I am a designer with a 1-2 years experience with front-end development. I don't offer that service very often as a freelancer, so I wanted to get some advice on a freelance situation.

I developed a one-page website for a client. The client gave me a desktop view of the design and an example of how they wanted the navigation to work; that was it. I created the fully-responsive website, everything working fully.

They wanted to add a new section to the page that was not a part of the original design they gave me. Now they want the intro type to fade away as the user scrolls in order to stop the overlapping of the sticky navigation (this was not part of the original ask) and finally they are wanting me to animate the hamburger icon to an "x" a certain way when the mobile navigation opens on a phone. I feel like they just keep tacking on things that I was not originally told about.

Is this part of the freelance development process, continually adding new behaviors and more and more jQuery?

Should I be telling them this stuff will cost more because it was not a part of the original plan? Do developers build a cushion in the budget (let's say an extra $500) to allow for this type of stuff?

Thank you for help!

  • 3
    Look up more of the questions on scope-creep. You may learn a thing or two about this type of client, and how to deal with them effectively.
    – Canadian Luke
    Nov 13, 2015 at 2:43

3 Answers 3


Each time they tack on additional things to what you were told about and calculated the price for - a new section to the page; a fade for the intro type as the user scrolls; animating the hamburger icon to an "x" a certain way on certain devices - you inform them of the additional fee which will be required for the extra work.

If they are being difficult about paying the original fee for the original scope of work, they are unlikely to provide the additional fees any more easily.

Here is a question about dealing with a difficult client in this situation.
Dealing with a difficult client that wants free work


This has been answered several times. In a nutshell, if the requirements aren't fixed, then the price can't be either. Do the original work and consider doing the rest on an hourly basis.


This belongs to the daily life of service providers. The customers often can't evaluate their needs and only discover them after hands-on practice. (This is why a prototyping approach can be useful - but this is another matter.)

As regards myself, I try to anticipate those extras and silently leave some safety margin in the budget. Then the contract states what I will do and not do, and I give an hourly cost for additional work. I also leave the option of doing a separate offer on request.


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