You know the frustrastion. A client schedules a color correction only to later cancel on you, leaving you with expensive, unused products. Or maybe you’re canceled on three times in two days. Now you’re stressed about how this will affect your next paycheck. Whatever may be the cause of your frustration, should you charge deposits from clients for appointments? That is the exact question that was posed in a recent #btcWhatWouldYouDo.
“What do you guys think about charging deposits from clients for appointments? I have been canceled on three times in two days! Two of them were color corrections and one was a color that I bought specific (expensive) products for. The only problem is that they were first time call-in clients, so I don’t know how I would even go about charging a deposit. I have only been a stylist for two years so I REALLY rely on these clients to make rent each week and pay my bills.”
Here’s a sampling from what our more than 925,000 Instagram followers had to say!
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“You could definitely have a deposit rule…make it a small percentage of the total charge and they can apply that to the final cost by paying the remaining amount due after the service.” – @brianalindquist
“When I first started I was being canceled, rescheduled and no-showed on all the time…Once I started taking deposits I haven’t had one cancel or no-show since! I tell them I require a Venmo deposit that I take off their bill. Highly recommend it!” – @beachyyblonde
“At my old salon they did no-show fees! They were warned at the desk if they rebooked (the receptionist would get their phone number and address), they would be sent a bill for canceling last minute or no-showing. You could do a $10 deposit and if they no call, no-show it’s nonrefundable, but if they keep their appointment either give it back or put it toward their service.” – @taylormarieroberts_
“Not a good strategy. Take the time to call and confirm the day before; that will eliminate most no-shows.” – @iggywood
“Sadly that is the nature of the business. In order to avoid it for first-time clients, I will have those wanting a color correction come in for a consultation. Typically if they are willing to make the trip in the first time, they won’t no-show you for the actual appointment. The problem with the deposits is that the client can dispute then with the credit company.” – @hair_by_jonelle
“We charge a deposit at our salon, and it has been amazing. We have only had a few clients who have had a problem. But overall, less cancellations for all the stylists.” – @ashdemode
“We had a rule that you had to leave a card on file to book your appointment at my first salon job. And if you didn’t show, they charged you for 50 percent of your service and 17 percent gratuity. So don’t feel bad if you do something like this! Someone else could have had that slot so it’s not fair to other clients and it’s not fair to you. So yes, I would do a cancellation or booking with a card type of system.” – @honeybeedoeshair
“Always charge a deposit for long appointments and new clients. We are too busy for wasted appointments. If they are serious they pay the deposit no questions asked!” –
“I charge a $50 deposit for all new clients and send reminders for clients! Works out perfect! I rarely, rarely have no shows anymore!” – @khbkesley
“I always take deposits. I take 50 percent deposits for color…No deposit, no appointment! Simple as that.” – @lucieluella
“I’d kindly pay a deposit for my appointment. The client shouldn’t have any problems with that. The whole idea of making the appointment is to reserve a spot and time with a professional. You have every right to ask this of your clients. Especially the repeat offenders or in the case of the special color purchased for that specific client.” – @ekahawai
“This happens way too often. Our salon sends out confirmation emails and texts two days before their appointment, and even confirmed clients would still flake last-minute. I started taking credit card numbers down for all new clients booking any service over $100. If they don’t comply with our 24-hour cancelation policy they are charged 50 percent of service booked. Haven’t had a single no call/no-show since. And no one has complained about having to give their info at the time of booking.” – @estherachapman
“I have had this happen to me. For the flaky, forgetful clients in my book I make a really strong effort to shoot a text 45 minutes prior saying, ‘Just to confirm we’re still on for your color at 3:45!'” – @nellabe11a
“I charge ahead of time a percentage of their appointment total. If they don’t show, they don’t get their money back. It’s better incentive. I also charge to reserve spaces for consultations. It’s the only way to get people to not flake and the good ones understand and want to pay anyway because they know they are showing up.” – @gina.devine