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    Former MSE Penelope
    MoneyMoral Dilemma: Should I make my friend pay for the vase?
    • #1
    • 27th Jul 10, 3:09 PM
    MoneyMoral Dilemma: Should I make my friend pay for the vase? 27th Jul 10 at 3:09 PM
    This is a real life MMD so please bear in mind the MoneySaver in question will read your responses:

    Please give this MoneySaver the benefit of your advice...

    Should I make my friend pay for the vase?

    I hired my friend, at her request, to clean my house as she's only working part-time and needs extra cash. The other day while cleaning the living room, she broke an expensive vase given to me as a birthday present. If she wasn't my friend, I would've docked it off her wages. But I know she's a bit broke at the moment.

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    Last edited by Former MSE Penelope; 27-07-2010 at 7:29 PM.
Page 1
    • neneromanova
    • By neneromanova 27th Jul 10, 10:22 PM
    • 2,909 Posts
    • 6,893 Thanks
    neneromanova
    • #2
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:22 PM
    • #2
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:22 PM
    Too right, either ask for the money back or as for her to replace it. She wanted the job, she has to deal with the consiquences. Plus if she was a true friend she would have offered to pay for a new one anyway.
    DD1 Born 31st March 2008
    DD2 Born 29th August 2010
    DS1 Born 28th October 2013
    Got Married 15th September 2012 Now Mrs Clark


  • littlejaffa
    • #3
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:36 PM
    • #3
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:36 PM
    no of course you shouldn't that's what household insurance is for - it was an accident, if she'd broke it when she was visiting you wouldn't ask he to pay (or maybe you would)

    if you think it was deliberate thats a whole nother question but assuming you call her friend and therefore it was an accident, treat it as such and of course you don't ask her to pay for it
    Donít ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it.
    Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.
  • mrsmoneybee
    • #4
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:45 PM
    • #4
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:45 PM
    Sorry, but no. I've been in a not dissimilar situation with a friend cleaning to help us both out (them financially and me as I'm a busy working mum) and something got damaged. It was simply an accident. Yes I would be financially worse off if I chose to replace the item (which I didn't, so am not out of pocket) and yes I lose out, but at the end of the day it's an accident (who's not broken something in a shop?) and I would never consider someone a friend if I wanted to charge them for it.
  • dcddcd
    • #5
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:46 PM
    • #5
    • 27th Jul 10, 10:46 PM
    Certainly not. Claim it from your contents insurance - that is what you pay your premiums for.
    If you don't have it either give yourself a slap on the wrist and buy a policy or use the money you didn't spend on insurance to buy a new vase.

    Vases are replaceable - friends are not.
  • KarleyMarie
    • #6
    • 27th Jul 10, 11:26 PM
    • #6
    • 27th Jul 10, 11:26 PM
    I'd expect them to offer, but I wouldn't accept it. Accidents happen after all..
    Slimming World: 1stone 11lbs lost in 11 weeks
  • Molely
    • #7
    • 27th Jul 10, 11:36 PM
    • #7
    • 27th Jul 10, 11:36 PM
    Of course you shouldn't, unless of course you can show on a balance of probability that it was done on purpose, which I doubt.
  • CorallyWorally
    • #8
    • 28th Jul 10, 12:21 AM
    Should I make her pay?
    • #8
    • 28th Jul 10, 12:21 AM
    I'd say no. It was an accident and if you feel strongly about these things it's your responsibility to have contents insured to cover accidental damage. Difficult to laugh it off, but couldn't you think together of something else she could do to cheer you up again, even if it's only to make you a cup of tea or have you round for a meal? These are things even skint people can enjoy doing and brings you both back to having warm feelings.
    Agree with person who says friendships are more valuable than vases.
    Last edited by CorallyWorally; 28-07-2010 at 12:31 AM.
  • robynprincess
    • #9
    • 28th Jul 10, 1:25 AM
    • #9
    • 28th Jul 10, 1:25 AM
    No I wouldnt ask her to replace it, is a vase worth risking my friendship? no, i dont think so.
    • John_Pierpoint
    • By John_Pierpoint 28th Jul 10, 2:49 AM
    • 8,233 Posts
    • 7,383 Thanks
    John_Pierpoint
    I suppose legally it is a case of: is she self employed or an employee?

    In reality you just have to chew your elbows and realise that when you employ someone to save you from doing the work yourself this is a risk you are taking.

    Smile through it - every dog is allowed one bite

    Check your insurance, when butter fingers falls down the stairs, you could be in real trouble.

    You really might need to call on the bonds of friendship when that happens - even before the day time TV ambulance chasers get in on the act.
  • JueC
    Had a similar incident myself a few years ago. A friend dropped an expensive champagne glass which cost me £19 to replace. He didn't offer to pay so I just gritted my teeth and grinned through it! Presumed he didn't know the value or he might have offered to pay (maybe wishful thinking on my behalf). They're actually very generous friends so I've probably had the money back one way or another over the years since.

