Retainer Agreement Template

As a highly-skilled professional, your ultimate goal is to lock in consistent income for your services. That’s why we’ve worked with legal experts to create a retainer agreement (PDF and Word) for you to use repeatedly to secure long-term clients.

Retainer Agreement Template (Free Sample)

As a highly-skilled professional, your ultimate goal is to lock in consistent income for your services. That’s why we’ve worked with legal experts to create a retainer agreement (PDF and Word) for you to use repeatedly to secure long-term clients.
What’s in this template?
  • • A list of services provided
  • • Retainer fee schedule
  • • Expense reimbursement terms
Click below to download our free retainer agreement template

What is the purpose of a retainer agreement?

A retainer is a fee structure where a service provider charges a client for a certain amount of hours each month. Retainer fees can be charged in advance for the upcoming month, or after the work has been carried out.
Retainers are historically used as a billing method for lawyers and consultants, as you never know how much support you’ll need from these professionals in a given month.
The retainer model has recently become popular amongst creative freelancers like content writers and social media managers as they tend to develop long-term relationships with clients. Rather than relying on one-off opportunities where income is volatile, monthly retainer agreements give creatives more stable work. On the other side, clients pay retainers, knowing they have access to services when they need them.
A retainer agreement is a formal contract between a service provider and a client laying out the terms of the work to be conducted every month.

Grab a copy of our free Retainer Agreement Sample

As a professional service provider, you’re incredibly busy doing client work. That’s why we’ve designed a simple retainer agreement template that will scale as your business grows.
Click below to get access to our retainer agreement

How to use your retainer agreement to secure more long-term clients

As we’ve already established, retainer contracts are the holy grail when it comes to services revenue, as it allows you and your agency to make recurring, predictable revenue.
However, successfully presenting a retainer contract to prospective clients is no easy feat. The perception is that retainer contracts are a big financial commitment. So it would be best if you showed clients that your monthly fees are an investment, not a cost.
Below are four steps on how to secure more retainer work

Step 1 - Determine your high-value repeatable service

Before you can present the idea of a retainer to a client, you need to get super clear on what value you’re offering.
Create a list of all the services you offer and start pulling out all of the repeatable ones.
Now rank them from the highest impact to the lowest impact on client results.
For example, if you’re an SEO consultant, you may offer one-off services like website audits and site speed optimization. But you also provide recurring work such as content development and building backlinks.
Once you have your one to two high impact repeatable services, you need to be confident that you or your team can consistently deliver these services to clients monthly. In other words, do you have the systems in place to deliver time and time again?

Step 2 - Start with one-off jobs

When working with new clients, one-off jobs are critical to building trust with your clients before pitching ongoing work.
Here are the benefits of starting with one-off jobs:
You get to understand your client’s business. It’s only through working together you begin to get a handle on how your client makes money, who their customer is, and generally how they like to operate. This information is invaluable as you prepare to switch them over to a retainer.
One-off jobs allow you to showcase your value quickly. Clients need to know you’re capable of getting results in their business, so what better way to do that, than taking on some quick projects to show your value?
You start to see the gaps and opportunities in your client’s business. When you work with clients on projects, it’s only then you begin to see the cracks in their business as it relates to your skillset. Use this time to note down some potential areas of improvement that will likely get your clients the results they desire.

Step 3 - Sell your retainer package

Now that you know your repeatable services and you’ve gotten to know your client through one-off work, you’re in a prime position to pitch your retainer package.
Take the opportunity to put together a proposal that speaks to how your services will help your client get their most outstanding results. Reference what they’re doing exceptionally well, and highlight the areas that you feel you can make a huge difference.
Think of your retainer package as a product—meaning that your services are linked to tangible results.

Step 4 - Present your retainer agreement

Your retainer agreement template is best added to the end of your proposal. If your client feels comfortable proceeding, your agreement acts as an official document to start your retainer relationship.
Your agreement is also a fantastic tool to reference when following up clients about your proposal to see if they have any objections about your terms and conditions.

