Post # 1
I managed to find an affordable florist who we love, has great reviews, and has been in business for years and years. We click with them personally, think they’re super trustworthy and feel totally great about the relationship. However, apparently in terms of booking, the way they’ve always done it is to e-mail a detailed quote for the wedding (all totally flexible, and can be changed up to like 2 weeks before the wedding – fabulous), which has a note on the bottom saying that the quote becomes a contract once the deposit is recieved. Now, it’s not that I mistrust them at all (like I said, we feel 10000% confident with them), but just as a general business practice I’m uncomfortable about doing something this important (and expensive) without at least a basic “[Vendor] will provide flowers for [Client]’s wedding on [date] per attached quote, pending reciept of $[xxx] deposit, which will be put towards final cost of flowers” and then signed by both parties. Am I asking for too much? All of our other vendors have had contracts at least that explicit (if not more detailed!) I’m just worried that if something should go wrong I’d be up s**t creek without a paddle since I didn’t have a contract with their signature on it… Any legal bees want to chime in? If I want to ask for a more formal contract, how should I go about bringing it up without making it sound like I don’t trust them?
Post # 3
You’re okay. Once they deposit your check it is the best proof that shows they entered into an agreement with you and are now required to perform their obligations (giving you what is detailed in the quote).
Post # 4
If that email has all the info, pricing, dates, etc… could you print out the email (save a copy of that email) & bring it with you when you go to pay your deposit & have them sign on the email?
Otherwise, ask for a contract, just say you require a contract with every vendor.
Post # 5
Except for the venue and photographer, all of our vendors did it this way—just an emailed quote that says it becomes a contract when you send the deposit. You could certainly ask for something more formal, but legally you should be covered if the quote specifies that it becomes binding once the deposit is accepted. Just keep the cancelled checks (and pay by check or credit card so there’s a paper trail).
I think it’s fairly common for people to sign on with vendors before they know for sure what they’re asking for, which I imagine is why the practice exists. I try to send everything via email (or at least follow up phone calls with an email noting the conversation) so that I (and they) have a record of any changes along the way, though, and periodically check to be sure there’s no change in cost if we make a bigger change—also helps to make sure everyone’s on the same page. So far we’ve had no problems with this form of contracting, though.
Post # 6
If it is really important to you… ask for a signature! With all of their experience, they must have run into similiar situations. Whenever I feel uneasy, I ask for it in writing. What is the worst thing they will say? No- we will not guarantee your order? Then at least you know where you stand with them…
Post # 7
I think you’re probably okay, but if you’re uncomfortable, for sure talk to them about it! My Florist was wicked sketchy (though the flowers turned out BEAUTIFUL and on time)! She gave me a quote, we talked back and forth, and she requested I pay in full two weeks before the wedding (no deposite which I thought was weird), but everything worked out just fine! But I knew she had done a good job for a friend’s wedding, so I felt okay working with her.
If you’re uncomfortable, ask for something more concrete!
Post # 8
Since the quote itself states that it is a binding contract after the deposit, I think you’ll be okay as long as you save proof of the deposit. If not, inquire of a signed contract from the vendor?
Post # 9
Whether or nor they’re reputable and established, thats just irresponsible to enter into services with a vendor, give them money, and NOT get a signed contract with both of your signatures entailing what both of you are required to do. I wouldnt do it, anything could happen and its just not good business practices. You should get everything in writing.
Post # 10
The only vendors I’ve done this with are my make up artist and hairstylist. With everyone else I’ve signed an actual contract.
If you feel they are trustworthy then I say go for it, but if there are ANY doubts in your mind – then don’t.
Post # 11
Thanks for all the advice, ladies! I feel a lot better knowing that this is something that lots of vendors do, even if I’d never heard of it. I think I’m still going to ask for something with both of our signatures (probably just a one sentence statement like in my original post), but you all have definately calmed my nerves 🙂