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hollyh1125
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« on: August 25, 2011, 05:05:11 PM »

I thought this was possibly brought up before but I couldn't find anything on it when I tried the search. 
In the new system have we given any thought to adding booking fees for our studs?  That way if a slot is reserved and not used the stud owner isn't completely, for lack of a better term,"screwed"?  There have been a few occasions where if I knew a customer had decided not to use a spot that they had reserved I would have gladly cancelled their booking and used it myself or opened it back up to the public.  I realize that implementing booking fees won't eliminate that carelessness but it may help the stud owner by being able to collect a portion of that lost income.  It may even help us remember to cancel bookings if we were able to waive the booking fee if the spot is cancelled in a decent amount of time. 
How do you all feel about this?
Is it something that we can even consider?
« Last Edit: August 25, 2011, 05:07:10 PM by hollyh1125 » Logged
Shanthi
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« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2011, 06:16:48 PM »

I don't think it's been suggested. I'd be willing to consider adding it to the rewrite, if people thought the idea was worth adding to the game. Generally fees are pretty unpopular, though. ;)
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2011, 06:37:28 PM »

Yes, I do realize that.  Generally I'm not for fees myself. :) Though, in this case the fee will only impact those who don't follow through with previous commitments.  I think it's close to real life as well because it will take the place of a breeding contract and make mare owners more responsible for their breedings.  I feel a fair fee for a "broken contract" would be 15-30% of the stud fee.
I'm open to suggestions!  I would also like to hear non-stallion owners points of view as well.  Do you feel as a mare owner you should be responsible for your reserved stud slots?  Keeping in mind it takes time and effort to make sure a slot is blocked and reserved for certain mares and stables.;)
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Grace Littlef
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« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2011, 07:29:52 PM »

I think it's a good idea, I gave someone a multi mare discount on 3 mares, and after the first 2 were bred she cancelled the last breeding without notifying me,and the way I had done the discount I was out the more expensive fee. I felt she should have paid the difference in the discount I had given her between 2 & 3.(2- $1k off, 3- $4k off ,of a $8k stud fee)
I think a small reservation fee would be good, and you could always subtract it from the stud fee. If a horses fee is $8k , say a fee of $500 ( or less) , then when bred the fee could be deducted from that making it $7,500. That's just my take on it. Next yr mine will all be by approval due to this, and all horses will have same fees/discounts. Especially if you spend the money to nominate the foal crops on the studs.
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2011, 07:44:01 PM »

That's a good point.  I had not given thought to multi-mare discounts and the follow through that has to take place for it to be worth it. Unfortunately, we don't realize these things can happen until they do.  And yes, my thought on the booking fee was that it would be taken from the breeding fee, not in-addition-to.
Though, I feel a flat fee of 500 or less may not be worth the trouble nor change a mare owners mind if they decide not to use your stud.  I would rather like to see a percentage.  Say in the case of Shanthi's, Highland Wizard, his stud fee is 75K.  If someone reserves a slot to him, a $500 booking fee won't cause them to stop and think if they decide not to use the slot, but if it were 15-30 percent ($11,250-$22,500), then they may take the time to let Shanthi know that they don't intend to use the slot, potenially refunding the booking fee if cancelled far enough in advance (if a cancellation time frame is implemented).  This way even if she isn't notified she still gets some money to go towards BC nominations/loss of income/loss of a potential foal.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2011, 07:56:50 PM by hollyh1125 » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2011, 07:44:54 PM »

I think a small reservation fee would be good, and you could always subtract it from the stud fee.
If it's done this way I would agree that it would help protect stallion owners from careless or thoughtless members. Though if meant as a deterrent then I think  30% deposit is probably a decent sum. However I hope no one wants a booking fee as well as a stud fee as i would not be very happy with that :-)
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2011, 08:03:52 PM »

Quote
If it's done this way I would agree that it would help protect stallion owners from careless or thoughtless members. Though if meant as a deterrent then I think  30% deposit is probably a decent sum. However I hope no one wants a booking fee as well as a stud fee as i would not be very happy with that :-)
The way I was intending the fee to be taken was not as a "deposit" but as a fee in the case of an unused breeding slot reservation. No money would be taken from a members account until the mare is bred or the time frame for the breeding slot has passed. And yes it would be taken from the breeding fee, not in-addition-to. ;)
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2011, 08:12:07 PM »

Also, on a side note, there will always be circumstances beyond our control like an over-due mare or mare death.  In these cases I feel it's obvious the mare owner would not be charged a booking fee.
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Shanthi
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« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2011, 08:38:34 PM »

"True" booking fees are that: paid upon booking. So I would think that you would pay the fee (whatever it is) when you actually arrange the booking (or when the stud owner approves your request if the stud's approval-only). Then once you press "Breed this mare" you pay the remainder of the stud fee.

