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    8 Replies Latest reply on May 6, 2008 7:04 PM by venemiami

    But I have to charge...

    venemiami Wayfarer
      I am opening my own business as a Event Planner. Basically I will put parties together for clients but I still don't know how to charge and how much. I don't know when is the right moment to get part of money or the big total or how to secure the client in order to stay with me and not going with someone else or even worse: cancel everything at the last minute and lose the money.
        • Re: But I have to charge...
          LUCKIEST Guide
          But I have to charge, Hi and welcome. You are opening your own business as a Event Planner.
          Where are you located (like City and State)?? Do you have a Business Name??
          Have you developed a Business and Marketing Plan??
          Do you know about SCORE?? SCORE is FREE and can help you succeed.
          • Re: But I have to charge...
            Johnsquest68 Adventurer
            As part of your research for the business, do you know what others in the area are charging? Usually the rate varies by the type and scope of the event.

            Tell us more about your business. Name of your company, and do you have a business plan?
              • Re: But I have to charge...
                venemiami Wayfarer
                I haven't search others, but more than the price is the method of charging that I don't know. Should I charge at the beginning or at the end? How much should I ask to start working, etc. My company's name is PLAN IT VENUS EVENTS and I am developing the business plan.
                  • Re: But I have to charge...
                    LUCKIEST Guide
                    But I have to charge, Yes and part of the Business Plan is HOW MUCH TO CHARGE.
                    You might want to talk to SCORE or a Lawyer.
                    You should get a Deposit and then maybe more as you go.
                    You should also collect the WHOLE fee before the event and NOT after.
                    Again, LUCKIEST
                    1 of 1 people found this helpful
                • Re: But I have to charge...
                  designer Tracker
                  Have you googled "Event Planner"? I imagine there are a gazillion BLOGS and sites that "cater" to your interest. Event planning is huge. Have you seen any of the event planning shows on cable TV? It's big business. You have to really, really be creative and have many contacts and connections to pull off a great event. Everything from food, flowers, entertainment, goody bags, animals, waterfalls, pastry, table and chairs, plants, etc. etc. It is not for the weak. If you are interested in this type of business, you may want to actually work for an event planner just to get your feet wet and introduced into the business.
                  • Re: But I have to charge...
                    dollsbags Adventurer
                    Here is some advice for you that worked for me when I had my computer consulting business for 10 years...

                    If the job requires an outlay of cash from your own pocket for materials, get that amount as a deposit up-front just in case. So for instance:

                    If my customer wants a new file server for his business and my quote is as follows

                    Server $2500
                    Hub $100
                    Wireless Router $50
                    Installation and Configuration (25hrs@120/hr) = $3,000.00

                    Subtotal: $5,650.00

                    Deposit: $2,650.00 (roughly 50%)
                    Balance due on completion: $3,000.00

                    My cost out of pocket for this job upfront (upon contract signing) is: $2,650.00 - require this as your down payment.
                    Balance due upon completion is: $3,000.00

                    Your exposure? Well if the customer backs out you have to give them back their deposit but can charge a "restocking fee" or something similar. You then return the goods to the manufacturer for a refund or use them for another job if possible. The manufacturer may charge a restocking fee so this is why you charge one as well and use it to pay the manufacturer's fee.

                    If the customer refuses to pay the balance because he doesn't like the completed project, you have at least broken even and can take the matter up with a claims agency or lawyer. You haven't really "lost" money in this case except for the installation charges, which is really 100% profit unless you are paying an employee to do the installation for you. Your employee makes (hopefully) significantly LESS than $120/hr though so your loss in this case can also be "absorbed".

                    If all goes well then the customer will be happy and pay you the balance upon completion and they are also happy because they didn't have to pay the entire amount up front. They also have the reassurance that they wouldn't have to pay you in full until the job is done professionally and to their liking.