How to deal with past due customer invoice: a full guide & payment reminder email template

A past due invoice is a source of aggravation for many small business owner. More or less than a 25% of small businesses say that in an average businesses take around one month to pay each invoice. By More than 1/2 small business owners, late client invoice payments are the root of their business cash flow troubles, according to QuickBooks. This tutorial offers payment reminder email templates to assist you design professional, courteous payment reminders.

What is a past-due invoice?

A past-due invoice is one that has not been paid by the agreed-upon due date in the customer invoice payment conditions. Late payments put your firm at danger; after all, you can’t pay your suppliers’ bills if your customers don’t pay theirs. The most essential thing to remember when handling overdue payments is to keep calm and cheerful, even if you have to work a bit harder to get payment. If a client fails to pay an overdue invoice in the specified time, you can take the following measures.

How to deal with past-due invoices

1. Set on a pre-specified invoice payment method up-front

Start the conversation about invoice payments right after making relations with the customer. Don’t be too hard on yourself if it’s late in the payment period. There’ll always be another opportunity.

However, if you’ve discovered these two precise logistics of what the customer wants and requires in the invoice, it may be easier to be paid:

Who will get the invoice: On occasion the client, sometimes the accounting department of the company, and sometimes both. Assure you’re familiar with the process to ensure a smoother, faster payment.

How customers prefer to pay: Giving your consumers more payment alternatives, for instance, credit card, eCheck, or direct ACH bank transfer, guarantees that there are no delays caused by something that might be avoided.

It’s a regular occurrence: a customer becomes used to making payments for practically everything in one method. If they use their credit card for everything and you ask for a check, they might never find the time to locate their checkbook and mail the check.

If a customer hasn’t paid in the specified time, just asking, “Would you like to pay in another method?” maybe it will ensure that you’re paid on time in the future.

2. Clearly specify in the invoice what the customer is paying for

Customers are likely to pay on time if the invoice spells out exactly for what products they’re paying for. Hence you should double-check that you’ve provided all of the necessary information a customer requires. This might involve the following:
  • Time for consultation
  • Time spent on certain jobs in hours
  • Time in research
  • Specific project numbers
  • Materials costs
If you did not cataloging your items or services, making a catalogue of products and services is a valuable activity that may help you with anything from marketing to invoicing in the future. You must check that your payment conditions and due date are prominently displayed in your invoice. When an invoice is genuinely “late,” it will go against your words against theirs without defined payment terms. You might be allured to write “instant payment,” but this may confuse certain customers. Setting a deadline provides them a specific date to meet. “Net 30” is the most typical payment term, which signifies that the receiver must pay their invoice within 30 days of the receiving date. Remind consumers of their unpaid bills in a proactive manner. Sending a reminder email that their payment is due in next few days provide them advance notice and may help you obtain the money sooner.

3. Establish a process for following up on past due invoices

Having “the talk” about past due payments may be stressful, especially when your ability to pay your own obligations on time is dependent on the financial flow that this late invoice represents.

Having a procedure for following up on late payments, like everything else we’ve discussed, may help you stay calm and get back to work.

Accounting software makes it easy to track down late payments since, unlike manual systems like Word or Excel, it allows you to filter invoices by customer name or due date, as well as set up automatic invoice reminders for past due payments.

How to write a payment reminder letter.

Include the following information in your past-due invoice letter:

  • An invoice number is a unique number.
  • The invoice’s date of issuance
  • The due date for the invoice
  • The payment terms for the transaction
  • The total amount owing, including any late fines
  • Detailed payment instructions
  • Your contact details and phone number

This will guarantee that your consumer has all of the necessary information to settle the past-due invoice.

QuickBooks allows you to construct automated messages that you may send to your clients to make sending these courteous reminders easier. Starting with a payment reminder template will help you compose a professional and courteous payment reminder email if you aren’t automating reminders using QuickBooks.

Past due invoice email templates.

Day 1: The payment due date

Check to discover if they got the bill if you haven’t received payment before the due date. You can determine if your client has read the invoice using QuickBooks, which might help you figure out if they just missed the email.

Send a courteous email reminder in either case, suggesting that the invoice may have been lost in the shuffle. That may be sufficient to remind them to send it. Alternatively, they may reply, “The check’s in the mail,” in which case you know the payment is on its way.

Here are some invoice reminder email templates you may use in your first email reminder to your customers or clients for your convenience. Remember to tailor them to your company’s needs and to the tone of your interactions with customers. These are intended to serve as starter guidelines.

Email template for payment reminders

[Your Company Name]: [Subject Line] Follow up on [Product/Service] Invoice XX

Body:

Hello there, [Customer’s Name].

I hope everything is ok with you. This email serves as a pleasant reminder that your payment on invoice #XXXXX, received on [sent date], is due on [due date].

We wanted to check if you’ve had a chance to review the invoice and confirm that everything is in order and that payment will be received by [due date]. The invoice is included for your inspection.