Then the tricky part becomes refunding in case of 1) overdue mare foaling (but only if the stud owner doesn't just move the mare to another slot) 2) changing studs to another one owned by the same farm (should the mare owner pay 2 booking fees just because they decided they liked Stud B better than Stud A, if they're both owned by Farm C?) 3) mare death.
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Shanthi
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« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2011, 08:41:23 PM »

Also with refunding, this should be an automatic process so that the mare owner doesn't have to wait around to get their money back if the stud owner's on vacation or something.

However...that means the stud owner basically has to keep those booking fees in their bank account sitting there until the booking has passed and they've been proven not to have to refund the fees. What happens if Stud Owner decides to spend all their money on a fancy horse, has $100 left in their account, and then Mare Owner's mare dies? Mare Owner wants their booking fee back, but Stud Owner is broke.
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2011, 09:19:17 PM »

Quote
"True" booking fees are that: paid upon booking. So I would think that you would pay the fee (whatever it is) when you actually arrange the booking (or when the stud owner approves your request if the stud's approval-only). Then once you press "Breed this mare" you pay the remainder of the stud fee.

I agree with this. :)

Quote
Then the tricky part becomes refunding in case of 1) overdue mare foaling (but only if the stud owner doesn't just move the mare to another
slot)


In the "arrange breedings for this stallion" page, would it be feasible to have a default button ("Refund Book Fee")beside each approved/booked mare that could be pressed and said amount will be refunded to the mare owner?  This would require special handling on the stallion owners part since all approved/booked mares would have this option, but at least this way it won't have to be so specialized?  Though, this would mean it wouldn't be automatic and a mare owner may have to wait to receive their discount.  Unless a system similar to the lease system is implemented such as the mare owner can request to receive a refund and if the stallion owner doesn't respond in X amount of time the refund is given unless the breeding date is passed then a refund would not be an option.

Quote
2) changing studs to another one owned by the same farm (should the mare owner pay 2 booking fees just because they decided they liked Stud B better than Stud A, if they're both owned by Farm C?)


I wouldn't think so.  I would say refund the booking fee then start fresh with the new stallion choice.

Quote
3) mare death

Automatic refund, right?

Quote
What happens if Stud Owner decides to spend all their money on a fancy horse, has $100 left in their account, and then Mare Owner's mare dies? Mare Owner wants their booking fee back, but Stud Owner is broke.

1) That would be very sad. ;) 2) I would make it so as long as all requirements have been met such as cancelling in "X" amount of time, mare was over due, and mare death, that the money will be refunded regardless and the stallion owner will go in to the negative and be given "X" amount of time to get out of bankruptcy.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2011, 09:23:37 PM by hollyh1125 » Logged
Shanthi
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« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2011, 07:47:57 AM »

In the "arrange breedings for this stallion" page, would it be feasible to have a default button ("Refund Book Fee")beside each approved/booked mare that could be pressed and said amount will be refunded to the mare owner?  This would require special handling on the stallion owners part since all approved/booked mares would have this option, but at least this way it won't have to be so specialized?  Though, this would mean it wouldn't be automatic and a mare owner may have to wait to receive their discount.  Unless a system similar to the lease system is implemented such as the mare owner can request to receive a refund and if the stallion owner doesn't respond in X amount of time the refund is given unless the breeding date is passed then a refund would not be an option.

If this were implemented, the refund part would have to be automatic. Mare owners are much more likely to be small, poor stables (than stallion owners), so are more likely to really need that booking fee refunded.

Though also, what happens if you decide at the last minute? You've booked in for stallion A on April 30, and April 29 you decide that stallion B (same owner) is much better. Stud owner is still scrambling trying to fill stallion A's booking at the last minute (though at least then they have a mare in stallion B's booking slot).
 
Quote
1) That would be very sad. ;) 2) I would make it so as long as all requirements have been met such as cancelling in "X" amount of time, mare was over due, and mare death, that the money will be refunded regardless and the stallion owner will go in to the negative and be given "X" amount of time to get out of bankruptcy.

