John N., Missouri
I had a parent ask me about making one annual payment instead of paying monthly. This particular parent has a history of paying late (even with what I consider ‘pleasant’ reminders) so her request took me a little by surprise. While the vision of a large one-time infusion of tuition money had me doing an inner happy dance, I hesitated in saying ‘yes.’ For those of you who accept annual payments (or even semi-annual payments), let me pose a couple of questions:
- do you give a discount for paying it all upfront?
- what contingencies do you have for unexpected life changes that may happen, like relocation or extended illness?
Any other pearls of wisdom you may care to drop here would be appreciated.
Gian M., California
I have never had anyone make me that offer. Sometimes my more forgetful parents pay 2 months in advance, which is not a big deal. I would accept the lump-sum payment and offer a small discount (2% to 5%), but I would also be prepared to refund the parent (pro-rated) if her/his situation changes like you suggest (job loss, relocation, etc).