A well-crafted bill, or invoice, for your painting job helps ensure you'll get paid on time and gives your business a professional image. It also makes record keeping a breeze.
Choose a software program to make your invoice. Free invoice software is available from web services like Wave Accounting and Invoiceto.me. Alternatively, you can make your invoice in a word processing program like Microsoft Word.
Use an invoice template, like this one from BuckleUp Studios, to get an idea of what your bill should look like.
Whatever service you use, make sure that the word Invoice is prominent at the top of the bill so your customer understands what the document is.
At the top of the invoice, write the name of your painting business, as well as its address, email address, website and phone number. This makes it easy for your customer to contact you if she has questions. If you haven't registered for a DBA or you're a sole proprietor, use your personal name in lieu of a business name.
If you have a logo for your painting business, add the logo above or beside your personal information to make the invoice look more professional.
Below your personal information, write the name of the business or person you're invoicing. If you worked with a specific individual, write "care of" or "℅" and the person's name under the business name.
Below or beside the personal information, create a section for invoice data. Include the invoice date, the payment due date and the invoice number. These details set customer expectations and help you match customer payments with the invoice.
Create a line item describing each painting service you performed for the customer. For example, you could write "exterior paint services," "interior paint services" or "office painting services."
Next to the description, write your painting rate multiplier and the amount of work done. If you charge by the hour, write the number of hours spent painting and your hourly rate. For example, your line item might read, "Exterior paint services, 5 hours at $50 per hour_."_ If you charge by the square foot, indicate the amount of square feet painted and your rate per square foot. If you established a total price at the beginning of the contract, write "flat fee."
On the far right side of each line item, indicate the total amount for each line item. At the bottom of the billing section, sum each line item amount for a grand invoice total.
Adding some extra details to your invoice increases your chances of receiving payments quickly and smoothly. Below the billing section, indicate the payment terms for the invoice. For example, you might write "Net 30," which means that payment is due 30 days from the invoice date. You can also note any charges you assess for late payment.
In the comments section, note the customer payment options. One clear and specific comment might be "Please remit payment by check to the name and address listed above." You can include any special notes to the customer in this section as well. If there's nothing to note, a simple comment like "Thank you for your business" adds an appreciative touch.