'What is the price or commission rate for collecting outstanding debts?’ is one of the most commonly asked questions when considering to instruct a debt collection agency.
Many debt collection agencies fail to address this issue because they don’t want other debt collection agencies to know what their commission rate is, or they don’t want to scare off potential clients if they think they are too expensive.
Ultimately, if you don’t address the issue then it may come across as if you have something to hide and therefore lose trust and credibility. As you will see from our Company Values, Transparency is key at Athena Collections.
We've highlighted the key points below but please continue reading to find out the full story....
So, just to be upfront and to clarify...
No Collection, No Commission
No Contracts to Sign
No Upfront Payments * (see below)
No Monthly or Annual fees
Commission Rate Agreed Upfront
Commission Rates From 5% (Lowest Industry Standards)
No Additional Costs Unless Approved By You
The fact is, you get what you pay for and that doesn’t always mean a good quality service so always do your own due diligence before instructing any debt collection agency. We always recommend looking at what other people say about the debt collection agency you intend to instruct. As the saying goes, ‘Pay peanuts, get monkeys’. You can see our independent reviews here.
We are now going to address the elephant in the room with our explanation. In the debt collection industry, it is very difficult to have a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
Be mindful of any company that offers a flat commission rate across the board. This shows lack of awareness but also insinuates that you are going to get the same level of service whether your debt is £1,000 or £100,000! Surely you want a debt collection agency acting on your behalf to be incentivised to collect the debt? This also begs the question whether you are getting good value for fair exchange. For instance, let’s assume that the commission rate was 10% and you get the same level of service for the two debt examples above. Would you be happy to pay £100 and £10,000 for the same service?
Some debt collection agencies ask for an upfront fee, an annual or monthly subscription, administration charge, onboarding fee or however else they dress up a cost for doing nothing. Our recommendation would be to avoid any such debt collection company on the basis that once they have had your money in advance, there is very little incentive for them to try and get your debt collected. Of course, they will go through the motions to evidence that some of effort has been made otherwise they would, in essence, be committing fraud i.e. taking money from customers without providing any service.
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*You will see from our FAQ’s that our minimum threshold is £1,000.00. If we agree to take on a debt less than £1,000.00 then we will charge a one-off handling fee in addition to our commission. This is to cover the administrative costs in setting up the case, conducting client due diligence etc; the commission alone is unlikely to cover these costs even IF the debt is collected.
Some debt collection agencies will charge their full commission even if only part of the debt is recovered whereas we will only charge the agreed commission rate on monies recovered.
Every case is unique with its own merit. Any reputable debt collection agency, in our opinion should tailor its commission structure to take these factors into account.
At Athena Collections, we like to be open and honest about our commission rates. As mentioned above, it is very difficult to have a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
The commission rate Athena Collections offer to our clients will depend on a number of different factors, i.e. age, size, volume and type of debt. Typically, our commission rates vary from as little as 5%, lowest in industry standards, to 25% for England and Wales debts. We like to be competitive but also provide fair exchange for excellent service. At Athena Collections, we tailor the commission rate offered. The larger the debt is, the lower the commission rate, the smaller the debt is, the larger commission rate. The same rule applies for the age of debt i.e. the older the debt is, the larger the commission rate, the sooner the debt is passed to us, the lower the commission rate will be. Finally, we also take into account the volume of debts to be collected and the debt type i.e. B2B, B2C, services or goods, rent arrears, post judgment etc…
International debts range from 25% to 40% depending on where in the world the debtor is located.
So, as you can see it is not as simple as applying one flat commission rate because we do not agree that a debt of £100,000 that is 30 days old should attract the same commission rate of a £1,000 debt that is 2 years old.
Are there any additional costs likely to be incurred?
Potentially, but not without your consent. In the first instance we will try to collect your debt and there will be no additional costs. However, if our pre litigation efforts are exhausted then we will report back to you and give you the appropriate options which could be but not limited to a) write off the debt b) take legal or enforcement action c) take insolvency action or d) try and negotiate settlement. At this point we will explain any additional costs which you are likely to incur and then you will need to make an informed decision as to which way to proceed. We like doing it this way to ensure our clients are in control of the situation.
Ultimately, we believe the value we provide is unparalleled but equally we want to be fair and competitive whilst running a profitable business and hope we have demonstrated this above.
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Debt Recovery for Business owners...
Debt recovery may not be high up on the list of things to do of a busy company. Sometimes your business may lack the time or the staff to proactively follow-up late payers, and this can have a knock-on effect to your overall cash flow. This is exactly why our company was established; by providing you with our debt recovery services we essentially become an extension of your business, saving you valuable personnel time and money.
We also appreciate that it is of paramount importance for every business to maintain favourable client relations and therefore we utilise professional debt recovery methods that are aimed at resolving matters swiftly and amicably in order to maintain your good standing with your clients.
We can seamlessly escalate your unpaid accounts with the assistance of our highly professional debt recovery service. With our knowledge and extensive experience in the industry, all your cash flow problems are going to become a thing of the past.
Our debt recovery services are customised to each company's requirements; therefore, we can give you the options and together we develop a plan on how to approach the debtors.
We are able to manage your accounts receivable functions as a one-off project, partially or fully. Together, we can identify which part and at what stage you would like us to outsource the accounts receivable procedure. Our company's commission rates are low based on monies recovered, as well as the stage at which the account is given to us. The sooner the problem is passed on to us, the higher the chance of collection and lower our commission will be. It is as simple as that.
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The pre-legal debt recovery services are developed to increase debt collections without the need to take legal action in any form; therefore, not having to instruct lawyers who will charge a fee by the hour.
Although our proactive approach to debt recovery usually achieves the desired results, we always aim to be open and transparent about our intentions but unfortunately, no matter what they say, this does not always happen. Debtors may not pay for a plethora of reasons, such as insolvency, not having received the invoice, the debt being disputed, cash flow being tight, their circumstances have recently changed, and much more.
Our company will establish at the earliest point whether or not the debtor is willing to pay, and will inform you of this fact allowing you to make a sensible decision.
There are numerous options we can offer at this point, all of which are explained including the pros and cons of each option; therefore, you can be clear of the procedure to follow.
If you can give us parameters, we are prepared to work within those to collect the outstanding amounts on your behalf.