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taking payment from friends

(20 Posts)
noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 15:36:34

We have just had our garage made into a music room/playroom and dp has a drum kit in there we did this as he has been wanting to teach drums for years and so finally we have all the equipment etc.The problem is that loads and I mean loads of 'friends'are keen for their kids to learn and dp is worried about charging them.One asked how much and when he told her she said she would find someone else to share the hour with her son but dp would really prefer one to one for complete beginnrs.So how do we do this without becoming a free after school club(me) and making no money(dp)?BTW the going rate is 15 per our and dp is charging 12

Yorkiegirl Tue 01-Mar-05 15:38:35

Message withdrawn

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 15:41:53

we offered her that but she said by the time she got home she'd have to leave to pick up if only 1/2 hr I know she is always trying to get us to have her ds to play for long periods and am worried that I'll end up feeding him etc but I agree we have to be clear Dp does need the money that is why he is doing it tbh

Miaou Tue 01-Mar-05 15:50:58

noddyh, make sure you start as you mean to go on - you must have spent money converting the garage and therefore you need to reap the rewards of your investment if nothing else! Tbh I would say it is up to you to set the rate/terms of teaching, not the potential customers, and if they decide to try their luck elsewhere then that's up to them. If your dp is happier teaching one-to-one then that needs to be made clear from the outset. HTH.

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 15:59:58

I think you are right it has cost us a fair bit to set up and dp still needs to buy books and sticks etc It is hard with friends but I think it is difficlt when teaching drums to get much done with just one kit.

MunchedTooManyMarsLady Tue 01-Mar-05 16:29:52

I agree about sorting the ground rules. Unfortunately if you give an inch some will take a mile. I think that your DP should set his rate and his ratios (eg 1:1) and stick with it. If they really want drumming lessons then they will pay the rate etc. If they went into a music centre etc they wouldn't quibble. Good luck to your DP and I hope he gets lots of paying pupils.

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 16:31:43

thankyou my next holiday depends on it as does a new floor in the hall!

Freckle Tue 01-Mar-05 16:36:52

Perhaps the best way to go would be to draw up a formal contract setting out all terms and conditions and getting each parent to sign indicating that they have understood.

That way, if there are disputes in the future, such as a parent turning up with more than one child in order to share costs, they can't say they didn't know it was only meant to be 1-1.

Also you have to be really strict about making them pay at the beginning of each lesson, otherwise you'll find them saying that they'll pay you next week when they've got a new cheque book/their pay goes in, etc. This is more likely to happen with "friends".

This is your dp's business and he has to treat it as such, i.e. seriously, or people will take advantage.

JanH Tue 01-Mar-05 16:38:11

re the half-hour lessons, everybody I know whose kids do lessons too far from home to make it worth going back use the time to go to the supermarket or something. And most music lessons are half an hour (an hour is too long IMHO).

As you said (or implied) it sounds as if she's trying to wangle leaving him at your house for long periods and getting him fed and getting him free lessons. Stick to your guns (or DP's) and get set up properly with printed leaflets giving details and prices. (You could offer a discount for pre-paid blocks of lessons maybe, on the understanding that if they miss a lesson without adequate notice they still pay.)

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 16:39:24

I have printed out cards for him and we fully intend to have receipts etc ready at the end of each is meant to be a serious business but as dp is such a nice person I can already see people taking advantage so I will have to be tough from the start.

moschops Tue 01-Mar-05 16:40:43

my dp teaches drums in his spare time too (not many at the mo due to circumstances)

if you have a lot of people enquiring/booking for lessons then this is how it is:

the lesson is an hour long
it is £15
one student per lesson

be strong.........and keep to your rules.

dp had a student who repeatedly 'forgot' to let us know she couldn't come. For example it was half term and she assumed because she wasn't at school she didn't have her lesson.......even though he checked she was ok to come for it. as he teaches after work it was annoying to lose an evening because she didn't come and we could have made plans to do other things. she also lost interest pretty rapidly and couldn't be bothered to practice, in the end dp told her mum he felt guilty for charging her for an hour of what was effectively chatting. and also he could use that hour for a student who wanted to learn.

what i'd be tempted to do with 'friends' is offer them £12 an hour, with the condition of one student per hour and if they don't like it then let them go elsewhere and pay full whack!!!

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 16:41:36

the reason he said an hour is because with drums a lot of the work will be done on rubber pads over the drums to deaden the sound and then they need time at the end to play a bit with the pads off.Maybe 1/2 hr is enough but I fear the real reason is she will want to leave him here that is what worries me.

JanH Tue 01-Mar-05 16:41:56

When DS2 had cello lessons they were paid for in advance by the half-term; his piano lessons are paid monthly in arrears. Paying by the lesson sounds way too complicated and open to abuse to me.

MunchedTooManyMarsLady Tue 01-Mar-05 16:43:11

I've suddenly realized, that's very cheap. Though I suppose it depends where you are. In London I'm paying about £14 for 1/2hour. Hmmm.... don't suppose you are round the corner are you?

noddyholder Tue 01-Mar-05 16:45:49

I am in Brighton Roll up!Esp if you're not one of ds's friends really wanting to play on the ps2 and eat all our biccies and sod the drums1

moschops Tue 01-Mar-05 16:46:38

dp gives hour lessons because by the time the student has got here, made pleasantries, sat behind the kit and adjusted it to how they play, got warmed up etc they wouldn't get much of a lesson. he does only take students over the age of 14 at the moment though. he would probably do 30 minute sessions for anyone younger as i agree their attention span probably wouldn't be up to much more.

WestCountryLass Tue 01-Mar-05 21:26:29

Can I ask how much the conversion cost? We are hoping to convert the garage in the new house we are trying to buy. TIA

RTKangaMummy Tue 01-Mar-05 21:56:25

What about if you arranged the lessons for when you and your DS are out so that there is no way this other kid can stay for tea or playstation

Is there another door to the garage ie not front door so that kid doesnt come into house.

or arrange when your DS is going to be busy

also have anther kid afterwards so he has to leave.

Tommy Tue 01-Mar-05 22:06:24

A friend of mine teaches music in a converted garage type thing and the parents sit in the car while the lessons ae going on. I think that's very usual as most lessons are only half an hour.
Tell your friend to bring a book and make the most of a quiet half hour to herself!

charleypops Tue 01-Mar-05 22:22:25

Definitely start as you mean to go on. I used to have my own little biz, and learned this the hard way. You have to charge the going rate - why on earth not? He'll enjoy doing it more if he knows he's getting a fair amount. It's £20 around here btw.

And of course, dp has to teach one -to -one, I assume he only has the one drum kit, unless I suppose he could do one for half an hour, then swap and have the other watch?? (but not come into the house). Why not ask for £10 for half an hour? It's a touch unfair of your friend to assume that by having 2 for the hour means it will be half price. I'd say no to two though I think - there will be times when one can't make it etc etc...

I'd probably try to make it clear to the friend that her son will just be in the music room under dp's supervision and you won't be involved and he'll have to be picked up straight away afterwards so the next student can start. Set the ground rules.

Some people do try to take the p if you let them. Been there.

Sounds like a great little side line though!

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