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Engaged, Event Planning, Wedding Planning, Wedding Vendors

July 20, 2022

Spotting a Scam Wedding Planner

Your wedding is a special day that deserves to be perfect, unique, and a representation of your love. However, preparing for a wedding is no easy feat, which is exactly why you may be searching for a wedding planner. Hiring a wedding planner is meant to take all the stress of the preparation off your shoulders, but what happens if you end up hiring a fake wedding coordinator?

Unfortunately, wedding scams have been rising, leaving many couples drowning in extensive bills, cheap decorations, and venue discrepancies. So naturally, you don’t want to find out you’ve been scammed and cheated out of the best day of your life!

You and your partner should have a beautiful day as promised. And what better way to do that than to find a professional wedding planner. Here are nine red flags to help you spot a scam wedding planner:

Look For a Business Website

Anyone can create a Facebook business page and take it down in a matter of seconds, which is why you should look for a wedding planner that has a business website. A website acts as a home base for business owners and is a perfect medium for you to get insight into a wedding planner’s services, business model, and price ranges. In addition, contact information such as an email or phone number should be transparent and easy to find on the website.

It’s important to note that some wedding planners are freelancers and may not have a website. If this is the case, their social media should reflect pictures of events they’ve planned, detailed business information, and reviews from clients. The more you know about a business, the better!

Spotting a Scam Wedding Planner

Wedding Planner Office & Location

If you want to make sure you’re hiring a legitimate wedding planner, check to see if they have their own office or location for their business. You can research to see how long they’ve been running their business. Bonus points if they’ve been going strong for a few years.

A wedding planner’s office should reflect their years of experience by showcasing photographs from past events and decoration samples. If you walk in to find a bare, makeshift office, that’s a major red flag that you’re dealing with a scammer.                                                        

On the other hand, freelance wedding planners may not have a business address or office for you to visit. However, they should be able to provide a business registration as proof of legitimacy.                                                           

Check in with Past Clients                                                     

Find out if your wedding planner is authentic by asking them to provide you with references from previous clients. This may be a lengthy process as wedding planners have to gain permission to share client details; however, it’s completely worth it.                                             

Think of it this way: You’re the job interviewer and you want to make sure you get the best candidate to run your wedding, so you contact their past employers.                                                      

Look out for consistent excuses or refusal from scammers. If you weren’t sure about your wedding planner being a fake, you can be sure of it now!

Making In-Person Appointments

A professional wedding planner knows that a successful event means conducting in-person appointments with clients to better understand what the couple wants. Meeting in person is ideal for you and your partner to determine if you’re hiring the right wedding planner for your big day.                                             

If you’re dealing with a scammer, they’ll likely decline to meet in person or seem overwhelmed. Test the waters by asking specific wedding questions to determine the legitimacy and knowledge of the coordinator.                                                      

Wedding planners typically stay up to date on wedding trends, so if the wedding planner has no idea what you’re talking about, it’s time to move on and find a real planner.                                                          

Spotting a Scam Wedding Planner

Payment Pressure

Watch out if your wedding planner is pressuring you to pay them in full right away! This is a huge red flag that you have a scammer on your hands.                                                            

Typically, a professional wedding planner starts a business transaction with you by developing a contract. Following that, you get an opportunity to look over the contract, sign off on it, and put down a deposit — not a full payment. So, don’t fall for the whole early compensation scheme!                                                     

Legal Wedding Contract                                                        

The wedding planner’s contract must be detailed and notarized. In addition, the agreement should contain information about the business, such as the company’s name, address, contact number, and the services and suppliers they will provide for your event.                                      

Keep your eyes peeled for phony contracts with very little information about the wedding package services and suppliers.                                                 

Preparation Timeline & Payment Periods                                                     

A legitimate wedding planner will send you a timeline of preparation dates and payment periods. This helps alleviate the stress of getting ready for the big day. Watch out for wedding scammers that ask for additional money to pay suppliers or decorations.                                                   

A genuine wedding coordinator would be able to solve any supplier discrepancies that are within their budget. Remember: You should only pay what’s outlined in the contract.

Supplier Receipts

It’s common and valid for couples to ask for receipts to prove that suppliers have been paid. This allows couples to be more aware of their wedding budget. However, if your wedding planner refuses to issue receipts to you, that is a bad sign!                                                       

You can discuss acknowledgment receipts with your wedding planner ahead of time and determine if they are the real deal.                                                     

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Being Transparent about Costs                                                         

Wedding planners know about the costs of a wedding and are aware of your budget. With that said, a professional wedding planner will communicate expenses with you and help you determine what makes sense for your budget.                                                     

Freebies may sound fun, but a legitimate wedding planner will not offer many free services. Tip: If you want to be on top of costs, researching your ideal venue or decorations will help you get a realistic perspective on overall wedding costs. The scammers won’t be able to pull one over you!

When it comes to your special day, you can avoid pesky wedding scammers with research and a better understanding of how the wedding business really functions. When you hire a legitimate wedding planner, you can bet that it will save you stress and make your wedding more memorable.

One thing, we here at An Event Lady Production is that we took the time to invest in ourselves and our business We are Certified Wedding Planners through the Certified Wedding Planner Society, the world’s leading wedding planner certification program, and hold the title of Master Certified Wedding Planner.  To learn more about what we do as a planner and how we can bring your dream wedding celebration contact us today. www.aneventladyproduction.com

“My name is Angela. B. Cameron. I am the owner of An Event Lady Production, I am proud to say, I am a  Certified Wedding Planner, hold the title of Master Certified Wedding Planner, and Certified Designer all thru the Certified Wedding Planner Society, the world’s leading wedding planner certification program.”

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