Monday Mailbag – Who Pays for New Student Music?

When you get $200+ worth of new music for your students, do you then have them purchase each one or how do you do that?

At this point, I purchase all the new music for my students. Several years ago, I instituted a registration fee of $50 that is due by the 1st of August for any students planning to take lessons that year. That fee reserves their spot, covers the cost of the custom-designed practice journal that goes along with our practice incentive theme for the year, offsets various administrative costs, and also includes any music that I purchase for them to keep or to borrow from my lending library. I don’t itemize how each student’s $50 is spent, but I’m sure if I did, I would discover that it’s not quite covering the costs I’m incurring for them. But at this point, the arrangement is working okay for us.

At some point, I would like to invoice the students for the specific music I purchase for them. This would be incredibly easy since I use Music Teacher’s Helper for my billing program. All it would entail is me adding a fee to the student’s account and listing the book titles. Then when the automatic invoices are sent at the beginning of the next month, the student/parent would see the balance due, including the book cost, and would just write a check or complete on-line payment for all of it. This is my ideal scenario, but I’m not quite there yet! Anyone else want to weigh in on how you handle acquiring new music for your students? I’d sure love to know what works (or doesn’t work!) well for you!

Remember, if you have a question you’d like to contribute to next week’s Monday Mailbag, leave it in the comments below or send me an e-mail sometime this week with Monday Mailbag in the subject line!

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