Barn Manners: How to Get Someone to Settle a Bill September 08 2010, 0 Comments

Question: Earlier in the show season, a friend asked me to trailer her horse to a local horse show. I agreed and we settled on a price of a dollar per mile. When the show was over, I let her know that the trip was 225 miles round trip. Six weeks have passed, and I’m still waiting to get paid. I’m getting annoyed. What should I do?

Answer: You and your friend agreed on a price. You provided the service. It’s time for her to settle her bill. First, I’d recommend writing out a bill, with a date the service was provided. Leave it in her tack trunk or locker.

Next time you see her, ask, “Did you see the bill I left you for the trailering?” If she says yes, following up with, “Can you write me a check today?” I’d even follow her out to the car while she gets her checkbook.

If you leave her a bill and still get no response, try calling her or sending an email. Be polite, but firm. Say: “Hi there. Can you please leave me a check at the barn for the $225 for the trailering? Thanks.” Keep at it until you get a response. In the future, you can avoid this situation by asking people to pay for trailering in advance.

Fortunately, in most cases, this is an honest oversight. For some of us it can be a matter of waiting for that next paycheck to come in, as (yikes) things can get tight at the end of show season. If you owe money to your trainer, barn owner, the person who does your trailering or braider and can’t pay right away, speak up! Let them know when they can expect to get paid. Make payments if you have to, which shows a good faith effort to settle your debts.

This article was first published on The Chronicle of the Horse website.