4 Ways That Real Estate Sign Installers Can Reduce Credit Card Processing Costs

As real estate transactions have decreased this year, one way that real estate sign installers can keep more of the revenues that you earn from serving Realtors and brokers, is to make sure you are doing everything you can to minimize credit card processing fees.

Over the years that we've been providing software to real estate sign installers and runners, we've seen four effective ways for real estate sign installers to keep their credit card processing fees as low as possible.

1. Minimize Refunds by Charging When the Work is Done

The best way to minimize refunds is to charge when the work is completed, instead of when the order is submitted.

If you charge when orders for real estate sign installations are submitted, if the customer cancels for any reason, you still have to pay the credit card fees.

Also, if your current sign installation software provider makes their money by charging a processing fee, on top of the credit card fee, then you also can't recover the fee that you just paid to the installation software provider. That's right. Even though you didn't actually get any revenues from the order, you may still be paying the installation software provider for the order. How crazy is that!

If you are in that situation, your installation software provider may encourage you to charge customers when installation orders are submitted, for obvious reasons.  But, in our experience, when we owned and operate a real estate sign installation business serving thousands of agents, we found that charging when the work was done (1) eliminated credit card fees on refunds, it also (2) eliminated accounting reconsiliation time that was spent on those refund transactions, we (3) eliminated the time that our office staff had to spend dealing with refunds, and (4) agents were happier because they were never waiting for their refund. It was a much better experience for the Realtors.

2. Get Your Large Customers to Pay by ACH

Transaction fees are lower when your customer pays by ACH, which bascially means they give you their checking account, and you charge their orders directly to their checking account.  In this way, the customer does not pay by credit card.

If you compare the fees of ACH versus credit cards, this is what you would find for Stripe and QuickBooks. (Later in this article, we compare the fees for the most common credit card processors used by real estate sign installers.)

  • ACH Fee:  0.8%
  • Credit Card Fee:  2.3% + 30 cents

  • ACH Fee: 1%
  • Credit Card Fee:  2.9% + 25 cents

As you can see, the fees for credit cards are dramatically higher than ACH.  So, if you can get your largest customers to pay you by ACH instead of by credit card, you can save some real money.

If your real estate sign installation platform does not support ACH payments, give us a call. Jistix does.    : )

3. Use Stripe to Process your Payments

Stripe has the lowest processing fees of any provider used by real estate sign installers.

Now, the one thing you have to be careful about is that this only works if you actually have your own Stripe account, in your company name.  If your real estate sign installation software provider passes the transactions hrough THEIR Stripe account, and then gives you a daily or weekly payout, that means you do not own the Stripe account.  They own it.

And that means they might be charging you extra fees on top of what Stripe is charging to them. So you need to check that.

If you're using QuicklBooks or any other payment processor, you're probably paying too much. Every time we've helped a real estate sign installer evaluate their payment processing fees, we've found that they were paying more than if they switched to Stripe.

But, again, you have to get your own Stripe account. You can't let your real estate sign installation software provider pass the transactions through a Stripe account that they own.

4. Connect Your QuickBooks to Your Payment Processor Directly

This tip is a little less obvious. If you are using your own payment processor, in an account that you directly own, then you should connect that payment processor directly into your QuickBooks, with daily automated synchornization, so that every single transaction goes directly into your QuickBooks, as a separe transaction.


Because this one little trick will dramatically reduce the amount of hours that your account has to spend reconciling your books, which means your account fees will drop significantly.  Or if you have an internal book keeper, they can spend their time on more valuable activities, instead of manually moving and reconciliing transactions every day or week.

It's just a massive waste of time in the year 2023.

We used all of these tips when we owned and operated our own real estate sign installation business, which we sold a few years ago.  And we help all of our real estate sign installation software customers implement these steps, when they onboard to our software.

If you'd like to know more about any of these tips. Drop us a line any time.
Jistix makes it super simple for your customers to place orders, 24 hours a day, and then allows you to easily track and manage every piece of equipment that you manage.
We offer advanced dashboards and reports for your broker clients. And if you're trying to win a deal with a large broker who wants customized reports or services, we can work with you to create exactly the custom features that you need to win the deal.
At Jistix, we have been passionate about helping runners and installers give flawless service to their customers, for years. If you want to take your business to the next level, we would love to talk. Give us a call or email us any time.