Client Red Flags: How to Spot and Avoid Them

As a freelancer or service provider, working with clients can be a rewarding experience. However, not all clients are created equal, and sometimes, certain behaviors or requests can be a red flag that a project might not be worth pursuing. 🚩 Not sure what they are? No worries!  We've got a list of some common client red flags and how to avoid them.


    1. Unclear or constantly changing project requirements 🚩

One of the biggest client red flags is when the project requirements are unclear or constantly changing. This can lead to scope creep, where the client expects you to do more work than what was originally agreed upon. To avoid this, make sure your contract includes a Scope of Work that clearly outlines the project's requirements and deliverables. Additionally, include details on pricing for any changes outside of the original agreement. If you sense that the client may be difficult to work with in this regard, it's best to address the issue upfront before starting the project.


  1. Rushed deadlines or extreme expectations within a short timeframe 🚩

Another red flag to watch out for is when the client has unrealistic deadlines or expectations. While it's not uncommon for projects to have tight deadlines, it's important to ensure that the timeline is feasible and that you have enough time to complete the work. If the client's expectations are unreasonable, it's important to communicate your concerns and set realistic deadlines. Remember, their lack of planning is not your emergency!


  1. The client tries to haggle when it comes to your pricing or rates 🚩

Clients who try to negotiate your pricing or rates may be a sign that they will have payment issues down the line. It's important to establish clear payment terms upfront and stick to them. If the client tries to haggle, it's important to be firm but professional and explain your pricing structure. Additionally, we recommend getting a deposit, especially for flat rate projects, before starting work.


  1. The client doesn’t want to or is hesitant about signing a contract 🚩

Finally, if a client doesn't want to sign a contract, this should be a major red flag. A contract is essential to protect both you and your client, and without one, there is no legal agreement in place. Whether you're working with a stranger, family member, or friend, it's important to have a signed contract in place to protect yourself and your work.


In conclusion, client red flags can be easy to spot if you know what to look for. By being aware of these warning signs and addressing them upfront, you can avoid potential headaches down the line and build positive relationships with clients who respect your time, expertise, and boundaries.

We're wishing you the best and hope you're buying them a Great Client Candle as a gift in the end!

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