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Supplier asks customer to select terms of payment
Thank you for your letter of 3 April, but you do not say whether you wish this transaction to be for cash or on credit.
When we wrote to you on 20 March we explained our willingness to offer easy credit terms to customers who do not wish to pay cash, and also that we allow generous discounts to cash customers.
We may not have made it clear that when placing orders customers should state whether cash or credit terms are required.
Please let me know which you prefer so that we can arrange your account accordingly.
1 Enclosed is our statement for the quarter ended ...
2 We enclose our statement to 31... showing a balance of £...
3 We are sorry it was necessary to return our invoice number ... for correction.
4 We very much regret having to ask for an extension of credit on your January statement.
1 Please let us have your credit note for the amount of this overcharge.
2 Please make the necessary adjustment and we will settle the account immediately.
3 We apologise again for this error and enclose our credit note for the overcharge.
1 We enclose our cheque for £... in payment for goods supplied on ...
2 We enclose our cheque for ... in payment of your invoice number ...
3 We acknowledge with thanks your cheque for £...
4 We thank you for your cheque for £... in part payment of your account.
1. We hope to receive the amount due by the end of this month.
2. We should be obliged if you would send us your cheque immediately.
3. As the amount owing is considerably overdue, we must ask you to send us your cheque by return.
LETTERS REQUESTING PAYMENT
When a customer fails to pay promptly it is always annoying to the supplier, but no suggestion of annoyance must be allowed to creep into the correspondence. It may be better not to write at all and instead call on the customer if possible, or telephone tactfully to persuade at least pan payment to be made on account. In difficult cases it may even be good policy to accept a part payment rather than resort to legal action which would be both expensive and time-consuming.
There may be several good reasons why a customer fails to pay on time, some of them deserving sympathy. There is, however, always the customer who is only too ready to invent excuses and who needs to be watched. Each case must be treated on its merits.
The style and tone of any letters should depend on such factors as the age of the debt, whether later payment is habitual and how important the customer is. However no letter must ever be less than polite and even the final letter threatening legal action must be written 'with regret'.
When there is a need to write explaining difficulties in paying an account by the due date and to ask to defer payment, the following plan is useful: