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Client Didn't Pay!!!

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone, I'm a cake central newbie, what's up?

 

So, I'm really frustrated right now .... I made a cake for a client, went terribly wrong first of all, had to make 3 batches of MMF and it just wasn't working out for me yesterday so I went out and bought fondant for the cake. Two tiers, antler cake toppers, huge realistic small mouth bass on the bottom tier. $70 deposit. I wouldn't even break even with this order IF she paid me in full because of the errors with my fondant. She paid me the deposit a few weeks ago, today when she came to pick up the cake she said she was sorry that she didn't have cash and told me she was sending the money by interac e-transfer as we spoke and even asked me what I wanted the secret question and answer to be. She left with the cake (and the rest of her order, 1 dozen cupcakes) and I trusted that she did send the transfer ... She works for the government (I could tell by her e-mail signatures from her work email) and we have mutual friends, though we have never met, so idiot me trusted her. The party is today at 5, so I'm sure she's busy (it's a surprise party) but I'm sure that she could have noticed my email asking about the transfer. What on earth do I do? I let her know that the transfer was not yet received in the email. I don't think it's an interac problem, as I got a transfer earlier today within 30 minutes of the client sending it. I need that money tomorrow morning, I was counting on her payment. UGH, I know that I shouldn't be making a cake without full payment but having the client pay for the rest of the cake when they come and pick it up has been okay so far and has never given me a problem.

 

Any suggestions? For the future, I think I learned my lesson, I just need some advice on how to deal with this client in particular. Do I keep bugging her for the money until I get it? Or do I call her? (I only have her work phone number).

post #2 of 22
I always make people sign a contract, pay a deposit and have the remainder due within two weeks prior to the event, also when final changes can be made. That's more for cakes over $200. I won't make a cake until its paid for, because of situations like this-I don't care who it is. If you do let them pay at pickup I would only accept cash, I simply wouldn't leave the cake with them.

This is a difficult way to learn a lesson, I'm sorry this happened to you! I don't know anything about your payment system, is there a 1-800 number or customer service place? If you think that's the issue I'd check with them first, but it's probably not. I would send an invoice or call her. Do you have anything besides an email and work number? Do you have a contract? You should always get address, home and cell phones, email as much contact info as possible.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Yes I did have her sign a contract but she only included her work number on the contract.. Her order was very last minute so she was literally paying me my deposit a few days ago.. Im going to send another email icon_sad.gif
post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 

She just sent an e-mail saying "odd. I'll try again" ... hope it works, I think I bothered her. Won't be getting any more orders from this one, that's for sure. Pity, she was good with creative licensing.

post #5 of 22
I wouldn't worry about bothering her. It is very much within your rights to question her when you haven't received payment she claimed to have sent.
post #6 of 22
She owes you money and she knows it. Why are you even worried that you might be bothering her?
post #7 of 22
Maybe she really did try to pay you the first time, and something went wonky and it didn't go through. Unless there was more to the last email, I don't see what she said as seeming like it bothered her. She thought payment not going through was odd, & she'd try again.
Don't writer her off yet. Unless there's more to the story, this could be a simple misunderstanding. Hopefully you get your money either way.
post #8 of 22
Yes, you are right to question why you didn't get your payment. Hopefully it's just a mix-up, she seemed to reply quickly. I'm not sure how others collect payment but I would insist on more info in the future as well as payment in full before pick up or drop off date. People are typically in a rush or not always present when the actual cake comes.
post #9 of 22
Thread Starter 

Good news! It was just a mix up after all. I received my payment. Sorry guys, just had a little panic attack because I thought I'd made my first business blunder in regards to payment!! Thank you for all of the advice, I will be sure to keep it in mind for any other orders that come my way.

post #10 of 22
That's good! Seriously consider some of the other tips about altering your contact or payment arrangements so you won't have to worry or go through this again icon_wink.gif
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 

I will for sure, I've already added a new clause to my contract.

post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by CakeAddict95 View Post

I will for sure, I've already added a new clause to my contract.
Of which one says payment is due in full at least 2 weeks prior to event, yes? icon_wink.gif
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post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 

Yes, but sadly my clients always seem to be the last minute type - with endless suggestions that they should book early, offering discounts and such, they're still asking "can I have a cake for this Saturday?" Um. No. You can't. Well, yeah. I guess you can. What do you want? "A ten tier cake covered in roses and peonies and -" Goodbye.

post #14 of 22
I'd take control of that sooner than later. Nothing wrong with last minute if you can do it, but they should be willing to drop what they're doing and pay you immediately if they want that cake. Last minute and they get to pay at delivery? Oh heck no. If they can't put the effort out to pay you ahead, then they don't deserve your services. Period.
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post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 

Haha thank you. You have a very good point! I'll definitely keep that in mind. Maybe last minute orders have to pay in full instead of a deposit?

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