If you have any questions or issues, please contact me.

Thank you very much.

[Your Full Name]

[Your Business Name]

Email template for invoice due date.

[Your Company Name]: [Subject Line] Today is the due date for invoice #XXXXX for [Product/Service].

Body:

Hello there, [Customer’s Name].

I hope you are well today when you receive this email.

This email is to remind you that payment on invoice #XX

We have not yet received payment on this invoice and would appreciate it if you could confirm a payment date. A late fee will be levied if payment is not received by [late fee penalty date].

We’d like to prevent a late charge, so please let us know if you have any queries regarding this invoice, and we’ll be pleased to answer them.

Thank you very much.

[Your Full Name]

[Your Business Name]

Day 15: Two weeks late

You can become concerned when your payment is two weeks late.

If you haven’t heard from them after your first reminder, give them a call to ensure they got the invoice and ask if they have any questions. They may fail to advise you that they want certain details from you, such as a PO number, for their own system. It’s also possible that your invoice was unnoticed because one of your customer’s workers is on vacation. If your invoice hasn’t been paid, there’s nearly always a valid explanation, so don’t be afraid to inquire.

Here’s an email template for past due invoices that you can easily copy, paste, alter, and send to your customer:

Day 30: One month late

It may feel unpleasant to make a payment this late, but that does not mean you should be. Maintain your composure and professionalism when you follow up.

If you’ve already spoken with the customer, resubmit the invoice, along with any new costs, and include a note about your chat and any specific plans they’ve specified for payment. Send it by snail mail in addition to email, as this is more likely to grab their attention.

You can even start charging late fees if you disclosed it to your new client during onboarding.

Adding an unexpected late charge to a customer’s bill may result in more resentment than it’s worth. It’s completely OK, though, to express your terms for late payments up front and then list them on the following bill.

You might wish to increase your perseverance at this time. Make it obvious that you expect to be compensated, and double-check that you’re speaking with the appropriate individual. If you’re dealing with the accounting department, it could be time to enlist the help of your client, who has a vested interest in ensuring that you’re paid on time so that the job can continue.

This is because now is the best moment to stop all present and future efforts. Inform your customer through email that you will be unable to continue working on existing projects until the invoices are paid in full.

Here’s an email template for a 30-day past due invoice that you can easily copy, paste, change, and send to your customer:

Email with a 30-day past-due invoice 

Subject line: [Your Company Name]: The [Product/Service] invoice #XXXXX is 30 days past due.

Body:

Hello there, [Customer’s Name].

This email is to notify you that your invoice is now 30 days overdue, and I would appreciate it if you could respond right away.

According to our records, payment for invoice #XXXXX in the amount of [invoice amount], which was due on [due date], has not yet been received.

[If relevant, optional] Your invoice has been levied a late fee of [amount] since it is now past due.

The outstanding invoice amount is [invoice amount + late fees, if any] and is past due for [number of days]. A copy of the invoice is attached. You may pay online or by other means here: [link to online payment or other payment options].

Please let me know how your payment is progressing.

Please discard this notification if your money has already been submitted. Please contact me at [contact number] if you have any questions or issues, or if you’d like to explore payment plan alternatives.

I appreciate you taking care of this as soon as possible so that we can resolve this issue.

Thank you very much.

[Your Full Name]

[Your Business Name]

Day 60: Two months late

If 60 days is a long time for you to invoice, you might want to consider:

Using a bill factoring company

The bill will be sent to a collection agency.

Delete the invoice as a bad debt and move on.

Here’s an email template for a 60-day past due invoice that you can easily copy, paste, alter, and send to your customer:

60-day past due invoice email

[Your Company Name]: [Subject Line] Please provide payment for invoice #XXXXX for [Product/Service] as soon as possible.

Body:

Hello there, [Customer’s Name].

You must pay quick attention to this critical message. I’ve contacted you on multiple occasions about a now 60-day past-due payment.

I have not yet received your payment for the amount of [amount], which was due on [due date], on the attached invoice #XXXXX. Please be advised that if you pay more than [number of days] over the due date, you may be charged additional [late fees or interest] under my payment terms.

Your account will be forwarded to a collections agency if your payment is not received by [final date]. It is possible to avoid this by making your payment as soon as feasible.

Please contact me at [contact number] if you have any questions or problems regarding this payment. I’m hoping we can resolve this as soon as feasible.

Warm regards,

[Your Full Name]

[Your Business Name]

Takeaways: Friendly reminders can help you get paid

Although no business owner likes to deal with delinquent bills, most will face late payments at some point. You’ll be able to focus more on performing the job and expanding your business, rather than on the administrative burden of being paid if you put up procedures and practices ahead of time that give clarity around your accounts receivable and keeps you safe.

Of fact, the timetable detailed in this tutorial is the worst-case scenario; in most cases, all you’ll need to do is send a simple follow-up reminder email, perhaps include additional payment alternatives, and your cash will be on its way.

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