The Collection Advisor

7 Sure Signs You Need a Debt Collection Agency

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Sep 13, 2018 6:55:00 AM

If your business has never used a collection agency before—or even if you have—you may be unsure about when is the right time. 

How bad do things need to be in order to escalate matters and send an account to collections? In general, not very bad at all. In most Canadian provinces and territories, the statue of limitations on debt is a mere two years. What’s more, you deserve to be paid on time, always, so it should NEVER have to get that bad.

Here are seven sure signs it’s time to send a file to collections:
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Topics: Collection agencies, Commercial Collection Agency, Business Strategy

How Overdue Receivables Can Ruin Your Life (And What to Do About It)

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Aug 14, 2018 12:47:17 PM

It’s a fact: business owners have a ton on their mind.

Entrepreneurs are statistically more likely to be worried, stressed or depressed than the general public, a fact that will come as no surprise to most owners. You have to manage partnerships and cope with lost deals, human resource issues, ever-increasing competition, shrinking margins, regulatory issues and a daily barrage of other surprises. You may be tough and smart, but you’re only human.

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Topics: Collection agencies, Business Strategy

New Brunswick Gets it Right on How to Deal With a Collection Agency

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Jul 25, 2018 12:45:15 PM

When it comes to knowing how to deal with a collection agency, many people are unsure.

Sadly, the same applies to some governments. The rules governing debt collection agencies differ by Canadian province, most of which don’t do a fantastic job articulating what a consumer ought to do when a collection agency calls.

This is where New Brunswick is a standout. The province’s Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) posts some helpful information on its website, including this advice (posted here verbatim):

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Topics: Collection agencies, Consumer Debt Collection

5 Reasons Never to Use a Collection Agency (And Why They’re ALL Wrong)

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Jul 23, 2018 2:48:38 PM

Any business that provides credit terms to its customers will face occasional challenges collecting debt. It simply comes with the territory.

Yet not all entrepreneurs are comfortable sending overdue debt to a collection agency—even when experience shows that aging accounts bear an ever-increasing risk of morphing into bad debt writeoffs.

Ironically, the most common reasons business owners and AR Managers give NOT to use a collection agency are based on old misconceptions. Here are 5 reasons to never use a collection agency, all of which are completely wrong.

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Topics: Collection agencies, Business Strategy

Debt Collection Tips for Startups: 4 Steps Entrepreneurs Must Take to Survive

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Jul 9, 2018 7:17:18 AM

Entrepreneurs are some of the bravest people in the world. They strike out on their own and stake their livelihood on a dream in a world of unprecedented competitiveness, knowing full well their chances of failure are exceedingly high.

And when it comes to collecting debt, most startup owners are ill-prepared for what awaits them. Vendors are reluctant to grant credit to startups lacking a history, and customers can take advantage of your inexperience or lack of confidence, paying your bills after higher-priority ones with established partners. It's a double-whammy many entrepreneurs never see coming.

Here are four steps every entrepreneur should take to improve their startup business’s probability of surviving those critical early years:

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Topics: Business Strategy, Collections

Financial Debt Recovery: 3 Reasons Top Banks Use a Collection Agency

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Jun 21, 2018 7:35:28 AM

Most Canadian banks, credit unions and other financial institutions have in-house collections departments as part of their risk management and loss reduction infrastructures. For the most part, these offices are staffed with highly competent financial services debt recovery teams and perform very well at collecting defaults on credit card debt, mortgages, lines of credit, leases, and other banking and financial services lending products.

So then why would these financial institutions need a collection agency, you may wonder. At MetCredit, some of our best, longest-standing client relationships are with banks, credit unions and other financial services providers. 

In fact, we have provided uninterrupted financial debt recovery services to one of Canada’s biggest banks since 1974—our second year in business! 

Here are three great reasons why top banks and other lenders use a collection agency:

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Topics: Insider Tips, Consumer Debt Collection, credit score

The Case Against Patience in Debt Collection

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Jun 5, 2018 3:44:54 PM

Good things come to those who wait. Because patience is a virtue, right?

Balderdash. 

If you’re ice fishing or waiting for broken bones to heal, being patient can indeed be useful. But in managing accounts receivable, demonstrating a willingness to wait can bring results ranging from bad to catastrophic. 

Here are 5 strong reasons why patience is not a business owner’s friend:

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Topics: Insider Debt Collection Tips, Reputation Management

You’re Not the Bank: It’s Time to Stop Financing Other People’s Business

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on May 7, 2018 1:12:14 PM

Do some of your customers take unreasonable time to pay, consistently holding out for 60, 90 days or more?

In most cases, they probably have (or could find) the money to pay much sooner. They ought to—having made the purchase and agreed on your terms in the first place.

The reason for the delay is simple. To be blunt, they’re using you.

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Topics: Collection agencies, Business Strategy

Customers Not Paying? Take These 4 Breakthrough Steps Right Now!

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Apr 9, 2018 10:46:55 AM

Cash flow is oxygen to business. When it gets suppressed, the consequences can be severe—even catastrophic.

That’s why one or two non-paying customers can be enough to keep a business owner awake at night. I’ve seen plenty of organizations fail because of bad debt that could have been collected by following these four breakthrough steps:

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Topics: Insider Debt Collection Tips, Collections

8 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Debt Collection Agency

Posted by Brian Summerfelt on Feb 20, 2018 9:16:12 PM

I’m a huge proponent of research: when I buy a vehicle, when I hire a new employee, implement a new business system or make any important personal or work-related decision, due diligence comes first. Good chance you have a similar philosophy (hey, you’re reading a blog post about vendor screening)!

But what about when you need to hire a debt collection agency? At some point your business will probably come across a client who won’t pay your bill despite continued, even exasperating efforts. Rather than write off the debt, you should be hiring a collection agency to bring it in. (In fact, you should have a collection agency ready to take on any overdue debt, but more on that later...)

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Topics: Commercial Collection Agency, Debt Collection, Reputation Management

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