Additional Fees May Apply

Once you have a few projects under your belt, you will begin to realize that you should be charging additional fees in certain situations. From bounced check fees, rush work fee, what the rate will be for additional work outside of the agreed up scope and thousands more.

To date, I am still adding fees for those one-off situations. Of course, you have the chose if you will ultimately charge for whatever situation you are in, but being transparent about what additional fees may apply, it helps avoid that awkward conversation with your client & the assumption that they can add on more work without having to pay.

I was beginning to feel like I had to do a massive overhaul on the contract I use each time I had a new client to ensure I was including fees for everything single thing I could think of. Thankfully I realized there was an easier way to handle this without rewriting my contract every few days. I took this out of the banking playbook and created a miscellaneous fee schedule that I attach to my Welcome Packet -- you can also add it to the end of your contract, in your clients portal, or wherever else you see fit.

As time goes you'll add more fees to the list, or take away fees that don't make sense any longer. The best part of this is that when you have to charge an additional fee for something it doesn't come out of the left field and possibly upset your client. It's clear right from day 1, you can always refer back to the fee schedule and remind them they were provided that information on day 1, etc...

Updating Urban Consulting's website

Now, what standard fees should you include? Let's take a look:

Returned Item Fees/NSF Fees

These are the official terms for a bounced check/payment. Feel free to use those terms or bounced check fee. Depending on where you bank this fee can be a pretty penny. Wells Fargo charges $34 and I've seen small credit unions charge $2 and everywhere in-between. The fee you need to charge for this is the exact fee your bank charges you. There is no law saying that you can't charge more, but I wouldn't.

Late Fees

Charge late fees!!!! It's one thing if a client is late 1-3 days, but for the most thing, anything more needs to have a late fee. Some states regulate how much of a fee you can charge, so be sure to do your research first. Some charge a percent of the total bill (3% - 5%, etc) and some charge a flat fee. I charge $50 on the 6th calendar day the payment is late and another $50 the 16th calendar day. I say calendar day simply because a client tried to argue that they shouldn't pay b/c it didn't specify business or calendar day and they technically were not late if I went off the business day. The late fee should not be outrageous, but it needs to show that you are serious about on-time payments.

Additional Edits

Based on the work you do and the edits you allow, at some point, you will need to charge for the extra work. A client shouldn't be able to request 100 different edits with eventually having to pay extra. This doesn't apply in my line of work, but I do have this on my fee schedule at my hourly rate.

Rush Work

This should be treated the same as above. It may be hard to define what qualifies as rush work so I don't recommend elaborating on that. (Ex. 2-hour turnaround) If you can, go ahead and list it.

Conference Call if Payment is Delinquent

Yup. I charge a fee for this. First, depending on how late they are you need to stop working. If the call is discussing payments, obvs don't charge, but I typically will charge my hourly rate which will be required to be paid in full before I take the call. I know some charge $20 in this situation up to their hourly rate. Even though you may list your hourly rate on your fee schedule, you can give discounts! It's your choice!


All of my clients are virtual so for me, this applies if they have no-showed on a call a certain amount of times. If it's excessive you obvs need to have a firm talk with them, but I break mine down into tiers 1st call I'll give you grace, the 2nd call I will charge $40 and 3rd call I'll charge $70 which again is required to be prepaid.

Now, these are the bare minimum, basic fees you need to have on your fee schedule to start with. There are no hard and fast rules on what you need to include, it's YOUR fee schedule. Time is money, especially in the freelance/entrepreneur world - if we're not working, we're not making money. So, if a client no-shows on you 7 times, you're losing money when you could be finding more clients or doing work that is paying you.

Do you already have a fee schedule in place? How has it worked for you? Do you think I'm missing a standard fee? Let me know!

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