My venue jacked up their prices and now we're stuck – ADVICE!

posted 9 months ago in Venue
Post # 31
246 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2019

I also booked my venue 2 years out (yay for early planners!) and I had a meeting with a venue that told me that I would have to pay more if their prices increased between the signing of the contract and my wedding date. I noped right out of that appointment. If I’m not locked into a price, I’m not signing their contract.

Luckily, with the venue we did choose, we not only got amazing discounts for booking early, but we were 100% locked into the price as listed when we signed. They have been very open and honest about additional fees, and all are reasonable in my opinion. 

First, I would read your contract and see if it states anything about pricing increases. They may just be assuming couples aren’t reading their contracts so they can up their prices without following the contract. Secondly, get a meeting with them and tell them a 30% increase is way too much, and see if you can negotiate that down. I think a 5% increase due to inflation is much more normal, as other posters have stated.

I’m sorry you’re dealing with this, I would be so enraged if a vendor tried to do that to me. 

Post # 32
1259 posts
Bumble bee

That sounds rather odd. I can understand if there was no deposit paid or minimal deposit paid, but with $7000 deposit, wouldn’t the price be locked in? It doesn’t sound like a fair contract. Do you have consumer protection agencies and ombudsmen in your country / area that deal with unfair practices like this? I would certainly speak to authorities.

Post # 34
208 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2019 - Mountains

Yes you have bargaining chips “…were told (in writing but not on the contract) that it would be in line with previous increases which were around the 3-5% mark.” While it may not be in the contract, if you have that in emails that’s leverage for sure.

Make sure that the new contract is in line with that email. The fact that they are willing to work with you is a good sign.

Post # 35
1036 posts
Bumble bee

If they said to expect up to a 5% increase I would probably offer that as a compromise. 

Post # 36
2413 posts
Buzzing bee

I’d also try to get something in writing (preferably in the contract) about not jacking up the price again by several thousand dollars in January 2020.

I think you should be able to use the emails as leverage, although I’m certainly not an attorney.

Post # 37
1887 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

Emma5 :  

Use the 3-5% you have in writing. I’d counter with 3% then be willing to compromise at 5%. Your argument is that was the information provided to you on which you reasonable relied on when you signed the agreement. 

Post # 38
1648 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Your biggest bargaining chips:

– You have something in writing 

– You can leave a really bad review

– You can decrease your headcount completely (not ideal, but if the money means that much to me, I’d do it) and get the costs to come back down.

Stay strong. 

Post # 39
633 posts
Busy bee

Emma5 :  Honestly, your best bargaining chip of last resort is that it’s rather likely that what they are currently trying to charge you is not legally enforceable.

Whether you actually want to go down that road is another matter, of course. 

Post # 40
5566 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

The emails saying the 3-5% price increase should supplement your contract. I wouldn’t pay anything over 5% if that is what you have in writing.

Post # 41
1259 posts
Bumble bee

I would tell them matter of factly that the email constitutes part of the agreement and forms the basis of your decision to sign the contract AND pay a non-refundable deposit to such a significant amount. Ask them to formalise in the new contract an increase within the 3-5% as agreed. 

If they come back asking for more than that, I’ll be telling them I’m going to the authority (whoever that might be for you) to resolve this issue on the basis that they provided misleading disclosure / information to deceive you into signing a contract and pay a large non-refundable deposit.

Post # 42
1116 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2019 - USA

Daisy_Mae :  Sephiroth :  Agree. OP, you should figure out exactly what the contract says about price increases and/or limitations to your quoted price. Otherwise you might be hosed.

Post # 43
7419 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

Emma5 :  as others have said, I would use the e-mail stating the likely increase to try to bring the price down. If that didn’t work, I personally would walk away from the $7k deposit as I wouldn’t want to continue working with a company like that. I know that’s a a lot of money to lose but in the end, the $7k deposit vs. the extra $6k you are forced to spend comes out to a $1k loss. Then, I would write reviews all over the place about how they run their business.

Post # 44
2413 posts
Buzzing bee

MrsBeck has some good points.  I bet the $7000 deposit you’d lose is probably still less than the various additional fees and price increases they may try to saddle you with.

also… you can’t be the only bride/customer that the venue is trying to do this to.  Is here any way you could try and find others and organize?  Are there any local wedding forums or anything like that where you might be able to find others?

Post # 45
2645 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

Emma5 :  I may know nothing about what I’m talking about, as I had my wedding at home, but imo booking anything in advance should lock in a price, they signed a contract with you, isn’t changing the price breaching the contract?

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