Angela West thought she had everything planned for her daughter's wedding.
The mom of a bride had ordered a unique square tiered cake from a highly recommended cake shop. But she just learned the shop has closed. And she doesn't know what to do.
"They should have sent us a letter saying they are going out of business, can we get a refund. We didn't get no response, nothing," she told WCPO.
She says the shop still has her $75 deposit on her daughter's special cake.
Unfortunately, this happens so often when a small business goes under, and customers have made a down payment on a product or a service. They are left with no answers, and no refunds.
The building owners are liquidating all the contents at 50% off, and say unfortunately they are unable to help.
"We feel terrible for all the customers," they said. "But we never did not take care of any debts we owed. And in this case we cannot pay back what we didn't get."
So don't let this happen to you.
When booking a wedding bakery, photography, limo, or other service:
- Check the wedding vendor's Better Business Bureau report. If you see a pattern of similar complaints, be suspicious.
- Check their Yelp reviews. While some can be unfair, they can give you a heads up to potential problems.
- Make your down payment with a MasterCard or Visa credit card, not personal check. And don't pay with cash or Venmo, which gives you no way to get help in the event of a problem. A credit card company can reverse fraudulent charges.
Angela realizes she is only talking about $75, and not hundreds of dollars, but she says the bigger thing is she is not sure if her daughter can order a specialty cake now on such short notice.
"I'm worried because I know how important this wedding is to her," she said.
As always, don't waste your money.
This story was originally published by WCPO's John Matarese
Don't Waste Your Money" is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc.
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