What's "X"? You might be fine with 2 days' notice because you know you can breed one of your own mares in at the last minute. Another stallion owner might want 60 days' notice so they can go all-out advertising their stud.

I've tried to make it pretty hard to go bankrupt in the game. You can do it, certainly, but right now you can pretty much only lose money you have. With refunding bookings automatically, that opens up the possibility to lose money you don't have, which concerns me. Because you can only lose money you have, you can't really do much once you're bankrupt to get out of the hole.
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Starfish
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« Reply #12 on: August 26, 2011, 01:34:44 PM »

As a owner of a number of Stallions but who does occasionally use outside Stallions, I think that a "Deposit" (maybe 10-15%) is a good idea. If a problem arises e.g. mare overdue, mare dies, and the mare owner informs the Stallion owner, the Stallion owner can cancel the booking which would automatically (???) refund the "Deposit", however, if the mare owner forgets about the booking and misses the date (or, as I did once, much to my embarrassment, forget a booking and breed the mare to another Stallion), they would lose the Deposit.
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« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2011, 01:50:03 PM »

As a owner of a number of Stallions but who does occasionally use outside Stallions, I think that a "Deposit" (maybe 10-15%) is a good idea. If a problem arises e.g. mare overdue, mare dies, and the mare owner informs the Stallion owner, the Stallion owner can cancel the booking which would automatically (???) refund the "Deposit", however, if the mare owner forgets about the booking and misses the date (or, as I did once, much to my embarrassment, forget a booking and breed the mare to another Stallion), they would lose the Deposit.

That sounds great, except for having to rely on the stallion owner to cancel the booking. Real life gets in the way, computers die, internet goes out, etc. There are all sorts of reasons that someone would not log in for quite some time, in which case the mare owner is just SOL on their deposit, especially as breeding a mare cancels/deletes all other bookings, so the mare owner wouldn't be able to go forward with breeding the mare to another stallion.

One option would be to give various conditions for refunding deposits...maybe:
  • always (if you don't care that someone ditches the booking, at any time)
  • within X days of booking date (so if the booking is for April 10 and the mare owner ditches it on April 8, no refund. If they ditch it on April 1, automatic refund)
  • if I haven't logged in in the past X days (so if you know you're usually on 2x/week, set this to be, say, 7 days. If you don't login within 7 days of a mare owner requesting to cancel a booking, automatic refund)
  • new members only ??? (only offer refunds to new members)

That would be a lot more complicated to code, but would be more flexible.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2011, 02:16:06 PM by Shanthi » Logged
Shelbie
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« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2011, 04:21:34 PM »

I only own one stallion, but I do own a pretty healthy number of broodmares and personally I like the current system for the simple sake of simplicity. If my stallion loses a booking, oh well, an FF mare will probably fill the slot and if not, it's not like I'm relying heavily on stud fee income (I know FF mares are free breedings, but I'm more concerned with getting foals on the ground that will later reflect on the stallion when they hit racing age than I am with earning 1k a breeding right now).

I've tried reading all the above and am just flat-out confused over what's being proposed now, lol. What if a booking is dropped/canceled/never made and the stud owner is given the opportunity for a "backbreeding"? Meaning a slot HAD to be booked, a breeding was not done by that slot date, so the owner can either personally use it or offer that slot to the public and a mare could back-breed to that stud, using the slot?

Again, personally, I think if a slot is not filled, oh well, it happens. Chances are you still filled most of the other slots, but I may be in the minority here.
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« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2011, 04:47:12 PM »

I still think something needs to be implemented in the case of the person who basically gets away with a discount and then at the last second without notification cancels the last breeding and makes the stallion owner lose out for being nice. I will be changing my policies for next year as far as discounts go.
I was for the reservation fee, and now I'm even getting confused.I only ever canceled one and that was to one of drews studs during the sale,and bred to my own as I was getting short on cash, and at that time there wasn't an owner to notify.
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« Reply #16 on: August 26, 2011, 05:48:26 PM »

Again, personally, I think if a slot is not filled, oh well, it happens. Chances are you still filled most of the other slots, but I may be in the minority here.

That's my standpoint as well, personally. I'm more interested in having nice foals than making money, though, nor am I that worried if FF mares use my studs' spots because they don't get used (for whatever reason).

That said, I'm happy to brainstorm if people want to consider the option. Whether and when it gets implemented is another story. ;)
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Shanthi
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« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2011, 06:08:45 PM »

I still think something needs to be implemented in the case of the person who basically gets away with a discount and then at the last second without notification cancels the last breeding and makes the stallion owner lose out for being nice. I will be changing my policies for next year as far as discounts go.

