Article quick links:
- Platform fee
- Payment processing fees
- Payout fees
- What to expect if you want to switch to subscription billing
This fee covers the use of Patreon’s membership platform. The legacy founder’s platform fee is 5% of processed payments. This means that we only take money if the creator is making money.
Check whether or not you have the founding creator 5% plan from your creator account settings.
PAYMENT PROCESSING FEES
This is the cost of moving funds from your patrons to your creator balance. As a founding creator, your payment processing fees are variable. We show the amount deducted for payment processing fees for the month in the “Payment Fees” column of your Earnings dashboard.
If you are on the founder's pricing and change your currency to another supported currency, you’ll be subject to the payment processing fees related to the new currency choice. For more information read through our details about payment processing fees for supported currencies.
What are payment processing fees?
Payment processing fees cover the cost of Patreon’s robust payments architecture, plus the fees our payment processors charge each time they process a successful pledge or refund. Payment processors charge a percentage of the transaction amount plus a fixed number of cents per transaction. Your payment processing fees will vary based on your tier amounts (results in the pledge amounts charged), your patrons’ method of payment (i.e. card or PayPal) and VAT.
Shared patronage can reduce your processing fees. Shared patronage is when you have patrons in common with other creators on Patreon. Patreon processes all pledges with the same billing date in one transaction and delivers one receipt to the patrons. The creators included in the one transaction share the transaction fee, which can reduce processing fees for the creators involved.
Tier amounts can increase or decrease your effective processing rate due to the fixed fee component. While the fixed fee varies due to patron payment method and shared patronage, it can be as high as 30 cents per transaction. We generally recommend keeping your lowest tier priced above $1.00 to avoid a high processing fee effective rate.
Another way to look at it: If you have many patrons with small pledge amounts then processing fees will be a larger percentage of your overall earnings. If you have just a few patrons with large pledge amounts then processing fees will be a smaller percentage of your overall earnings.
Sales tax, VAT, GST and QST
Finally, taxes like Value-added tax (VAT), Goods and services tax (GST), Québec sales tax (QST) and US Sales tax, can increase your payment processing fees.
Patreon is legally required to collect these taxes depending on your patrons’ location. This is charged on top of your tier amount if the patron is located in a country that uses one of these taxes.
Payment processors charge fees on the transaction amount, which includes tax if Patreon collected VAT, GST, QST or Sales tax. While you as the creator don’t have to worry about collecting tax from your patrons, it can affect your effective payment processing rate. Learn more about how we handle taxes for creators here: Patreon’s Sales Tax Requirements and How VAT works for creators on Patreon.
This is the charge for moving funds from your creator balance to your bank, PayPal or Payoneer account. Your payout fee is not listed in the breakdown of fees within your creator earnings dashboard. This fee is only taken once you transfer funds out of your Patreon account and into your bank account. This fee is determined by the payout processor you’ve selected.
Visit this article to learn more information about payout fees.
Opt into updated payment processing rates
On 7 May 2019, we launched new creator plans and new payment processing rates that apply to new creators joining Patreon on or after that date. Founding creators kept their old rates, but can opt into the new payment processing rates by sending us a note by clicking the “Email Patreon Support” button at the bottom of the page.
If you’d like to know how to compare your founder’s plan rate to the new creator plan rates, you can get an approximation by following these steps:
- Click on Patrons in the navigation bar to the left, then select Relationship Manager
- Select Active patrons in the drop down menu under Membership types and download a CSV of your active/paid patrons
- For all pledges $3 or less, apply 5% + 10 cents
- For all pledges over $3, apply 2.9% + 30 cents
- Sum all calculated payment processing fees
- Compare sum to current payment processing fee total on the Earnings dashboard
- If sum is larger than the amount on the Earnings dashboard then the new rates are likely not better.
Please note that this is not a perfect estimation as it doesn’t factor in European Union VAT or PayPal non-US payments.
A note on switching to subscription billing
If you are a founding creator and switch to subscription billing, you’ll still experience the same payment processing fees with some reductions from shared patrons whose bills renew on the same date. In other words, if you have patrons who also sign up for other creators on the same date (and with the same payment method), all of those bills are processed in one transaction and you split the payment processing fee with those creators.
If your new patrons subscribe to other founding creators on different days of the month, which may be more common with subscription billing, each membership will be processed as a separate transaction with its own processing fee.
Processing fees from shared patrons already being charged on the 1st of the month will still be split among that patron’s creators who are on founder’s pricing. There is no change to your platform fee or fixed third-party payment processing rates.