I just thought I would share this in hopes that it would possibly keep this from happening to you:
I just did a very last minute wedding cake for a woman that works for us...it was for her daughter. She called me on Saturday afternoon and wanted it for the following Saturday morning. I said yes and we agreed on a price. Everything good so far.
My dad was catering the reception and cutting the cake for the weddding so I told her to give the check to my dad since she was giving him one that day anyway.
Usually our policy is a deposit when the cake is ordered and the balance due 1-2 weeks before the event, but stupidly I thought that since we knew her and it was such short notice that a check that day would be fine.WRONG!!
I went to deposit her checks(for the cake and the catering) the following Monday but she calls to say that they are no good(gave some weird story about her sister stealing her money) and that she would have the money by Wednesday(yesterday) - Did we hear from her? NO!
This is my word of advice just in case anyone wanted any:
Unless they are immediate family always get the payment BEFORE the wedding date. ALWAYS
Sorry for the long rant...just had to get it off my chest
i'm sorry this happened to you... i, unfortnately am a softy when it comes to these things... and i should know better.. thanks for the advice!
I'm very sorry that you are going through this. Hopefully she will come through for you.
My advice to you -- go to her bank on Friday morning as early as possible. Most people have paychecks and etc. deposited on Fridays. This is just my experience from my job. If there is no funds try Friday afternoon or Saturday morning.
I'm a complete moron when it comes to financial stuff, but can't you still deposit and she'll just end up with the overcharges? It may not be the nicest thing (sticking her the over draft charges), but she wasn't nice to you.
Sorry for your bad luck. Some times we have to learn the hard way. I know thats how I learn things. Man, could I tell you some stories, but lets just say, I know your pain.( and ANGER).
That's too bad! I hope it works out for you.
As for the overdraft charges - check with your bank - sometimes they charge you a fee too if a check bounces that you've deposited
Thanks guys...I've been through bad checks before thats why we changed the policy to getting the money beforehand. Unfortunately it happens in any line of business. We will recover the money at some point, but I guess I just wanted to offer some advice from someone who has been down this road too many times.
I often see posts about advice on contracts and prices, etc.. and wanted to share this in case it made anyone think twice about trusting someone at their word for payment.
Check your bank. Some will also charge YOU a small fee for prossessing.
If possible GO to her bank Dont depo into yours. She might have the $ in the account and just told you that for the sake of delaying payment. SOME banks will tell you if you call if the funds are available at that very second. Might change by the time you get to them . Just call them. All they can do is say no. At least no gas is wasted then.
I am also very sorry that you are having to go through this. Since this person works for you, you may have the upper hand in this situation. I don't know what type of work she does, but if you're paying her, consider withholding the amount she owes you from her next paycheck! Unfortunately, some people are quick to take advantage of people they are close to or know well. I hope you get it resolved quickly though.
She actually doesn't have the money in the account and I believe she knew this when she wrote the check.
She comes in and cleans for us a couple of times a week, but I don't think that's going to be the case anymore.
The bank told us if we deposit the checks and they don't clear through her account they will charge us $5
Good Luck with this. I once did a wedding cake and didn't charge a deposit, and on the day of the wedding, the brides mother told me that she didn't have the money for the cake, and told me that it would be like a week or two, first so shocked I thought well what choice do I have, but then I got to thinking about it and decided that I wouldn't take it, that it was her daughters wedding and that she wouldn't let her do without a cake, so I called her back and before I could say anything she told me that the money would be there at the reception. Let's just say she sent it by someone else, and she didn't arrive at the reception until after I'd left. Lesson well learned. I now have a 1/2 down deposit before hand, and I get the rest at the time of delivery, as I wouldn't want to ask for it in advance and then them think that I'm trying to get them and not show up with their cake.
How sad! You even posted for ideas for the cake so you could make it special for them as they didn't have a lot of money even for the wedding. After all the effort you put into it! How very, very sad....
mistygaildunn;I'm glad you got paid for the cake...I don't know what makes people think that we can make their cake for them and then we just have to wait until they are good and ready to pay us.
unfortunately for me collecting the payment upon delivery didn't do me any good seeing as the check is no good...I just wanted to give people a different perspective on wedding cake payment policies thinking that if it at least saves one person from dealing with this then it is worth the post
tripletmom: What's even worse is that my dad gave her a big discount on the catering and he even stayed and served the food and cut the cake and she just feels like its not that important to pay us.
This is a major lesson learned for me and just one more reason I'm glad to be done with the wedding cakes for awhile
That is so awful for you to have to go thru this. I had one that bounced (was only a shower cake, but still) and I EVENTUALLY got paid, but man, it took me 2 months to finally get payment from this woman. So I understand your pain!! Just makes you want to curse!!
Wow that's messed up....
