Before I begin, I know I made some mistakes here and have learned from them.
I was just starting art commissions when I had a problem with my PayPal. Unfortunately, I had agreed to do some work already, so I explained the issue to my client who said it was no problem. They were fine paying once I got everything all settled. I felt bad for the delay and let them have the work early.
I had a lot going on, i.e. moving, so it took me a lot longer than expected to get my PayPal issues sorted out than I expected but I finally got it ironed out.
Me: Hey! I’m just letting you know I got PayPal together so I can accept payment for that commission now.
Client: Oh wow, it’s been a while, haha. I’ll get on that.
I thought everything was good. A week later, no payment. I messaged him again, no reply.
This went on for a few weeks. I kept messaging, he didn’t reply until finally after weeks:
Client: (upset) Look, I know the payment is important to you, it’s just tough getting it to you so long after I was supposed to pay you.
Me: If this moment is difficult for you, I understand that. Do you know when you’ll be able to pay me?
I gave him a month and sent him a message.
Client: It’s hard for me to pay at the moment. Anyway when you buy something it should happen right then, not when I need the money for something else.
Me: You agreed to pay me when my PayPal was back up. If you weren’t comfortable with that you could have said no.
Client: Well it’s your fault for taking so long! I don’t want to pay for something this long after I get it!
Eventually, I realized the issue wasn’t that they were experiencing “hard times,” it’s that they just didn’t WANT to pay me that long after the fact.
I asked the client to take down my art and never got paid. I learned a lot at least.