    Anyone can have an accident, whether they're cleaning the house or just visiting. If you had hired a professional cleaner, they would have had their own insurance to cover such a situation.
    • lutzi1
    • By lutzi1 28th Jul 10, 7:57 AM
    • 2,671 Posts
    • 48,236 Thanks
    lutzi1
    It could just as easily have got broken if you'd been cleaning yourself - stuff happens.
    Hope is not a strategy.
    • roses
    • By roses 28th Jul 10, 8:12 AM
    • 2,288 Posts
    • 1,170 Thanks
    roses
    Insurance only covers you if you have accidental insurance.

    I'd ask her to replace it and as neneromanova, she should have offered.
  • Missconduct
    I agree that she should offer but I think it's a good example of why it's a bad idea to mix business with pleasure.
    • gaily
    • By gaily 28th Jul 10, 8:35 AM
    • 188 Posts
    • 157 Thanks
    gaily
    A true friend would offer to replace it - whether they could afford to or not (make payments back over time etc)

    You'd then be in the position to say it was a gift from the ex or their mum, and you're far happier without it, or that you understand she can't afford to pay it all back at once, but as it was an accident, what could she afford to pay.

    Insurance is great (if you have accdiental damage cover), but there's always an excess to pay, and people forget that by making a relatively small claim, that they could be penalised by the insurers next year - in my experince by up to 5% of the annual premium for making 1 claim.

    Also, if this isn't the first such small claim, you'll really get hammered at renewal.
    Always on the hunt for a bargain. :rolleyes:

    Always grateful for any hints, tips or guidance as to where the best deals are
  • Morse999
    A responsible person would have their contents of the house insured....would she expect her friend to pay if she had badly damaged a "Van Gogh" or similar masterpiece?, Essentially there is no difference.
    • tanith
    • By tanith 28th Jul 10, 8:46 AM
    • 7,982 Posts
    • 8,589 Thanks
    tanith
    No my friends are more important than any vase... she probably feels bad enough already
    #6 of the SKI-ers Club

    "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" Edmund Burke
    • andyroberts1967
    • By andyroberts1967 28th Jul 10, 8:51 AM
    • 357 Posts
    • 407 Thanks
    andyroberts1967
    A true friend would offer to replace it - whether they could afford to or not (make payments back over time etc)

    You'd then be in the position to say it was a gift from the ex or their mum, and you're far happier without it, or that you understand she can't afford to pay it all back at once, but as it was an accident, what could she afford to pay.

    Insurance is great (if you have accdiental damage cover), but there's always an excess to pay, and people forget that by making a relatively small claim, that they could be penalised by the insurers next year - in my experince by up to 5% of the annual premium for making 1 claim.

    Also, if this isn't the first such small claim, you'll really get hammered at renewal.
    Originally posted by gaily
    That's why you shop around at renewal time, if your current insurance provider comes up with an inflated premium you just use a comparison site and find the cheapest quote. Then you call them up to tell them they're not the cheapest, and invariably they'll match the quote. That's been my experience with Direct Line anyway.

    With regards to the dilemma, of course I wouldn't ask the friend to pay for it, even if she insisted, I would refuse. However, if I had been the friend, I would definitely have offered to pay, and even if she said no, then I might have been tempted to source another vase and present it to her at a later date (depending on the cost of course).
  • babyjaike
    Yes - she should pay!
    I seem to be in the minority here....but I think she should pay to replace the vase!
    I don't think 'friend' comes into it. She damaged an item of yours so should put things right.
    If you were looking after someones child and they broke an item then tough- they were in your care, so your responsibility. This is an adult who must be responsible for their actions.
    Yes it was an accident but why should you have the hasle of a claim or increased premiums next renewal because of her?
    (shops put up signs saying 'all breakages must be paid for' they have their own insurance for their own misfortunes - not our clumsiness)
    Lesson to learn - never mix business with pleasure!

    If however, you didn't like the vase and if offered the money wouldn't replace it anyway, then thats another story....
  • Money_saving_Martyn
    I think the important thing here is the fact it was a birthday present.

    Surely, if anything, it's the sentimental value (if any) rather than the value that's important when it was a gift?

    If a friend of mine broke something as an accident, whether cleaning or not, I wouldn't demand or expect that they pay. Accidents happen. You can live without vase too! I don't really have anything in my house I'd be scared of breaking - I could live without many things until I could buy a replacement.

    Interesting to see people suggesting if I they'd done it, they'd have offered to pay but wouldn't accept money if their friend offered - this shows how unnecessarily complex British social norms are! If you wouldn't accept, don't expect!
    Please note: I am NOT Martin Lewis, just somebody else called Martyn that likes money saving!
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