem to factor in the realities of their projects.
Bite the bullet on this one and learn how to write proposals that cover the issue of scope creep.
Thank you, Virginia. Just to clarify - it's not 20 minutes job - the final PRODUCT was supposed to be 20 minutes of videos - the job takes several hours. The estimate was made by the client and the script was recorded by the client as well, so there was no way to know for me how long it will be. I'm talking about several hours of extra work, not minutes. 😉
I understand. But my statement still stands ... I believe a lot of clients do not have a grasp on how long it takes any of us to do anything.
But again, you agreed to the contract - finish this one up and protect yourself from scope creep by writing better proposals that cover that eventuality.
Thank you, Virginia!
Most of the time clients contact me, so they propose the terms and I just accepted whatever the proposal was based on the little information provided. How do you deal with this situation? You have to accept or decline first before even speaking further with the clients.
I think it's too late to ask for additional payment on this job, having done the work and not given the client a heads up during the process that it was taking more time and effort than anticipated. However, you mention not wanting to ruin the relationship with the client, so that suggests that you may work with this client again. If that's a possibility, I would probably let the client know that because the scope of the project changed, it took much longer than anticipated, and the next time around you would need to lock down the expectations more definitely or allow for additional compensation if the scope of the project changed.
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