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A retainer fee is a fixed fee that the client agrees to pay based on their anticipated need for your services, and the anticipated volume of work. The fixed fee is either a single advance payment, a recurring monthly fee, or an annual fee.
Here are a few tips for winning a retainer contract and ensuring it works for both you and your client. Target your Most Important Clients. Position Yourself as Invaluable. Consider Dropping your Rate. Dont Skip the Proposal Part. Shoot for a Retainer thats Time-Bound. Be Clear About the Work you Do Under the Retainer.
A retainer is by default non-refundable and is not returned. Instead, it gets applied to the total. Think of a security deposit for an apartment or a cleaning deposit for an event venue rental (separate from the actual fee for the event cost itself). These are fees that are separate from the total.
Most frequently, the client agrees to a security or an advanced payment retainer where payment for services is drawn from the monies held in trust. Heres the kickeronly the true retainer is non-refundable. Unearned funds from either a security or advanced payment retainer must be refunded at the end of the work.
A good rule of thumb is to charge at least $3,000 per month for your retained clients because this way youll only need 3 clients to sign retainer agreements in order to earn a six-figure income. Your goal should be to develop high-income skills so that each client is paying a $10,000 per month retainer fee.
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What Is a Retainer Fee? A retainer fee is an amount of money paid upfront to secure the services of a consultant, freelancer, lawyer, or other professional. A retainer fee is most commonly paid to individual third parties that have been engaged by the payer to perform a specific action on their behalf.
There is the advanced fee retainer, which is made up of fees and costs paid in advance. There is the security deposit retainer, which is money held in security to be used in the event the client fails to pay an invoice or cost.
The amount serves as a guarantee by the client to pay the attorney upon completion of the agreed work. The attorney cannot claim the retainer fee until he has completed the work and invoiced the client. Any remaining retainer fee after paying the hourly attorney fees should be returned to the client.
Operationally, the key difference between fees paid in advance and a true retainer is that a true retainer can be immediately put into a law firms operating account.
Setting Retainer Rates Consultants who charge retainer fees normally base their fees on an hourly rate times the number of hours of work they will give a client. For instance, a consultant who charges ​$50​ an hour and expects to give a client 40 hours of time each month would set a monthly retainer fee at ​$2,000​.

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