This is a long story, but I'm so mad I could scream!
A couple of months ago, a lady who works in my building booked me for last weekend to make a graduation cake for her nephew. Then about a month later, she asked if I could also make "a couple of small birthday cakes" for the same day for her family, as they wanted to celebrate the birthdays at the same time. I agreed.
After repeatedly asking, I finally got her to decide on what she wanted last Wednesday, three days before the event. As it turned out, in addition to the 1/2 sheet graduation cake, she wanted three 11x15 birthday cakes and had very specific ideas about what she wanted on them. I e-mailed her, confirming all the details and listing the price for each cake. I gave her all of my contact phone numbers and asked her if she would like me to deliver them, since their party was being held on Saturday at a venue only a couple of miles from my house. She said she'd pick them up. OK, whatever.
On Thursday I tried to get her to commit to a time to pick up the cakes. She didn't know. On Friday, I couldn't track her down. Friday night I stayed up until 3 AM making her 4 very nice cakes. Saturday Noon rolls around and I still haven't heard from her. Her phone number is unlisted so I can't contact her. Grrr.
Finally at 5 PM (her party started at 6:00), I still hadn't heard from her so I loaded up the cakes and took them to the party, where her entire family was decorating the hall. Her sister was there (mother of the graduate) and called her sister (the one who ordered the cake). She asked if it would be ok if the sister brought the money to work on Tuesday (monday holiday). I was ticked, but I agreed.
So on Tuesday, I go to her office to collect and, you guessed it, she's on vacation. So today (Wednesday) I go to her office to collect, and she tells me her sister has the money. What? That's odd because on Saturday the sister said YOU had the money.
So, it's been nearly a week since I delivered 4 beautifully decorated cakes and I still haven't been paid.
I am officially never doing a cake for someone that I don't know very, very well. This is just a hobby for me anyway and I truly enjoy doing cakes for family and close friends (usually I give these away or do them at cost).
Why are people so RUDE?
I'm sorry to hear that. Sounds like the run around. Tell her that you made the arrangements with her, not her sister, hand her an itemized bill, and tell her that you usually expect payment before the event.
Rude is not the word. There are more choice descriptions.
That's why I'll never make a cake until I've already been fully paid. EVER
I am so sorry to hear that your were ripped off and swindled by this very uncivilized individual ... to say the least !! I am not in the cake business, but I can sympathize with you. That is just so wrong of people to do that.
How much does she owe you ? keep asking her, everyday. Until she gets annoyed and irritated that she will pay you, although you don't really have to do that if she has any shame, she should have paid you then. You are not the sucker, she is !!
But lesson learn, don't do it without payment. No money, no cake.. no can do ! Take care.
sorry to hear that!! but i don't think i would stop doing cakes for those I don't know very well....I might not do them for that particular person anymore and I'd just make sure to get payment before the cake leaves your hands. your cakes were wonderful!! they deserve to be shared w/others!!
Thanks everyone, I'm feeling better about the situation, but I'm still upset.
I plan to be standing at her desk at 8:00 AM tomorrow waiting for payment. If she says she doesn't have it -- again -- I'm going to tell her that she needs to go to the bank at lunch and have the money to me by 1:00.
Sheesh. The NERVE of some people!
I had a similar experince this weekend. The person could not follow my directions to my home to pick up the cake and just decided that since she was lost she would leave the cake altogether. I called her and she said that since she did not actually get the cake, I will not be getting payment. Big, lesson learnt.......no cake without payment at least a day before.
Sorry this happened to you though.....
This seems to be happening a lot lately. I see some things in your story that you did correctly and some policies you need to change.
What you did correctly is email her everything you agreed on. This is sort of a written agreement between the two parties. However, you should really do this in person and have her sign off on it if you want it to be official.
The second thing you need to change is either a down payment and paid in full three days before the event or pay now policy. You should never bake a cake without full payment.
Even though this sounds like a home business, it is still that, a business. People don't go to Wal-mart and pay them three days later for items off the shelf today. The ones that are not honest will immediately take advantage of your lax policies, so I would change them to prevent this.
People like that never seem to think that the "rules" apply to them. It's never their fault, It's never their responsibility,...
Hope you get your money from her. Keep hounding her until you get it!
The nerve of some people!!! It's not like she's never going to see you again even, she KNOWS you work there and she's going to run into you and your going to want your money. I just can't understand some people's way of thinking! Even if she didn't work in the same building, I can't figure why she would think anyone would do all of that work for FREE and not expect payment! I am MAD for you to. I sure hope you end up getting your money
Oh how aggravating!! I would demand a cash payment from her, because judging from her behavior so far, I wouldn't trust her to give you a good check either! If she insists on a check, I'd take it directly to her bank to cash it straight out of her account to make sure you get your money.
I'm with prettycake, I'd ask her every day for the money until she pays you and I'd document everything! I'd give her a time frame, say by 5:00 friday (almost a week after the event). If she hasn't paid you by then, I'd draw up some type of document stating you were taking her to small claims court. That should let her know that you are serious about wanting your money (that you deserve!).
