Hiring Vendors: Venue Contracts

Ready to start booking vendors for your wedding? It’s a big undertaking but it is all about staying organised and attentive to details.

Here are 10 important details that should most definitely be in any contract you sign for any service you book for your wedding:

1.Financial commitments

Make sure that you state deposit and final payment dates with the payment schedule and the dollar amount due. Along with these, be sure to check out the refund policies, administration fees and cancellation policies. Venues usually have a payment schedule in which you do not pay any amount due on the day of the event.

Administration fee does not necessarily mean gratuity. If it is gratuity it should be clearly stated in the contract.

2. Revenue guarantees

For a catering contract, it should clearly state the minimum dollar amount charged per person for the food and beverages and any bar overage clauses.

For a venue, it should state the minimum number of guests to pay for.

For each of these, if negotiable, a lower guarantee allows for you to add guests later on if and when necessary.

3. Decor restrictions

Venues usually have policies over any open flames, fireproofing and for any decor hanging off their ceilings. Fireproofing the venue is an additional expense which should be addressed before you sign the contract to avoid any unexpected costs closer to time.

4. Exclusive vendors

Venues usually have their preferred list of vendors with whom they are associated. These may be on-site caterers, audiovisual personnel or even in-house DJs. Exclusive vendors may take away the option for you to use your preferred vendor that you are familiar with or one which fits in your budget.

5. Access hours

The venue contract should clearly specify the load-in and load-out time and if there are any overtime rates that would be charged.

6. Noise limitations

For events held outdoors, the contract should indicate if there are any noise restrictions such as no amplified music after 12 am.

7. Staff included

Most people do not check for what staff they are going to be getting on the day of the event. This is important to include in your contract to ensure the best quality of guest experience is given to your guests. The venue should attend to this entirely as this is also their guest quality being seen. The staff may include bathroom attendants or security personnel.

8. Damage provisions

This is an important clause to add in the contract for any ‘what if’ incidents if they occur. This may include any damage to the property or equipment.

9. What is included in the service fee?

The most important part of the contract is where it states what services you are paying for. This may include lighting and sound, HVAC, Kitchen and other services like an in-house DJ or a planner for the day.

10. Contact and venue details

Name and contact details of you and the person representing the venue along with the date of the event and the start and end times of the event. In this, the room that you have booked for the event should also be included.

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