Isn't Wedding Season Over Yet?? Please Help!

Business By kellertur Updated 14 Oct 2009 , 9:21pm by indydebi

kellertur Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 6:08pm
post #1 of 15

I have a large wedding at the end of Oct. The bride paid in full a few weeks ago... They were expecting between 325-375 and my quote covered the entire scope, as I gave them a break.

They are now expecting roughly 100 fewer guests, which they gave me the total for today... which is past the 3 week prior mark. Wedding is in 2 1/2 weeks. My contract states I need a firm total by 3 weeks prior, but received a "most likely" total today.

They are very nice people and asked if they would be refunded "some" of the payment. My question is do I give them the total refund for 100 fewer guests, or just a percentage?

I want to be fair without cheating myself... do you have any advice on this? I'd appreciate it.

thank you icon_smile.gif

14 replies
__Jamie__ Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 6:10pm
post #2 of 15

I don't refund. But then again, I give them until 2 weeks latest to have their numbers. Honestly, if someone doesn't have their numbers at 2 weeks out....that's too bad.

leah_s Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 7:21pm
post #3 of 15

Three weeks is my cutoff. I'd take them the cake they paid for and suggest that they:
1) save some for the typical brunch/open house dessert t mom's house on the day after
2) cut big

What do you mean you already gave them a break? You mean you already discounted and they want $ back now?

nuh uh. Unless they want a refund from what it *should* have cost.

KoryAK Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 7:41pm
post #4 of 15

If you decide to give a refund, make sure you first calculate exactly what the price for the remaining cake should have been - pretty much what Leah said. I just had a bride go from 300 to 200 servings (well within timeline rights) and they had already paid in full. I had to refund $835 and it really stung but that's business!

HarleyDee Posted 13 Oct 2009 , 10:22pm
post #5 of 15

Make sure you let them know that it's going to affect the look of the cake too. Not sure what size tiers you're making, but that could possibly take away up to 2 of your tiers. That can make a cake design look way different. Maybe that will make them want to stick to the original design.

indydebi Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 12:05am
post #6 of 15

my contract says all payments are non-refundable.

Deb_ Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 2:52am
post #7 of 15

I've never had someone decrease the serving amounts, 100 servings....that's a big difference.

What does your contract state? Is it no changes/refunds 3 weeks prior? If so then you really don't have to refund any $$ per your contract.

minicuppie Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 10:42am
post #8 of 15

I agree with OP...maybe insted of 100 cupcakes they would like a special dessert for the rehersal dinner or the next day breakfast. That many cupcakes should about do a half sheet or a 2 layer and a pound or bundt. Be creative but do not refund!

online_annie Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 11:54am
post #9 of 15

It's important that you stick to your contract. That's what it's there for. If you start wavering and word gets could be extremely frustrating. Plus, you stated you already gave them a "break". Kindly refer them to the wording in the contract, then perhaps offer a discount towards their next cake purchase.

KHalstead Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 12:24pm
post #10 of 15

my contract states" ________ Changes: The date of your final payment (3 weeks before wedding date) is the final date for any changes of size, style or flavors of the cake. Any changes requested after this date cannot be guaranteed and may be subject to additional charges. If changes are made that result in the total cost being lower than the initial deposit or total of payments made to that point, the difference will not be refunded, you will just be considered Paid in Full.

Maybe you should think about adding something like this to your contract?? In the meantime, I would sit down and figure out how much it would cost them with the number of servings they want NOW and figure out how much lower that is from what they already paid for instance

Let's say you quoted them 300.00 when the price should have been 375.00
Now they want less, and their total would be 275.00...I would refund them $25.00 and let them know that when you initially quoted them you were giving them a "volume discount" or something like that, and that now that they are ordering less you have to charge "regular prices".

-K8memphis Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 1:40pm
post #11 of 15
Originally Posted by indydebi

my contract says all payments are non-refundable.

me too

-K8memphis Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 1:46pm
post #12 of 15
Originally Posted by minicuppie

I agree with OP...maybe insted of 100 cupcakes they would like a special dessert for the rehersal dinner or the next day breakfast. That many cupcakes should about do a half sheet or a 2 layer and a pound or bundt. Be creative but do not refund!

Do you mean do extra work?

I thought someone meant make the exact same cake as ordered and the clients can get creative with how they wanna use it.

I tell my brides that the cake they just bought is not contingent on their wedding plans. I do cakes. They just bought one whether they get hitched or not.

Just like when you make an appointment at the doc & don't show up they bill you anyhow. Stuff like that. Yes?

Amylou Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 4:29pm
post #13 of 15

I'm not in business, but I would say no refund. Here's the thing...say you book 2 weddings per week, but because hers was a larger order than you typically might do you didn't book another wedding for that week. So now, she decreases the order, you have no time to get another wedding booked to make up the difference in what money you would have made.

Her last minute change shouldn't be your loss.

kellertur Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 8:46pm
post #14 of 15

They are set on the design, and fortunately the design isn't effected, only the satellites were removed, except one which will stay in the kitchen. (I do not discount for kitchen cakes, I decorate them the same as cake.)
It's just one very tall cake ~

I will DEFINITELY be amending my contract to specify that "paid in full", means "paid in full"... I was shocked that they expected a $300.00 refund~ I did make her commit to a final count last night, eventhough she wanted to "get back to me". (I was/am fed up with trying to help people out and then allowing myself to be walked on because of it).

I did up mailing them a letter detailing what the cake "should" have cost before the discount and what it now would cost with the reduction in servings (which was only about $50.00...). I did mail out a check, but in the future I will make it abundantly clear in my contract that NO changes will be accepted after the THREE week mark.

I am NOT a whimp in my regular life ~ but when does the feeling of "oh, I'm going to lose this order completely and get slandered" go away? This is a business!! But it still feels like I need to bend over backwards so someone doesn't bad mouth me... icon_redface.gif

indydebi Posted 14 Oct 2009 , 9:21pm
post #15 of 15
Originally Posted by kellertur

But it still feels like I need to bend over backwards so someone doesn't bad mouth me... icon_redface.gif

It doesn't matter if you do or don't, they are still going to badmouth you.

I had a bride who had an issue with her cake. we had a nice conversation. she didnt' ask for a refund ... I offered a partial one. She accepted. I sent her a check. I thought it was a done deal and that we resolved it to the satisfaction of both of us.

Imagine my surprise when I find out she'd turned me in to the Better Business Bureau AND the Attorney General's office!! icon_surprised.gif

No big deal. I just sent the AG's office a letter with all of the emails documenting our conversation, pointed out that we had an issue, we came to an agreement, she accepted and cashed the check, THEN turned me in, so I'm not sure what her motivation is at this point. icon_confused.gif I called the BBB and they said since she wasn't really asking for anything, I didn't have to do anything and it wouldn't affect my rating at all (translation? a big waste of time on her part).

BTW, it was 3 months AFTER the wedding that she did all of this turning-in stuff. icon_confused.gif

Some people just like to play victim for as long as they can.

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