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Creating your Wedding Budget

12 Months Before your Wedding: Creating your Wedding Budget

Making sure that you have the necessary capital to pull off you’re the night of your life exactly to your liking takes planning and communication. Without both an underwhelming, or worse, some serious debt will forever overshadow your wedding day. So, to avoid paying off wedding debt at a time where timing and resources are so important, we’ve given you all the necessary steps to take to ensure your financial freedom in wedlock. 

Who’s Paying? 

Communication is key: Now that you’ve tied the knot, an ensuing conversation involving both families will be necessary to go over the financing of the wedding. While a traditional wedding budget is going to be mostly covered by the family of the bride, a more modern couple may choose to share the expense between partners. Since most brides are employed full-time, it may be apparent to you that seeking help from both parents is unnecessary, and you’d rather avoid receiving help from either set of parents because you won’t be forced to forfeit one or more aspects of your wedding to your parents’ will (i.e. spots on the guest list, venue selection, etc.). It is important to consider whether you are planning on continuing in a family, or cultural, tradition or whether you want to be progressive in your expense plan.  

Here are some approaches to deciding how you are going to divvy up your expenses: 

- Come up with an amount for you and your partner 

- Ask both sets of parents to pledge a specific amount 

- Assign specific expenditures to the parents (such as flowers, cake or both) 

How Much Do You Really Need? 

The average national cost of a traditional wedding is around $34,000 and depending on where you and your partner have decided to put most of your funds, that number can divert extremely. That’s why creating a small list of 3 areas where you and your partner can choose to grant more money to and a list of 3 areas where you would like to be more conservative with your spending. 

Normally, most of your wedding funds are going to be put towards 3 main elements that are essential to a successful and fun wedding:  

- The reception (58%-60%) 

- Attire/Photography and Videography (18%-20%) 

- Flowers (8%-10%) 

Also, for reassurance, 5% of your budget should be set aside for a “rainy day,” or in the case that everything goes as planned, it will be a nice surprise when you are on your honeymoon. 

 

Click HERE to Download your Traditional Wedding Checklist

Researching Wedding Deals

Researching vendors and pursuing price quotes is crucial to creating a budget that will be within your limits. For example, you may only think that flowers will be a relatively cheap and simple decision, when in-reality there are many factors like location, variety of flowers, types of flowers, and flower décor, that can raise the average price anywhere from $500 to $1,100. Since the reality is that there will be many of these seemingly costly expenses, it is a good idea to keep them organized. The EventDone app provides a tool where it will be easy to update and compare costs between vendors.

Create a Mock Guest List

Remember, with every person you add to your guest list comes a per-head cost for food and liquor (there will be more expenses tied to each person but these two are generally the most expensive). And yes, that does include every former or current boss, people with whom you work, family friends and even friends of friends, no matter how well you know them or if you’ve only seen them once at your cousin’s bar mitzvah, they will come with their own personal expense that is included in the final cost.

Consider the Setting 

It is a fact that having a wedding on the beaches of Pedregal, Mexico, in the gardens of Leeds Castle in England, on the Tribeca Rooftop in New York City or at the Helena Bay Lodge in remote New Zealand will affect the price dramatically. Likewise, so will certain dates and times. Highly sought-after dates and seasons, including days of the week and time of day, will be pricier for obvious reasons. It will be a good idea to refer to your mock-guest list to consider what size venue you will be needing.

Save Save Save 

A costly wedding can introduce unnecessary tension into a newly-formed marriage so saving money every step along the way is a good way to ensure a smooth and amicable transition into the honeymoon and life as a partner from life as an individual. Since there are many steps that go into planning a wedding as well as many places that saving money is possible and easy. Some simple (yet overlooked) areas where money can be saved include: substituting expensive flowers for cheaper, local, in-season flowers, simplifying your dinner menu, ordering a small and fabulous cake and having several sheet cakes of the same flavor for the guests, reselling and reusing clothing, and prioritizing 3 areas where you want to allocate the most money towards. Use these methods and any other ways you see fit to save money on your big night.  

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