How to Set Up a House Account for a Full Service Restaurant
A house account is a system of charging meals and other purchases to a restaurant's account, instead of to an individual customer's credit card or other form of payment. This system is often used by larger businesses, such as corporate headquarters, schools, and government offices that want to provide meals for their employees but don't want to deal with the hassle of having each employee pay individually. For full service restaurants, setting up a house account can be a great way to increase business and attract more customers.
What is a House Account?
A house account is a type of account that is set up between a restaurant and a customer. The customer pays the restaurant in advance for a certain amount of meals or services, and the restaurant keeps track of the total balance and records each purchase the customer makes against that balance. The customer will then have a predetermined amount of time, usually one month or longer, to pay back the amount owed, usually with an additional fee for late payment.
House accounts are a great way for customers to enjoy the convenience of dining out without having to worry about carrying cash or a credit card. They also provide restaurants with a reliable source of income, as customers are more likely to return to the restaurant if they have an existing house account. Additionally, house accounts can be used to reward loyal customers with discounts or other incentives.
Benefits of Setting Up a House Account
Setting up a house account can be beneficial for both the restaurant and the customer. For the restaurant, it provides an easy way to increase business by allowing customers to sign up for the account and make purchases without having to worry about making payments right away. It also allows the restaurant to build loyalty with its customers, as the customers will likely come back again and again if they are happy with the quality of food and service.
The benefits for customers include convenience, as they don't have to worry about making separate payments for each meal or service they purchase, and they can easily keep track of their spending. Additionally, customers may receive discounts or other incentives from the restaurant when they sign up for a house account.
Setting up a house account also allows customers to pay for their meals over time, which can be especially helpful for those who are on a budget. Furthermore, customers may be able to use their house account to pay for meals at other restaurants that are part of the same chain, making it easier to keep track of their spending and take advantage of any discounts or promotions that may be available.
Determining Who Will Have Access to the House Account
Before setting up a house account, it is important to decide who will have access to it. It is important to consider both the customer's needs and the restaurant's policies when deciding who should be allowed to use the house account. For example, if the customer is a corporate headquarters, it might make sense to limit access to just a few key personnel. If the customer is a school or government office, it might make sense to provide access to all employees.
In addition, it is important to consider the payment method associated with the house account. For example, if the customer is a corporate headquarters, it might make sense to set up a corporate credit card to be used for all purchases. This would ensure that all purchases are tracked and accounted for. On the other hand, if the customer is a school or government office, it might make sense to set up a prepaid debit card that can be used for all purchases. This would ensure that the customer is not overspending and that all purchases are tracked and accounted for.
Setting Up the House Account
Once you have determined who will have access to the house account, it is time to set up the account itself. The first step is for the customer to provide the restaurant with the necessary information, such as contact information, billing address, and payment method. Once this information is provided, the restaurant can then set up the account and provide the customer with a house account number.
The next step is for the customer to add funds to their house account. Depending on the restaurant's policies, this can be done either in person or online. It is also important to let employees know how much they are allowed to spend using the house account and how much they are expected to pay back within a certain timeframe.
It is important to keep track of the house account balance and to ensure that employees are not overspending. The restaurant should also have a system in place to remind employees when payments are due and to follow up if payments are not made on time. This will help to ensure that the house account remains in good standing.
Managing Your House Account
Once you have set up your house account, it is important to manage it properly. The restaurant should keep track of all purchases made using the house account and make sure that they are properly accounted for. It is also important to keep track of how much money is owing on the account so that it can be paid back in a timely manner.
It is also important to set up a system for tracking the account. This could include setting up a spreadsheet or using an accounting software program to keep track of all purchases and payments. This will help ensure that the account is managed properly and that all payments are made on time.
Guidelines for Using a House Account
When setting up a house account, it is important to set some guidelines for how it will be used. These guidelines should include things like who can use the account, what types of purchases are allowed on the account, and how often payments should be made. It is also important to ensure that all employees understand these guidelines and follow them when using the house account.
It is also important to keep track of all purchases made on the house account. This can be done by having a designated person responsible for tracking the purchases and ensuring that all payments are made on time. Additionally, it is important to review the guidelines regularly to ensure that they are still relevant and up to date.
How to Secure Your House Account
Once you have set up your house account, it is important to take steps to ensure that it remains secure. This includes making sure that only authorized individuals have access to the account and that all payments are made on time. It is also important to make sure that all purchases are tracked and billed accurately.
It is also important to regularly review your account activity and to set up two-factor authentication for added security. Additionally, you should be sure to change your passwords regularly and to use strong passwords that are difficult to guess. Finally, it is important to be aware of any suspicious activity on your account and to report it to the appropriate authorities.
What to Do if There is a Dispute Over Charges on the House Account
If there is ever a dispute over charges on the house account, it is important to address it promptly and professionally. The restaurant should take steps to investigate any disputes in order to determine who is responsible for what charges. If necessary, the restaurant should contact its customer service department as well as any outside services involved in order to determine who is responsible for what charges and how best to resolve any disputes.