The top client complaint about shoers is "My farrier fails to show up and doesn't let me know." Reliability isn't a one-way street, though. Sometimes it is the client who fails to show up for a scheduled appointment.

This doesn't only register on the frustration meter, but can force a farrier to play an exhausting round of catch-up.

Virginia shoer Anita Leckie wants to know should a farrier handle these situations. Here's her post on the subject in the AFJ Farriers' Forum.

What do you do about clients missing appointments?  I seem to be having a run of clients either forgetting their appointment or cancelling at the last moment.  Tonight, I happened to look on Facebook to discover that my third appoinment tomorrow is taking a horse trailer to a neighboring state.  I messaged them, and no one will be at the barn for our appointment.  I have always let one missed appointment slide, and I never get upset about true emergencies, but it is too hard on me physically to miss too many appointments, and then have too many horses scheduled per day to try to catch up.  Any suggestions?

--Anita Leckie

When, taking on a new client, tell, your basic price, for work then add that you charge 25.00 for missed appointments, you are right in letting your current slide on the first one, Do not call them back ! when they can not find a Farrier, they will call you back, and then you tell them you need the missed appoint money and pay for what work you are gonna do that day. Remember, you you have to work to stay in touch with them and give them a return call for anything in 24 hours, that way you can demand that miss appointment fee.You may lose a few clients, but if treat your client good, give them a fair price and be on time your self.. then you will be better off...

I can't say that my clients don't reschedule on me, I had one today that rescheduled on me. I have always made reminder calls on the phone, and I insist that they confirm with me, or I will not show up, lately I have added texting to my reminders.  But I have noticed that email, and social networking sites give them too much wiggle room, one reason is they don't have to talk to you directly, so it is easier to blow you off.  Make them say it to you by voice, or text where you can reply immediately.  I have just implimented a reschedule charge myself, but that can be hard to collect, as some folks will just opt to call someone else rather than pay the additional fee, mainly that will keep honest people honest. One of the more experienced farriers in my area recommended to me to add five dollars on to the next several appointments until you have collected the amount of the missed shoeing. Most horse owners are hobby horse owners, and as such do not understand that you are not, and depend on the money you make shoeing to pay your bills. I have been trying to find a way to communicate that to my clients myself, and it has worked on some.

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