Payment Schedule

Business By Tellis12 Updated 29 Jan 2010 , 7:20pm by Mabma80

Tellis12 Posted 28 Jan 2010 , 6:47pm
post #1 of 10

Alas, yet another cry for help today!

I'm just starting to book weddings and I'm trying to work out all the details and kinks. Right now I charge a $50 non-refundable deposit to book the date. After that I tell my brides that everything else is due 30 days before their date, when we finalize the design and number of servings. I realize this might be a bit far out but 30 days is what it is right now.

Here are my questions:
I'd like to have some sort of a payment schedule so that I don't have them cancel 45 days before their wedding and I only have their $50 left, especially if I had to turn down another wedding after I booked theirs. I'd like to do a percentage of their total for their deposit, and collect the rest of their payments on some sort of schedule. The problem is that only a couple of my brides have ever had an exact idea of what they want their cake to look like and they frequently have only a vague number of servings they want. How do I work this out and what kind of payment/refund for cancellation schedule should I work on?

Thanks so much for all the invaluable advice. I appreciate it so so much!

9 replies
prterrell Posted 28 Jan 2010 , 7:32pm
post #2 of 10

Charge a 50% non-refundable deposit.

costumeczar Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 12:48am
post #3 of 10

I've also seen some people do a 30%-30%-40% payment schedule, with the last payment due three weeks out or thereabouts. There were different refund policies for each payment if they did cancel, something like "no refunds on payments received more than a month prior to the date."

cakesbycathy Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 1:08am
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by prterrell

Charge a 50% non-refundable deposit.




That's what I do.

leah_s Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 2:05am
post #5 of 10

I do 25% non-refundable for any reason retainer, remainder due 21 days prior.

Tellis12 Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 2:40am
post #6 of 10

If the bride doesn't have an exact number of servings or style, do you just estimate?

leah_s Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 2:42am
post #7 of 10

At the consultation, we have to have an estimated number. I generally use 75% of invited. And during the consultation, I make sketches and the bride picks the cake design.

indydebi Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 3:10am
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakesbycathy

Quote:
Originally Posted by prterrell

Charge a 50% non-refundable deposit.



That's what I do.




That's what I did too. And since I did catering, this meant they were forking over a thousand or more dollars that was totally non-refundable.

My balance was due 2 weeks prior, but I know many vendors (cake, catering and non-food) who have a 30 day deadline.

prterrell Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 4:09am
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tellis12

If the bride doesn't have an exact number of servings or style, do you just estimate?




Both of these must be decided in order to book.

Mabma80 Posted 29 Jan 2010 , 7:20pm
post #10 of 10

When I was getting married(2004), I had to put down 50% of the total price of the cake as a deposit and to hold the date. I HAD to have an estimated count of people (the final count was required one month before), and the design down.
The remainder of the total amount, was due two weeks before the wedding date. I'm pretty sure that's what it was. That's what I'm going to do once I get into the wedding cake business part.

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