Vendor Agreements & Contracts
As an event and wedding planner I am constantly looking at proposals, estimates, and contracts. Paperwork details are essential to the overall commitment and protocol with each vendor and establishing the client and vendor relationship. Making sure that what your are initially paying for is thoroughly outlined in the services section, or seeing what happens if your vendor cannot make it on your big day, is crucial.
Over the years, I have personally come across some vendors whom hold a business license, have insurance, and yet don’t have an official contract. Mind blowing right? Amongst receiving a proper contract that will be signed by you (the client) and then countersigned by your vendor, I highly recommend making sure you receive a copy of the countersigned contract to keep on file.
Prior to receiving the official contract make sure you have a proposal (or estimate) that is laid out in black and white so you can break down the expenses. These costs should also be described in the contract; how much you owe (total), how much the deposit is, and when the remaining balance is due. That way there are no real surprises and deadlines are clear.
There are simply too many “what ifs” without a contract and having everything in writing can answer any questions or "what ifs" you may have. If the vendor you are speaking with doesn’t provide a legitimate contract, or if it seems to be missing a lot of standard business fundamentals, we recommend moving on. Not only is having a contract helpful to protect you, but also protects your vendors from any incidentals or cancellations. Also, keep in mind your planner is happy to look over paperwork, but is not a lawyer. ;)