Post # 1
Oooook. So. Here’s the deal.
My DH and I decided to throw a retirement party over Christmas break for his parents and we included his sister to help us out. When we talked to her she agreed to contribute 1/3 to the party. We also went in on a $400 gift for her parents for Christmas (that I bought…) and she owes us a third for that as well.
She said she would call us to get the totals and write us a check.
Well is January 8th and she hasn’t made ANY attempt to contact us. And my DH isn’t making any effort either. I think he’s already convinced himself that she’s not going to pay (seems to be a habit of hers.)
Frankly, I’m pretty annoyed. If she couldn’t afford to help I feel like she shouldn’t have agreed to bother to help us. We paid for everything EVERYTHING for the party and I know she’s not broke since she can apparently afford a personal trainer and a nutritionist.
I keep asking him if he sent her a total yet or talked to her and he’s really dragging his feet. This is a guy that is a major MAJOR penny pincher. He knows where every dime goes and he gets annoyed when his accounts are off. And yes I know this is his sister but I just don’t get why he wouldn’t at least make some attempt to get the money from her. It’s not $100. This is a solid chunk of change!
So any advice???
Post # 3
@the_newlymintedmrs-s17: you can contact her yourself?
If you guys give presents to each other, evey time it’s christmas or her birhtday she can get a voucher that says you now owe us 1,4000, not 1350 etc, until it’s paid off Feel free to add interest through the years.
Post # 4
ok if it was christmas break its been what, a few weeks? so a while, but still not in the realms of ridiculous yet. if it were me, id wait a few weeks then send her a message myself
Post # 5
@Atalanta: I would contact her, but she and I can get a little… um snippy… at each other so I’d rather not be that person. Ha. I like the voucher system. Gets me out of buying her gifts for about 10 years ;-p
@newname_99: No its not in the realm of ridiculousness yet but when I ask my husband if he’s heard from her I get “No and I won’t. She’s not going to pay us.” So its like he’s already set on her not paying. She’s done this before unfortunately, just not on this large of a scale
Post # 6
Even if you don’t get along, I would still contact her, especially if your husband won’t. It’s a substantial amount of money.
Post # 7
@the_newlymintedmrs-s17: One of you should send her a friendly, casual e-mail saying that her share of the party came to X, her share of the gift came to X, total comes to X.
She owes you the money but honestly, in future, if you decide you want to throw a party or give a gift to someone, do it yourselves or offer others to opt in but get the money up front.
This may be an expensive lesson. She may just send you a check. But if she doesn’t – you both have to determine how far you’re willing to go to collect the debt. Sounds like your FI isn’t willing to go too far. My advise is to maybe draft a nice email and ask him to send it or allow you to send it. She’ll either honor her promise or she won’t. If she doesn’t, you can decide to escalate or let it go. If you let it go, just take it as notice to never trust her with money issues in the future.
Post # 8
I am very sorry. I do want to ask, without being snarky, how this developed. Maybe SIL didnt expect this to run more than a couple hunder dollars. I dont know how you handled it, but if I ask someone to go in on a party with me, I discuss budget up front. For my mom’s retirment party, we did hot dogs and hamburgers in my back yard.
Post # 9
@the_newlymintedmrs-s17: When giving money to family, for the sake of everyone’s sanity, only give what you can afford and never expect it back. Always look at that money as being gone for good even if they promise up and down to repay it. If someone cannot cover their share of the cost of a combined gift until a later date, assume that date will never come. Do not do combined gifts in the future.
Basically, you are right now within your rights to remind her, but ultimately, that’s $1,500 you will most likely never see and that you will need to forgive and forget.
Post # 10
@MsW-to-MrsM: This. Never loan money to someone if you can’t afford to lose it.
That being said…contact her and say, “Hey Jalisah, since you owe us $1500, can you set up a payment plan? You can send us a check for $150 for the next ten pay periods, and that will settle the amount.” Then see what she says…see if she does it…and if she doesn’t…well, lesson learned.
Post # 11
@Zhabeego: +1, I think you hit it on the nose.
Post # 12
I am not sure what’s stopping you from contacting her yourself? You are family after all.
Post # 13
Well I don’t think this really counts as a loan. But that’s me. I suppose I was raised rather differently in the fact that I never said “yes” to agreeing to pay for a thing or go in on a gift without knowing for sure I could afford said gift/party etc. Rest assured I will never make this mistake again. It’s not that we don’t have the money but we are expecting a baby in July and you would think that my SIL would be… I dunno honest and honorable about paying for a fair share of a party that I organized for her parents? I’m sure I’ll get over the fact that I am probably not seeing a penny out of her but I think I’m justified to be a bit annoyed if not a little pissed.
I talked to my husband again tonight about it and asked if I should contact her and he said he’s not comfortable with that because he says its his sister and he’ll handle it. So whatever that means. My SIL and I aren’t exactly peas in a pod and I think my husband thinks it would be better coming from him than from me.
Post # 14
@the_newlymintedmrs-s17: Personally, I would just take my FI’s cell phone and text her myself. I also know that he wouldn’t be mad, though. We use each others phones all the time.
Post # 15
@Zhabeego: +1. There’s nothing wrong with a follow up email or phine call if done in a relaxed, matter of fact way, as if you are just reviewing the final totals.
I agree with OP’s H that he’s the one who should handle it, NOT OP.
Post # 16
I agree that the OP shouldn’t contact SIL, this is something her FI should do. And he does need to do it. I’m also annoyed that the FI let this money be spent without letting the OP know that he never expected to be paid back. I have a feeling OP wouldn’t have allowed this to get to $1500 had she known that.