If your concern is regarding discounts, I hope to set something up so that it's more automated with the rewrite. i.e. if you want to offer a multi-mare discount, the first booking would be full price, but the second would reflect the full discount. (So your stud's fee is $10,000 and you want 25% off for multiple mares. First booking: $10,000. Second booking: $5,000. Total is 25% off $20,000, but they only get the discount when they book in that second mare. If they never book the second mare, they never get the discount. If they book in a third mare, it's $7,500, because 75% of $30k is $22.5k and they've already paid $15k. Etc.)

New member discounts and mare quality discounts would be even easier, because that can be done on the first booking. (Any other types of discounts offered?)
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« Reply #18 on: August 26, 2011, 07:45:19 PM »

That sounds like a good set up, of course my horses are much cheaper than that. Lol . As far as the booking fee, I would rather have those spots filled with FF mares for no money to get some foals on the ground, than worry about refunds.also sometimes my bank account gets low and I pinch pennies, I'm sure some of the newer stables might be discouraged if we did have the fee. So I could go either way now after reading through it all again.
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Mintano
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« Reply #19 on: August 26, 2011, 11:02:38 PM »

Haven't really read through all the replies so don't know if this has been suggested but what about an alert for mare owners say a week before the booking date expires? I know I have accidentally missed bookings because I plain old forgot about them. It wouldn't stop booking dates from getting not used altogether but I think it would be a great help.
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #20 on: August 29, 2011, 08:34:39 PM »

Shanthi,
Quote
One option would be to give various conditions for refunding deposits...maybe:
« Last Edit: August 29, 2011, 08:38:47 PM by hollyh1125 » Logged
Mintano
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« Reply #21 on: August 29, 2011, 10:41:02 PM »

Mintano,
I agree, but I'm confused when you say you forget about your bookings.  Usually if you reserve a spot to a stud the stud owner takes time out to go into their stud page and reserve the spot making the booking visible on your mare page when you go to breed her.  In that case I don't feel bad about taking a booking fee because I feel if I take time out to make sure a mare has a booking the mare owner should retain the same courteousness (sorry if that's not a word...lol).

Sorry I sort of exagerated there, there's only 1 time I can remember that I've actually forgotten a booking which was one of your guys for a mare that had yet to be retired. I'd meant to retire her and breed her to that stallion but for whatever reason I forgot I'd made the booking and the time had passed. Yes it was my fault I should have made a note which I do all the time but for whatever reason forgot to do at that time. I have come close a few times though with missing bookings with mares that didn't foal out before a certain date.

I just think it would help cut down on a lot of missed bookings if you got an alert. "Mare has a booking to stallion that expires in 2 weeks". Especially if you book a mare that is still going to race a little bit more before retiring there is no Breed link on her page until she's been retired so unless you make a note there's no way for you to check that she's got a booking.
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #22 on: August 30, 2011, 06:23:03 PM »

Quote
I just think it would help cut down on a lot of missed bookings if you got an alert. "Mare has a booking to stallion that expires in 2 weeks". Especially if you book a mare that is still going to race a little bit more before retiring there is no Breed link on her page until she's been retired so unless you make a note there's no way for you to check that she's got a booking.
We do have alerts for mares who are not bred that show up on our stable page.  Also, when you have a stallion booking reserved to your stable in general that booking shows up on every mares breeding page as an option as long as the booking time hasn't yet past.  If I were to go breed a mare and saw I had a general booking to say, "Spock". I would know that I had reserved that spot and go make sure which mare it was for if I couldn't use it for the one I was currently breeding. Not that any of this matters since you feel a booking fee would "help", but just wanted to go into detail there a bit in case those alerts were getting over looked.  I never know how a certain page loads on different computers so I never know if some things are visible to everyone. 
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« Reply #23 on: August 30, 2011, 07:06:36 PM »

I'm leaning towards making this optional (similar to requiring approval for your stud). If you think booking fees are great and want to add one as part of your stud fee (not sure if the % would be customisable, but 25% sounds reasonable), great. If you don't care, that's cool, too. Likewise for mare owners - if you don't want to worry about getting refunds and whatnot, don't patronise studs that use booking fees.
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hollyh1125
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« Reply #24 on: August 30, 2011, 07:26:11 PM »

I think that sounds fair. :)
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