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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 05 Jul 2013 (Friday) 21:11
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Wedding deposit. What percentage?

 
HiepBuiPhotography
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Jul 08, 2013 14:29 |  #16

Aressem wrote in post #16101583 (external link)
I'm thinking it might be a good idea to collect a post dated check (dated for 2 weeks prior to the wedding) at the same time as the retaining fee.

This doesn't sound like a good idea to me. If I were a client, I wouldn't want one of my checks floating around.


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HiepBuiPhotography
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Jul 08, 2013 14:30 |  #17

I do 25% and the rest two weeks before the wedding.


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Peacefield
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Jul 09, 2013 06:31 |  #18

nicksan wrote in post #16096957 (external link)
30% retainer in order to secure the date and lock in the price. The rest is due 2 weeks prior to the wedding day.

Me, too. Except I ask for only a $500 deposit (~20%). The lower deposit is appealing to prospects and since I don't do this full time, it's not a big deal if I hold the date for them and they bail.


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Fernando
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Jul 09, 2013 15:45 |  #19

Aressem wrote in post #16101583 (external link)
I'm thinking it might be a good idea to collect a post dated check (dated for 2 weeks prior to the wedding) at the same time as the retaining fee.

A post-dated check means nothing. It could still be deposited/cashed at any time. Exception is if the particular bank where it is being transacted has a policy against it.

-F


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Jul 15, 2013 23:52 |  #20

AstroNewbie wrote in post #16095984 (external link)
The one wedding photographer I know requires 50% retainer and the rest 2 weeks before the wedding.

That's what I do and it's spelled out in the contract.


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laughingwillowphotography
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Mar 05, 2016 19:44 |  #21

This is my first post, hopefully I do it right! For years I've just been charging a "$100 deposit" flat fee and the rest due on the wedding day. Now I'm sitting here reading this forum instead of shooting a $2000 wedding because they cancelled on me 2 days ago. My friend is at the wedding right now and what they didn't tell me is that they found a free photographer. I think they would have thought twice about cancelling if they had put down a 30% or 50% retainer fee.

I've approached business thus-far trying to be everyone's friend, and the sad truth is, they don't view me as their friend. It's just business to them and they don't care that I just lost a month of income. I hope that this experience will finally teach me and others that retainer fees help weed out flaky clients.


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Amadauss
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Mar 05, 2016 22:20 |  #22

1/3rd down which is usually never less then 500 dollars and the balance a week before. If they don't pay, I break their legs. Just Kidding!!!!


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dcnats
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Mar 06, 2016 08:23 |  #23

laughingwillowphotogra​phy wrote in post #17924919 (external link)
This is my first post, hopefully I do it right! For years I've just been charging a "$100 deposit" flat fee and the rest due on the wedding day. Now I'm sitting here reading this forum instead of shooting a $2000 wedding because they cancelled on me 2 days ago. My friend is at the wedding right now and what they didn't tell me is that they found a free photographer. I think they would have thought twice about cancelling if they had put down a 30% or 50% retainer fee.

I've approached business thus-far trying to be everyone's friend, and the sad truth is, they don't view me as their friend. It's just business to them and they don't care that I just lost a month of income. I hope that this experience will finally teach me and others that retainer fees help weed out flaky clients.

I've been shooting for 4 years and do about 10 weddings a year. Much like you, I have always approached things in a friendly way. I've always charged 10% (which for us is usually $250 or $300) and accept final payment right up until the day of the wedding. I've never been burned before but this thread and particularly your response has me rethinking my approach.


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memoriesoftomorrow
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Mar 06, 2016 08:33 |  #24

dcnats wrote in post #17925347 (external link)
I've been shooting for 4 years and do about 10 weddings a year. Much like you, I have always approached things in a friendly way. I've always charged 10% (which for us is usually $250 or $300) and accept final payment right up until the day of the wedding. I've never been burned before but this thread and particularly your response has me rethinking my approach.

I've come across a lot of togs who have been burned over the years.

When you have easily avoidable risks, avoid them.


Peter

  
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Wilt
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Mar 06, 2016 11:01 |  #25

I no longer do weddings, but when I did shoot them (in the days of film)...

  • I asked for 1/3 to hold the date on my calendar
  • I asked for 1/3 by the date of the wedding...and I knew all my costs to that point were covered, for film+processing and preview prints, and my time
  • I asked for final 1/3 when I delivered the preview book (which they got to keep).


That way if they never ordered any prints for the wedding album (and it did happen), I did not care. The prints and the album materials were already paid for in full, so it was costs not attained if they failed to order.

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Wedding deposit. What percentage?
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