Refunding A Deposit?

Decorating By summernoelle Updated 13 Oct 2008 , 1:33am by ccr03

summernoelle Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 5:38pm
post #1 of 8

I've never had a client cancel on me after paying a deposit. I know that business-wise I'm not obligated to refund anything, but as a decent person, should I?

I received the following email this morning:

Due to major custody issues, we will not have daughter's name for an unknown period of time. I am going to have to cancel her party and the order for her cake. Thanks. If you have any questions, please call me at XXXXXX.

What's the right thing to do? The party is in about a week, so I did turn down other orders for her. But I still feel for her....

7 replies
chutzpah Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 5:46pm
post #2 of 8

I would feel for her, too. It must be awful to fight over your kidlet like that.

However, this person did not ask for money back, and you lost business because you took the order.

Just reply kindly that you hope that you can help then at another time.

Or, if you really are having a weak-no-backbone-moment, you can apply the retainer to a future order.

summernoelle Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 6:10pm
post #3 of 8

I could do that.
She overpaid the deposit by about $10 because she had cash with now change, so I might refund that.

whimsette Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 6:41pm
post #4 of 8

I wholeheartedly agree with chutzpah.

[quote="summernoelle" I know that business-wise I'm not obligated to refund anything, but as a decent person, should I? [/quote]

Ummm... the decision to not refund a deposit does not make you an indecent or otherwise bad person.

loriemoms Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 6:48pm
post #5 of 8

For party cakes, I only do not refund a deposit if I am given less then 48 hours notice (mainly because usually the cakes are already baked or getting ready to be baked, etc) With a week notice, I would refund the deposit. For the future though, you should figure out what you want your policy to be..this happens every so often, because kids get sick and the party is canceled, etc. I also dont ask for a very big deposit (just 20 percent)

thefrostedcakencookie Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 7:24pm
post #6 of 8

oh wow, how sad is that? i don't think you should give her, her deposit back because you had a contract, but maybe tell her that you will put it toward a cake in the future.

good luck with this icon_smile.gif

summernoelle Posted 8 Oct 2008 , 8:30pm
post #7 of 8

Thanks everyone. I think I will offer to save it for another cake...

It is so terribly sad. It's the daughter's 1st b day...rips my heart out just thinking about stuff like that. When I met her, you could see how much she just adores her child. Poor thing!

ccr03 Posted 13 Oct 2008 , 1:33am
post #8 of 8

I know I'm the opposite on this, but I would give the deposit back.

Have you had to turn down business because of this order? If so, I wouldn't - it'll be your 'compensation' for lost business.

Again, I know this is not for everyone else, but I always try to take the approach as in what would I like a business for me to do for me? yes, I may not expect a refund, but I'll be happy about it and spread the word about how good that business is. I'm not going to spread "she's a cheap cake person", I'm going to say "she's a really good cake person with great customer service."

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