Vendor Communication Best Practices

Vendor Communication Best Practices

  • The COVID-19 situation might affect your ability to pay rent, bank loans, insurance premiums, utilities, or vendors on a timely basis. If you are unable to pay these items, open a line of communication with the company you owe.
  • If you communicate honestly, there is a chance they might defer payment or lower their interest rates and maintain your relationship in good standing.
  • When writing your letter, use a polite and professional tone, and ask for understanding and time to remedy the situation.
  • Keep it simple and concise. Do not write the same thing twice and edit out any unnecessary information.
  • Stay familiar with up-to-date information about federal, state and local COVID-19 relief ordinances, and provide any required documentation as an attachment to your letter.
  • Sign and date the letter in blue ink. This makes it easier to spot an original letter from a copy if you send a physical letter.
  • Send the original letter to your landlord, bank, lender, or vendor as soon as possible via email or postal mail, and give them a call. Clear communication will help show that you are committed to be an ideal partner.
  • Include copies of any documents that may support your request, such as hospital paperwork, financials, or job/employee termination notices. Make sure to remove or redact any personal information the recipient does not need to see.
  • Keep a copy of all your letters, as well as any correspondence between you and the landlord, bank, lender, utility, or vendor. You might attach copies of your communication as part of future requests.
  • Your landlord/bank/lender/vendors are under no obligation to work with you on delinquent rent/loan payment/premium/other financial obligations. However, they may extend courtesies to you given the current situation that you would not receive otherwise. Communicating early will help them understand your situation.

Be proactive and communicate with all parties involved. The objective of communicating timely is to start a conversation with your business partners.

Effective communication starts now! Use these sample letters:

Sample Letter to Landlord to request rent relief/payment plan

Sample Letter to Bank, Financial Institution, or Insurance Company to request payment relief

Sample Letter to Suppliers/Vendors/Utility Companies


Source – Intuit and Rossana Giannini, JD- shared for public use