Patreon offers 3 different billing models you can choose from and an annual billing feature (available for charge up-front creators). Your billing model is set in the Getting Paid section of your Page settings.
Use the billing models reference table (below) to learn about what to expect when patrons take actions like changing their membership or cancelling.
This billing model is the default when you start your page. Meant to give patrons a preview of what your membership is like; patrons are not charged once they join. Instead, they get access to your page and benefits as soon as they subscribe. We then process their payment on the 1st of each month for the previous month.
Charge upfront gives patrons the same monthly access with a couple exceptions:
- Patrons pay for access to your backlog of creations as soon as they join
- We process their next payment on the 1st of each month going forward – 1st-of-the-month bills grant access for the current month
You can enable our annual membership feature, which allows patrons to pay for a year upfront. Creators who charge upfront and have a solid payment processing history are eligible to enable annual membership. You can learn more about offering annual plans here: Offering Annual Memberships for my patrons
Per creation (Legacy billing model)
Per creation was our first ever billing model. Based on a “choose what you pay model,” you can create differently priced tiers, however, paid content is shared with all patrons. To bill patrons, you must designate which posts you want us to charge for. When the designated posts are published, we create a bill for your active patrons. We then process your patrons’ payments on the 1st of the next month or as soon as they cancel their membership.
Patrons can set a monthly maximum
Patrons subscribed to a creator who bills per-creation can set a monthly maximum of posts to support in a given month – this ensures that patrons aren’t charged more than they can agree to. A patron’s monthly max does not impact their membership access.
Learn more about how monthly maxes work here: The patron's monthly limit
Billing models reference table
Now that we’ve covered the basics for each billing model, let’s expand on what you can expect to happen when patrons adjust their membership or cancel.
They get access to their upgraded membership straight away.
If they keep their higher membership through the 1st of the month, we charge them their higher amount.
Their membership access switches to the lower tier instantly.
If they keep their lower membership until the 1st of the month, we charge them their new, lower amount.
Your patron will lose membership access as soon as they cancel. This includes the ability to comment on or like posts and access to other benefits, like Discord.
We won’t bill the patron after they cancel.
They pay the difference to upgrade and instantly get their new membership access.
If no additional changes are made, they’ll pay their new tier amount in full on the 1st of the month.
Since they’ve paid for the month, their downgrade won’t take effect until the 1st of the following month.
They will have the same membership access until their downgraded membership takes effect.
They keep access for the current month. At the end of the month, their access expires and we no longer bill them.
Once their membership ends, they’ll no longer have access to your Patreon posts or other benefits, like Discord.
They pay the difference to upgrade their membership.
They instantly get access to content and benefits for their new membership. Their year membership term extends 1 year from their upgrade date.
|At the moment, patrons won’t be able to downgrade or decrease the amount of an annual membership.|
Patrons have membership access for the remainder of their term.
Once their year of membership ends, they’ll no longer have access to your Patreon posts or other benefits, like Discord.
|Their upgrade takes effect immediately. This means that any paid posts you create after they upgrade will be billed at their new membership amount up to their monthly max.||Their downgrade takes effect immediately. If you make paid posts after they downgrade, the patron will be billed the new, lower amount.|
If they cancel their membership before the 1st of the month we will attempt to process their pending bills.
As soon as they cancel, their membership access is removed.
What happens if a patron’s payment declines?
Regardless of your billing model, we revoke a patron's membership access if their payment is declined until they resolve the issue.
You can learn more about why payments may be declined and how to help a patron through the issue here: Why have my patrons' payments been declined?