I only take checks from local banks where I can have it cashed at THEIR bank so at least if it bounces I won't get charged any fees.
I am glad I take Paypal on my website now, it helps reduce some of the risk as people love to pay via credit card.
Maybe it's just me, but I wouldn't make the cake or wouldn't finish it. If a customer doesn't make good on payment, then they don't get product. That's the reason for deposits in the first place, to make sure you are covered in some way.
You may think about requiring a cash deposit on short orders from now on.
If you took out a loan at a bank and didn't pay it, they wouldn't loan you money anymore, so there's not much difference.
If I were you I would check with the police what she did was illegal. I would contact her and tell her that you have x amount of time like 48 hrs for cash payment then if she does not deliver tell her you are calling the police and do so.
I got stood up on a cake recently so I added Paypal to my website and I now require deposits on EVERY cake, or prepayment, customer's choice. Even if its just for a birthday cake.
Well I know the pain. I did something really retarded recently. I took a check from a girl for a shower cake and , as I was out one day and needed some cash and her credit union was close by and I remembered having it on me I decided to stop in and cash it instead of going to my bank. It not only wasn't good, but her credit union must have been looking out for her, cuz it was one of those fancy shmancy deals where you don't really even SEE anyone you pick up a phone and a teller is behind that wall somewhere but you see her on a tv screen and they send the transaction thru a chute like the one @ a drive-thru. Anyway they sent my drivers license back and said that there were no funds available and they said .."Oh we will just hang onto the check." Well..I haven't been in business that long and wasn't thinking much about it. Then I realized as I walked out...without the check what can I do? NOTHING...Oh well. I won't do that again!
Cakeman66: I had already made the cake and it was delivered...she gave us a check right then. It just wasn't any good.
This is the exact reason I wanted to post what happened...so maybe when people here see this it will give them ideas about how they want to handle payments.
I won't be doing anymore wedding cakes for awhile so its not really going to be a big issue for me anymore, but i thought maybe it would help someone else out. I wanted to also point out that just because we might know the person ordering doesn't mean they are going to do the right thing.
Kayday: I can't believe they kept the check...sometimes people are just dishonest and its hard for us to think that people would do stuff like this because we never would, but it happens way too often
I didn't notice the part about it already happening, I thought it was this Saturday...
Your last line says it all. We had a "friend" do some housework for us, because she needed the money. Things started dis-appearing. We knew it wasn't us mis-aplacing things. Needless to say, when we found out it was her that took my Wife's 10 year anniversary watch, she was no longer a friend.
I am sorry to hear this happened to you. I hope it all works out.
I am sorry that this has happened to you. Hopefully they will end up doing what is right - paying you the money you deserve. As a side note, I would like to add that here in Kansas, if you do not post a sign in plain view for your customers, that states you will charge a fee for a bounced check (max here is $30), you are not able to charge that fee. I don't know if that is a state regulation or a federal one. It is an interesting point to check into though for anyone wanting to open a "shop".
ge978, Did she stiff your dad too? I know it's a hassle, but you might consider small claims court.
I'm sorry this happened to you, especially on a wedding cake. Thanks for sharing this story, it's a good lesson for us all. I probably would have done the same thing and trusted this gal. Hope it works out in your favor in the end. I wouldn't let it go just yet!
I'm sorry for your experience but I would file a small claims/civil suit for your money if she doesn't pay! You deserve that to start with (supplies and labor), let alone for all the aggravation added to it.
wendysue: Yes, she stiffed my dad also for the catering he did. She apparently thought it was okay to write a bad check and then make us wait until its good.
For those who take a deposit and then accept the rest at delivery, I would seriously think about whether you want to take a check or not. Maybe when they order let them know if they wait to pay the day of the event only certified checks or cash will be accepted, but you will take a check up until 1-2 weeks before delivery. Just a suggestion
The sad thing is that sometimes the more you bend over backwards for someone the more they take advantage of you.
If she stiffed you both, then chances are it's not the first time she's done this to anyone. I'd seriously call the poilce today. Because writing a check on an account without money, or a closed account is fraud. No matter how you slice it. (pun intended)
If it's only a $5 charge for NSF, I'd try cashing that check a few times. You know her and know where she lives. I'd take her to small claims court. Here it is cheap to file in small claims court.
Well I would go ahead and put the checks in the bank!! Here in Canada the only NSF charges that are incurred is to the person who wrote the checks! The banks here or at least anytime I have dealt with a bank here, the NSF charges falls completely on the person who wrote it.It is not your problem that she had her money or stolen or whatever her story was...You supplied the cake and your Dad the food so I would say "Tough Luck to you" The banks here will notify you that the cheque went NSF but I don't believe they make you out on the funds! I could be wrong though...Don't completely quote me on that anyway..I feel bad for you!! Hope you end up getting the money!!