i’m not sure what you are looking is a contract, i would think
it a matter of your own policy. when a customer commits to a
custom or special order by way of a deposit, they are commited to
what was discussed and what was understood to be made
specifically for them. they are also putting faith in you to
deliver what they have in mind.
of course there are many ways a miscommunication can occur. i’ll
usually do what it takes to make the customer happy in thiis
case, if reasonable. if it is a matter of the customer changing
their mind after the fact they should pay. if they don’t like
that idea, they are simply not being reasonable. it is part of
our job to communicate, in a nice way, why they should pay. give
examples from other industries, like kitchen remodeling. the
customer picked the color, you showed them a sample, and they
gave the ok.
sometimes it is better just to give the money back in certain
cases. i really hate to do this but i will in certain cases. it
may be more cost effective to spend your day working on the next
project than explaining something to a disgruntled customer, no
matter how ‘right’ you are.
if i were to write a contract, it might look something like
half deposit, non refundable
any changes made after work has commenced, customer is liable
for any changes, including labor and materials.
labor is not refundable, under almost any circumstance.
not really something one would want to use as a sales tool, huh?
all this discussion is for retail. for wholesale, i would be
more tenacious on the 3 points above.
one bottom line is this: part of my job, a large part of it, is
to be sure people are happy with what i do. so, one must be very
objective about one’s own work. did the customer really
understand what we were going to do? is what i did what i said?