Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Wed Oct 20, 2004 11:52 am

CJ . . .

You are corectomundo in your analogy of what I was trying to say!

The point I was trying to make is that chances are, when a client cancels and asks for their 'deposit' back, they don't seem to understand that we have already applied time and money toward their event.

And they think that just because they may not need our services anymore on their 'special' day that they deserve to get all monies that they have given us!

NOT!

----


Haven't seen Mork or Mindy around town lately . . . or the Ramsey's either!

However, I do frequently drive by the house that Mork and Mindy supposedly lived in . . .

And I can see the park that they played frisby in (during the opening of the show) from our patio!

See the white area covered in snow in the center of this photo . . . that's the park!

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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby Jem-star » Wed Oct 20, 2004 12:04 pm

Beee-Yuuuuuu-Tee-Full shot, Johnny!

I'm going to assume you took it!

One cannot disagree with any of your thoughts about client's misconceptions.

Sometimes, I explain to prospects that when they book me for four hours, THAT part is actually FREE and included in their package; What they're actually paying for is all the services that I perform for them before the event even begins.

I also add that they're paying for all the lugging of equipment I do when setting up and breaking down for their event.

Of course, I would do this with my prospects only to emphisize the point we are discussing here.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Wed Oct 20, 2004 12:28 pm

Yes I did . . .

From my patio . . . and still in my jammies!

That shot was taken this past Easter Sunday at around 7 a.m..

I've got literally 100's of sunrise photos of that same view!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby DJStuCrew » Wed Oct 20, 2004 2:07 pm

"Reservation fees," as I understand it, are routinely non-refundable. Just try to get yours back if you cancel a hotel stay. I changed the wording from "advanced payment" to "reservation fee" on the advice of Sheldon Starke when I met him at a convention.

In the past 25 years, I was in court twice and won both times even before the change, as my contract states that "It is agreed that any advanced payments made...are NON-REFUNDABLE if the above specified event is cancelled for any reason beyond [my] control..." Not only does this protect the "reservation fee," but ANY payments made before the time of cancellation.

So far, so good, although I heartily agree that you run your contracts by a lawyer -- and make sure that your lawyer has experience in entertainment contracts.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby djmc » Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:14 pm

Great advice CJ!
Did I tell you this is turning into one of the most informative boards for DJs on the 'net? (Sucking up over)


one thing I'd like to add:

"Forfeiture of Retainer herein is not a penalty, but represents compensation to {name of DJ company} for lost business opportunities on the reserved date."


this little clause will protect you from attorneys!

another clause that I use is to say that the Retainer is fully refundable up to 45 days prior to the date, but ONLY if the same date and time is rebooked!

For example, I had one cancellation this year, the wedding was supposed to have been on May 14 from 2-6pm--- MOB sent letter of cancellation 58 days prior to the date, asking for a refund of her retainer (groom-to-be got cold feet and backed out). I told her that I would refund her in full as soon as I re-booked her date and time. Guess what, nobody called for that date! So I ended up bookng a teen dance from 8-11 that nite and made $699 off that party....and pocketed $200 more from the "refundable" deposit.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby DJ Iron Mike » Sun Oct 24, 2004 8:40 pm

I had to change my terminaology too. I kind of screwed myself on on contract. Many of the guys around here call it a deposit and it almost seems natural to call it a deposit but I had a Bride pay in full and then cancel out on me. I had deposited the check intot he bank because it was more than 6 months out and the check wasn't going to be any good in 6 months. So in the meantime I used this money to save my house from the mortgagers and then the girl emails me and says she wants her money back. That was yet another issue I had to re-word because asking for a refund by email is kind of a lousy thing to do.
So because i hadn't really set forth any procedures about how to deal with the problem at that time I didn't really have anyone to blame but me because I didn't see something like this happening. Anyway I have to refund the girl all of her money because to keep my nose clean, I did use the word deposit. I refunded her 1/3 of the total amount and haven't had the ability to get her the rest of the money back yet.
She ought to consider herself lucky because as I understand it, if it was somebody else she might not have been so lucky at getting any of it back.
Now as for wording i the contracts, my neighboring DJ's are not understanding to well why I am doing things with the approach I am doing it with. I have been trying to take a hard lined approach that I am not going to jump at every carrot that is held infront of me and some of them just don't seem to realize that there are those who can be my customer and those who are not my customer. Darn straight I'm being selective at who I DJ for because every single last minute bride I have ever DJ'd for has been a Bridezilla and blamed me for not meeting with them in advance and not knowing what they wanted. (notice is usually a week out and there is no time to prepare)
I stop taking last minute gigs. A last minute gig is anything less than a month out. There was a lot I ihad to work into my contract and the concept of keeping it simple and sweet is what has burned me because it was to vague and didn't cover enough. My contract is a littler larger now but not as big as closing on a house j/k So I ask for a retainer fee just like any good lawyer would. I'm not going to get burned anymore
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Sun Oct 24, 2004 9:09 pm

I don't mind unorganized brides or last minute callers!

