paying wedding and event vendors on time

(Image via gfpeck)

There is absolutely no question in my mind that wedding and event planning vendors should always be paid in full at least two weeks (you need time to make sure the check clears!) before the wedding or event. And you can just forget about getting that check on the day of the wedding. I have played hide and seek with many, many fathers of the bride during the reception to no avail!

Look, it’s very simple. If you’re doing an event or wedding, you have to invest a great deal of your time, energy and resources into the job long before the big day arrives. You simply cannot run the risk of never seeing the money you’ve already earned.

I do, however, recognize the flip side: by requiring payment before the big day, we take some control away from our clients. I think clients hesitate to pay in advance, because they worry something will go wrong in those last two weeks, or worse, that something will go horribly wrong during the event.

Below are three different scenarios that have actually happened to me and may have happened to you, too. I’m very curious: How would you handle with them? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

1. Even though I asked for payment two weeks before the wedding and my clients assured me that I would get paid, they still fail to produce the money on time.  But of course by this point I’ve already bought all of the materials and am ready for showtime. What should I do?

2. I think I did a great job. However, my clients inform me that they aren’t happy, and they want their money back. How should I respond?

3. As a wedding and event planner, I hired a vendor, and that vendor has been paid in full. Now my client is saying he’s unhappy with the vendor’s work. But the vendor refuses to give him his money back, and my client is holding me responsible. What’s the best course of action?

Tomorrow, I’ll reveal what I did in each of these difficult situations. I’ll also list the steps that I take to make sure that my clients always feel comfortable about paying me before their event.

Don’t forget to share your opinion in the comments!

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