Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Safeguarding Yourself When Hiring Vendors

After alot of chatter in the industry about a local vendor (which will remain nameless), I decided that I wanted to write about how to safeguard yourself when hiring your vendors.

Tip #1: Be suspicious of "pay in full" opportunities. I know that alot of vendors offer some kind of discount for paying in full, because it cuts back on bookkeeping time, which allows them to book more events, but you need to weigh out your options. If you pay significantly prior to services rendered, what happens if they go out of business? Luckily, these days alot of credit card companies can "get your money back," but if you paid by check, then you are in for a long journey to get it back.

Tip #2: When paying, have a paper trail. Either pay by credit card or check, never pay with cash! And, be sure to get a receipt! You don't want your vendor asking for a balance the day of your wedding when you paid them weeks before. Have the paperwork to back it up.

Tip #3: You should be able to contact your vendor throughout the planning process. Sure, if your wedding is a year away, you may not get that immediate response to an e-mail, but your vendor should always welcome your questions, concerns, etc. throughout your planning.

Tip #4: If it's too good to be true, it probably is. The vendor that you hire should be within the middle of the different quotes that you received. Never higher the cheapest vendor. You will get what you pay for, or they'll tack on all of those additional fees (service charge, delivery fee, etc.) which could total much more than you were originally quoted. When you hire a vendor, it should be because of the "value" that they can offer you, not about how cheap it is.

Tip #5: Get everything in writing. In addition to a contract that outlines everything in detail - responsiblities, duties, etc., you must also get any additional information in writing. If there has been a change or additional duties or responsibilites added to the original scope of work, get an addendum to your contract outlining these items in detail.

Let us recommend the best vendors in the area, give us a call at 813-426-5280 or e-mail us at

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