Half up front is the norm in the midwest. New water line, $12K, just completed; partial roof, $9.5K, three weeks wait; partial siding and trim, $34K, months wait. None of which makes my house nicer to live in. OK, having water is nice. We got the cash quote, then asked them for 18 months no interest, and two out of three said they'd do that. So there's that.