I'd really appreciate your advice on an ongoing project.
I presented my client with a proposal and design samples which he approved, and he paid in full instead of the 50% upfront deposit as I'd given him a generous discount. He was then slow in furnishing me with some of the content, but once we did, he expected the website to be finished immediately which was not possible. Because he needed it done urgently, we agreed to try to get it done about 10 working days after the content was provided, but the developer who was helping me let me down.
The next week, I completed the website myself and uploaded it to the server on a Friday afternoon. He then calls and texts me on following Sunday while I'm at church to say it's not online (there was probably a problem with his browser). The next morning, I received an email from him demanding a full refund within two days because he couldn't see the website (even though it was live, and I tested it on multiple browsers, a different computer and my phone), and he called me shouting at me because he couldn't access it. Finally when he was able to access it, he was unhappy with a certain detail regarding the slideshow which I began fixing and which was done the next day. He then referred me to another website and said he wanted it to look similar but not identical to it in terms of the layout. He also now wanted to add more features which were not in the original design.
I got a designer to work on a new design which I sent to him for review, which if approved would be completed by 15 October, and he approved it last Thursday. He then called me yesterday to say that he wanted to change the design - he only approved it out of impatience. He now wants the website to be more similar to the other website he referred me to and he wants it done before the 15th! Then, he says to me that other people have done websites for him in three days - website's he's complained to me about for lacking dimension because they were just premium themes, whereas we'd designed and coded from scratch.
I'm thinking of finishing the website but refunding him in full (or at least the refundable 50%) less domain registration and other non-refundable amounts, just to avoid further escalation of this matter and having him call me next week and say he wants to change it again.
These are the applicable terms and conditions as laid out in the agreement:
- Total amount due for this project is Amount A.
- Client shall pay Consultant a deposit of Amount B (50% of total amount due for project) in advance before any work commences on the Project.
- The balance is due within 7 working days of completion of project.
- Deposit is non-refundable.
- Should client opt to host elsewhere, applicable transferral fee of Amount C will apply.
- Estimated project completion time frame is 14 to 30 days from the date Client furnishes Consultant with Brief and all other required media and data, provided that Client has made payment to secure the project.
- Consultant will make every effort to meet agreed upon due dates. The Client should be aware that failure to submit required information or materials, or last minute changes and excessive changes may cause subsequent delays. Client delays could result in significant delays in delivery of finished work.
- Major changes in client input or direction or brief will be charged at normal rates.
- Any work the Client wishes Consultant to create, which is not specified in the attached Proposal will be considered an additional service.
- Client agrees to pay Consultant for any additional expenses or additional services not included in the attached quotation and proposal if requested by the Client.
- Web design credit in the name of the Consultant, and link to Consultant’s website shall be placed on the footer of the final Website.
- Either party may terminate this Agreement by giving 7 days written notice to the other of such termination.
- In the event that Work is postponed or terminated at the request of the Client, Consultant shall have the right to bill pro rata at full rates for work completed through the date of that request, while reserving all rights under this Agreement.
- If additional payment is due, this shall be payable within seven days of the Client's written notification to stop work. In the event of termination, the Client shall also pay any expenses incurred by Consultant and the Consultant shall own all rights to the Work.