Deposits – how BIG are they?
Hope you’re all going well, specifically the amazing couples that have had their wedding plans blown out of the water at this bizarre time in 2020!
Personally, I’ve had a few cancelations, 15 re-schedules for later in 2020 and 24 re-schedules for 2021 so safe to say like most people planning has been slightly less fun than walking across a bed of shucked oysters in bare feet.
This has really had me thinking about the concepts of deposits for celebrants. I listen to different opinions about giving deposits back, keeping them for a re-scheduled date, or just keeping them all together.
Developing a watertight legally binding service contract seems to be the desired strategy. Small print that nobody reads and definitely doesn’t expect to have thrown at them. I understand the concept of protecting your business but using couples deposits, not refunding them or taking large deposits seems unfair to me.
I don’t usually take deposits or if I do they are much smaller – to me, it should be a pledge or small instalment for a future purchase of being married by me – somewhere around 10% seems fair. Full payment on or before the actual wedding date is essential for celebrants, as they must lodge the paperwork after the ceremony. I’ve found that by not taking deposits it helps couples save for their day – it’s refreshing for the couple as many suppliers have their hand out for up to 100% of the fee. The downside or cost for me is that less than 5% of couples don’t get married and the date becomes available. Ultimately, you will get paid when you do the job – this seems fair to me.
So couples, don’t be afraid to negotiate the deposit amount on your terms. If your Celebrant wants 50% on booking and the remainder two months out from ceremony date, you can suggest your own terms – 10% now & the remainder one week prior to the ceremony. Remember you’re the client. You’re the one paying for the service. The celebrant has developed their own service contract but you are the customer and you have choices – be wise & learn.
Outside of celebrancy I think this is worth thinking about for every deposit we pay – deposits should be a pledge or small portion of the future event – why have they become so BIG?
If you enjoyed this blog post, please share it with a friend.