Grab a copy of our free Retainer Agreement Sample

As a professional service provider, you’re incredibly busy doing client work. That’s why we’ve designed a simple retainer agreement template that will scale as your business grows.
Click below to get access to our retainer agreement
Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ about our Retainer
Agreement Template

Retainer agreements can be formed verbally, written, and using other forms of communication. However, we recommend you prepare a formal document to be signed by all parties involved and eliminate any confusion about the nature of the work to be performed.
Yes, absolutely. We recognize that retainer contracts may need to be customized to clients’ needs. So that’s why our template comes in a Word file format so you can make adjustments as you see fit.
Just keep in mind that if you make any drastic changes, it may be worth getting a lawyer to look over it for compliance.
Like any employment agreement, a retainer contract may be terminated in the following circumstances:
  1. Any party breaches the conditions of the agreement
  2. Any party gives written notice to another party based on the agreed notice period
document preview

Retainer Agreement

Retainer Agreement

Parties

– This Retainer Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Agreement”) is entered into on ______________ (the “Effective Date”), by and between __________________________, with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Consultant”) and ______________ with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Company”) (collectively referred to as the “Parties”).

Term

– This Agreement shall be effective on the date of signing this Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Effective Date”) and will continue on a month to month basis.
– Upon the end of the term of the Agreement, this Agreement will not be automatically renewed for a new term.

Services Provided

– Hereby, the Consultant agrees to provide the services enlisted below (hereinafter referred to as the “Services”):
  1. ______________________
  2. ______________________
  3. ______________________
  4. ______________________
  5. ______________________
  6. ______________________
  7. ______________________
  8. ______________________
– The Parties agree that the Services must be completed by _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

Retainer

– It is hereby agreed upon that the Consultant will provide an invoice with an amount of ______________ to the Company on the first day of every month for all the Services provided as well as any pre-approved expenses incurred during the previous month.
– The Parties agree that the Company is to pay the invoice within ______________ days.
– The Parties agree that the Company will pay the invoice through the means of ______________.

Expenses

– Hereby, the Parties agree that the Consultant is entitled to the reimbursement for all the expenses that have incurred for when it comes to providing the Services agreed upon.
– The Company agrees to pre-approve all the expenses that exceed the amount of ______________ with a condition that the Consultant includes a proof of payment or a receipt for all the reimbursable expenses.

Relationship Between The Parties

– Hereby, the Parties agree that this Agreement is a retainer agreement where the Consultant is an independent contractor who provides the services hereunder.
– Under no circumstances shall the Consultant be considered an employee, representative, agent or partner.
– Whereas, this Agreement does not create any other partnership between the Parties.

Exclusivity

– The Parties agree that this Agreement is not an exclusive arrangement and that the Parties are entitled to enter into other similar agreements with other parties.

Termination

– This Agreement may be terminated in case the following occurs:
  1. Immediately in case one of the Parties breaches this Agreement or one of the conditions set forth in this Agreement and does not amend them within a period of ______________.
  2. At any given time by providing a written notice to the other party ______________ days prior to terminating the Agreement.

Dispute Resolution

– Any dispute or difference whatsoever arising out of or in connection with this Agreement shall be submitted to ______________ Arbitration/mediation/negotiation (Circle one) in accordance with, and subject to the laws of ______________.

Ownership

– The Parties agree that all the work product that is created by the Consultant will remain the exclusive property of the Company as long as it is relevant to the performance of the Services set forth in this Agreement.

Governing Law

– This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of ______________

Confidentiality

– All terms and conditions of this Agreement and any confidential information provided by the Company during the term of the Agreement must be kept confidential by the Consultant, unless the disclosure is required pursuant to process of law.
– Disclosing or using this information for any purpose beyond the scope of this Agreement, or beyond the exceptions set forth above, is expressly forbidden without the prior consent of the Company.
– The Consultant’s obligation to maintain confidentiality will survive termination of this Agreement and will remain in effect indefinitely.

Severability

– In an event where any provision of this Agreement is found to be void and unenforceable by a court of competent jurisdiction, then the remaining provisions will remain to be enforced in accordance with the Parties’ intention.

Entire Agreement

– This Agreement contains the entire agreement and understanding among the Parties hereto with respect to the subject matter hereof, and supersedes all prior agreements, understandings, inducements and conditions, express or implied, oral or written, of any nature whatsoever with respect to the subject matter hereof. The express terms hereof control and supersede any course of performance and/or usage of the trade inconsistent with any of the terms hereof.

Amendments

– The Parties agree that any amendments made to this Agreement must be in writing where they must be signed by both Parties to this Agreement.
– As such, any amendments made by the Parties will be applied to this Agreement.

Signature And Date

– The Parties hereby agree to the terms and conditions set forth in this Agreement and such is demonstrated throughout their signatures below:
Consultant
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________
Company
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________

Grab a copy of our free Retainer Agreement Sample

As a professional service provider, you’re incredibly busy doing client work. That’s why we’ve designed a simple retainer agreement template that will scale as your business grows.
Click below to get access to our retainer agreement
Download Retainer Agreement Doc
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