That really makes me mad too! I can't believe someone would have the gall to be so rude (and rude is a VERY nice way of saying what I think of people like that!).
Good luck! Keep us posted.
wow! I'm so sorry to hear this! I mean, you even made 3 extra cakes for her.
I think you should tell her that SHE'S the one that ordered the cakes, she's the one that should pay.
It would be hard for me to not ask her "why haven't you paid yet?.....I even did 3 large cakes on such short notice for you!"
I wouldn't stop making cakes, but I wouldn't ever make her or her family a cake again.
Good Luck getting your money and let us know what you do and what happens!
What nerve! I'm so sorry to hear about your ordeal.
You made sure she had her cakes on time, but she has, of yet, not paid you. If she still insists that her sister has the money, tell her to get the money from her sister and pay you. In cash.
If this women still hasn't paid you, don't waste too much more time on trying to collect your money from her. Take her to small claims court. And if ANYONE from her family dares to ask you to do a cake for them, tell them your calendar is full.
I'm interested in knowing what happens. Take care!!!
Thanks for all your support and advice everyone, I really appreciate you letting me vent!
It was comical because when I walked in the front door to the building this morning she just happened to be walking by. That threw her for a loop! She mumbled something about going to get my money at lunch because she didn't have time to go to her sister's house last night.
So I asked her what time she usually goes to lunch, and she said Noon. Then I told her that I'll just hold off going to lunch until she gets back (didn't bother to tell her I usually take a late lunch anyway) so that I can go to the bank over my break.
Right now it's 10 minutes to 1:00. I'm giving her until 10 minutes after 1:00 and if she hasn't shown up, I'm going to her office. Until now I've chosen not to embarrass her in front of her coworkers and have been quiet when talking to her about this. But even though I'm not a very confrontational type of person, if she doesn't pay me today, her coworkers are going to get an earful!
How frustrating! I hope you won't allow her to take advantage of you. Keep hounding her till you get your money. Don't give up. You had an agreement with her, not her sister or anyone else.
Did you ever ask her why she didn't come to pick up the cakes?
Was there a change in her cake plans before the pick up date?
Good luck, and let us know what happens.
I'm sorry...I had to add something that's been bothering me about your whole problem with this lady. Isn't it the most frustrating thing in the world trying to get money that is owed to you? Doesn't she feel like the biggest loser ever making you come to her??? What is people's problems? And yes, why didn't she ever come and pick up the cakes like she planned to?
Good luck today. Don't leave without your money.
Wow! I am continually amazed at how rude some people can be. Someone already said this, but do they think they could get away with something like that at a regular bakery???! Keep persisting, that's a lot of cake to still be unpaid for.
I am so soory to hear what happened to you. But I want to know what happed next. Fill us in...
This is why I started using contracts - I had to do a double half sheet for a customer a few weeks ago and I didn't even get paid until I delivered it. I told her (she ordered 2 cakes from me, this one is the same except bigger) that I must have a deposit when signing the contract and I must be paid in full 2 weeks prior to the event. Granted, it's just a bridal shower cake, but still. My time (and gas) spent driving around to purchase supplies and delivery are definitely not free then. She balked about the price before the first cake...so the second time around, I drew it all up and she signed...and paid. This way, she can't back out of it.
I'm really sorry for what happened - some people are so unbelievable! If she doesn't pay you by tomorrow, take her to court.
Oh noooo! It sounds to me like she never meant to pay for the cakes in the first place. I bet she didn't expect you to drop them off either. She knows there is no way out of this and I would damn sure make sure she pays! I'm getting mad for you just writing this . She knows she's in the wrong so what's she gonna do get an attitude about it. I would make sure after you get your money that she knows you don't need her business in the future. Good luck and keep us posted about what happened.
I'm like all the rest of the member comments. I do NOT start a cake until I have a min of 1/2 of the money. If it's a referral, I have to have all the $$ before I start the cake. Even family and friends have to have at least half of the $$ before I start.
Please let us all know if you got your money. I know i'm anxious to know.
Yes I am curious if she ever got paid for this one.
Okay ...Sammy-2002..we're on the edges of our seats now!!! WHAT HAPPENED???!!?
So??? I'm dying to know what happened Friday? I guess I'm lucky that I've always gotten paid. I did have someone forget to pick up a cake on the way out of town. So I couldn't get a hold of them and was waiting to leave myself. Finally his sister called me and was on the way as well. She paid me and took the cake. I have never done a cake for them again. But the nerve of that lady! Good luck!!
OK, I listen to Paul Harvey on the radio, and I want to know the REST OF THE STORY! What happened????????
I'm waiting too!
Wow that's awful! But I'm glad I read your post because I'm just starting my business and I can learn from your story to always get money upfront and to sign a contract. Best of luck with getting the money!
lol got us all hanging on the edge wanting to know what happened...