True, the last minute callers are usually more trouble than those that have planned ahead . . .

At my last wedding reception (10-09-2004), they were 99.9% unorganized as far as the festivities of the reception!

All I knew ahead of time was their first dance tune ('Something' - Beatles) . . .

The rest they just told me to let them know when it was time!

A great time was had by all . . .

Here's a couple of pics:

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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby DJStuCrew » Mon Oct 25, 2004 1:37 am

I love last minute gigs! If a bride wants to take issue with me after only giving me a few days noticed, I point out that I normally prepare a full two weeks in advance and it was SHE who procrastinated. Usually they see the absurdity of their argument. One has turned into quite a fan. I've done several parties for their family over the years. You just never know where something will lead!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby CJ Greiner » Mon Oct 25, 2004 9:52 am

DJStuCrew wrote:I love last minute gigs! If a bride wants to take issue with me after only giving me a few days noticed, I point out that I normally prepare a full two weeks in advance and it was SHE who procrastinated. Usually they see the absurdity of their argument. One has turned into quite a fan. I've done several parties for their family over the years. You just never know where something will lead!


Every time I pick up a last-minute gig, it's usually because I'm "saving the day" because of someone's poor planning, or because another DJ couldn't make it...

The client always seems so relieved to have found another DJ that will do their event, and somehow it seems like it takes much less planning time. They get the money in quickly, they fill out and return their reception planner quickly and they seem to have fewer special requests as well.

-------------
The wedding I did two weeks ago was like that: A DJ went on another board and said he had a Friday gig up in Fairfax, VA if anyone wanted it (one and a half weeks before the event!) and since I was planning to drive up to Maryland on Saturday to visit my Sister anyway... I figured "why not?" It would pay for the trip and then some!

The people paid by check (UPS Overnight) and faxed in the reception planner the next day. We had to do a little shuffling around because the wedding was upstairs (provided music for that) and the reception was downstairs -- but the building had an elevator so it worked out great.

End of the night? "Thanks, it was fantastic!" + $100 tip. :money: :money: :money: (paid for the hotel & meals!)
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby djmc » Mon Oct 25, 2004 6:48 pm

:important: :money: :money::money::money: :important:

Hey, I love the green dollar symbol Emoticons!!! :hahaha:
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby jwg » Mon Oct 25, 2004 10:23 pm

:money: :money: even more :money: !!!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby Jem-star » Thu Oct 28, 2004 9:31 am

MusicDoctorDJ wrote:Yes I did . . .

From my patio . . . and still in my jammies!

I once shot an elephant in my jammies...

How he got in there, I'll never know!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Thu Oct 28, 2004 10:07 am

:biglaugha:

I was with a friend in a bar a few years ago . . .

He's 6 foot 6 inches tall . . . and about 300 pounds!

And has a beer belly!

He was talking to a gal in the bar (hitting on her :shock: ) and she said to him:

"You look like an elephant!"

To which he replied . . .

"Would you like to see my trunk?" :hahaha:

That cracked me up . . .

He took off with her . . . so I guess she did (want to see his trunk)! :roll:
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby Jem-star » Thu Oct 28, 2004 1:19 pm

And you post pictures of yourself working at a CHURCH?

Tsk! Tsk!
Last edited by Jem-star on Thu Oct 28, 2004 1:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby Jem-star » Thu Oct 28, 2004 1:23 pm

Hey JOHN,

Great shot of the tarantula.

I hope THAT thing never ended up in your jammies.

I'd like to see you put it thru PhotoShop to give it a more OMINOUS Halloween feel.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Fri Oct 29, 2004 12:20 am

This picture?

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That's not a church . . .

It is the Oddfellows Lodge in Boulder, Colorado!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Fri Oct 29, 2004 12:37 am

How's this . . . ?

I just Music Doctor'ed up the spider picture in Photoshop 7a . . .
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby Jem-star » Fri Oct 29, 2004 8:19 am

Uh...Er....Buddy...THAT'S A CHURCH!

If it ain't, then it's CLOSE ENOUGH!

Are you telling me those aren't Biblical scenes on the windows? Those aren't PEWS to the side? Those aren't BIBLES in the pews?

What is an ODDFELLOW, anyway?

Oh ...That's right...MORK From ORK!

----------

Hey! That dress-up of your spidey friend was just what the MusicDoctor ordered!

Maybe you can somehow add in some fog...Also, hide the mountains in the backround!
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Fri Oct 29, 2004 9:49 am

The Oddfellow's is an organization similar to the Mason's (Masonic Lodge) or the Moose Lodge!

They raise money for lots of charities.

This particular building was built by The Oddfellows . . . and this is there meeting room!

It is a two story building and the first floor is rented out to pay for the building itself . . . there is an army surplus store on the ground level!

I can tell you this . . . it definately is not a church.
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Re: Contracts: Using 'Retainer Fee' vs. 'Deposit'

Postby MusicDoctorDJ » Fri Oct 29, 2004 9:57 am

I found the website of The Order Of The Odd Fellows:

http://www.ioof.org/

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