Payments

How to receive and manage payments for your classes

Shahid Lakha avatar
Written by Shahid Lakha
Updated over a week ago

How to receive payments for your classes on Spires

This article describes and documents the way payments work on Spires. There is a summary in the video below, but this article will detail:


Your Video Guide to Receiving Payments on Spires


Ending the Class and Confirming Length

At the end of a class, close the Lessonspace tab and return to Spires:

Then click the red 'End Class' button.

You will then see a pop-up that allows you to confirm the class length.

*** This should be done immediately after a class ***

This is because once you submit this form, the payment for the class is automatically deducted from the client's credit card. If you do not confirm the class the chances of a payment failing or payment problems arising increase over time.

You can also leave a rating of the class for your student and well as some feedback. It is not compulsory, but is a useful way to leave a record of what happened in the class for both yourself and the student.

Once you click next, you will be asked to confirm the class length and rating, clicking 'Confirm Class' will then charge the client's card the amount shown:

If the charge is successful, it will be shown in the payments area

If the charge fails, it will still be shown in the payments area as failed. See our article on failed payments here.


Overcharging

One of the biggest sources of complaints on Spires is tutors charging more than the scheduled class length.

We do not recommend charging for extra class time unless your student explicitly agreed to the charges, even if you overrun. When it comes to a few extra minutes of class time, goodwill goes a long way in building rapport with clients and overcharging can destroy the relationship quickly which is counter productive if you want to provide a service and make more money over the long-run.

Obviously if the class was significantly longer than scheduled you may want to charge and we do not want tutors to be out of pocket. But tutors who receive repeated complaints about overcharging will face action from Spires.

Communication is key here, just explain to clients what you are going to do and why as that solves 90% of problems that might arise. If you are teaching a child, speak to their parents/guardians, or the people paying for the lessons.

If you charge for more time than the schedule class length, you will see the following red warning message. If everything is ok, and the extra charge applicable, simply click 'Confirm Class'.


Setting up Your Payment Method

Spires offers two payment methods:

  1. Bank transfer - The primary method

  2. PayPal - If you are in a country not supported by our bank transfers

1. Bank Transfers

Bank transfers are supported by a third-party provider named Stripe. This is our primary payment method and for legal reasons, we ask that all tutors who can use bank transfers do so.

If your country is listed on this page, then payment via bank transfer will be mandatory.

Detailed instructions on adding bank accounts can be found here. The process consists of giving your bank details and providing documentation to confirm your identity and address. You will also be able to add a business bank account if you prefer.

Please note: Stripe may ask for some KYC (Know Your Customer) documents to be provided, e.g. driver's licence, passport. These are legal requirements and without these Stripe cannot take payments from clients, as they have nowhere they can pass that payment on to. This means the payments will fail, which is why it is very important to keep an eye on this payments page, scroll right to the bottom, and make sure you provide any documentation promptly.

Payments will be sent on Fridays, however, bank transfers take 3-5 working days to clear. This will depend on your bank and the timing of public holidays in your local jurisdiction.

2. PayPal

PayPal will only be used for tutors who cannot be paid via Bank transfer through Stripe. No other tutors will be able to sign up for it, and tutors who are in a country supported by Stripe will have to move away from PayPal. There is a 3% fee for payments sent via PayPal, to cover the additional expense of processing international payments via PayPal for us.

To receive payments via PayPal, you have to provide an email address on the payments page.

Once you select either method, you need to follow the instructions carefully and provide all of the information required. Not doing so will result in payment delays and unnecessary and avoidable problems for our team.

What happens to payments once they are collected?

Payments are collected by Stripe and split into two components: the Tutors fee and Spires' platform fee. Your Tutor fee will be allocated to your Stripe account and paid out on Fridays. This is why tutors need their bank account set up before they give classes, if they have not configured Stripe, then Stripe has nowhere to pass the funds on to and therefore cannot take a payment from a client.

Spires has no control over funds, once they are collected, they are held by Stripe and paid out on Fridays.


Managing Your Payments

Your payment history and Spires Balance currently available for withdrawal are recorded under the Payments tab:


Deposits and Payouts

Once you have confirmed the length of a class, a payment record is generated under the section called 'Pending Deposits'.

If we have successfully collected the payment from the client's card for the class the payment will say 'Processing' for 48 hours. This window allows you to refund the client if a mistake has been made, which is done by clicking the blue 'refund' text and adjusting the time and charge for the class:

The classes under confirmation required mean that the client needs to approve the transaction through their bank. We would not be able to collect payment until this has been done by the client.

If it says failed, the client's card has been declined or has insufficient funds. In this case, you can message the client a polite reminder to add a new card or funds to their existing card. They will have been automatically prompted to do so on their end. There is more information here.

We will not be able to pay a tutor until the client pays, so do not accept further class requests until this has successfully been processed.

'Confirmation required' means that client needs to verify their transaction through their bank.

After 48 hours, your earnings will clear into your Spires Balance and will be available for withdrawal on the next withdrawal date:

We send withdrawals to your payment method on Friday for all classes that have successfully cleared by Tuesday midnight (UK time). If a class is done after Tuesday, it will be paid the following Friday.

Reminder: Bank transfers take 3-5 working days to clear, this is from the day they are paid out. There can be delays when there are public holidays.

The full history of all successful deposits and withdrawals into and from your account is shown in the Deposits & Withdrawal section:

For the classes which are marked in black and white:

Payout ready - The payment for this class is prepared to be sent to you the following Friday

Paid out - The payment for this class has already been sent to you

For the transfers which are marked in green:

Transferring - The payment for that week has been sent

Succeeded - The payment for that week has been received in your bank account

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