A wedding day is supposed to be one of the best days of your life. However, it is also why many people get buried in debt to make it happen. According to a survey, 21% of Americans have gone into debt to finance their wedding. Most people usually point to social expectations and family pressures as the reasons behind taking loans to pay for their wedding.
This blog aims to help you understand that you don’t need to go over your wedding budget and get into a financial crunch. Likewise, you don’t need to stress yourself by taking a ton of debt to impress people. It can be very difficult spending the first few years of your married life trying to dig yourself out of the financial hole. There are tons of ways to plan a memorable wedding that you and your partner will be proud of without having to break the bank.
Here are some wedding budgeting tips to help you stay on track.
1. Start saving early
Getting married is something that everyone thinks about at least once in their life. However, if you plan to get married, “let’s say in 5 years,” it is better to start saving now. If you start saving with a 5-year plan in mind, the pressure will be less when the actual wedding planning begins. In addition, it will save you a lot of stress during the planning process by lessening the temptation of relying on credit cards and bank loans.
2. Set a budget
Most weddings go out of the budget because there isn’t a set budget and proper planning. Things usually get out of control when the expenditures are not appropriately planned during the wedding planning phase. Therefore, it is better to sit down with your partner or parents and set a minimum and maximum budget for the wedding. A serious conversation regarding the budget is imperative for all the parties involved in the wedding.
Make a plan with two budgets, a minimum one that is the least amount of money you want to spend and a maximum one where all your initial savings for the wedding is utilized. Your goal should be to target somewhere in the middle, where you still save enough money from your wedding budget.
3. Identifying the non-negotiables
One of the most challenging parts of planning a wedding is that many things are crucial. If you lack in articulating these items from the beginning, it could be a breeding ground for resentments and arguments.
We suggest you talk to your future spouse about the non-negotiables for your big day. Both of you need to understand each other, and it will help you prioritize where you can cut back and where you can spend your money, without hurting any one’s feelings.
4. Minimize the guest list
Minimizing the guest list is the easiest way to keep the wedding costs down. The reason is simple, the more people you invite, the larger the venue and food expenses. If your guest list keeps creeping up, take a serious look at it and separate people into an “A” group and a “B” group. After you send out the invites to the “A” list, you’ll see how many people cannot make it. Then, you can grab that number of people from the “B” list and send them invitations.
5. Stick to a small wedding party
If you are on a mission to save money and align your budget in the right direction, a big wedding party would add a lot to the overall budget. For example, if you have four to five bridesmaids, think about how much it will cost you to pay for hair, dresses, makeup, gifts, etc. Having a larger bridal party also could mean you need a bigger transportation vehicle to bring people from location to location, like a party bus instead of a simple shuttle.
6. Have the reception at a restaurant
Most people spend a significant chunk of money on the wedding reception. Paying for a fancy venue with dinner and open bar is not cheap, especially if you carry an extensive guest list. With a smaller guest list, you could rent out a party room at a restaurant, or even rent out the whole restaurant! We’ve seen our couples have an intimate wedding with 50 people at a small restaurant, with a small dance floor and iPod as a sound system.
Planning a wedding is personal and different things are important to different people. But, above all, you can figure out the non-negotiables for you and your partner and create a budget that fits your pocket and does not break the bank. You can always get in touch with professionals like us to help you save time on all the legwork. We will even help you create a personalized list of wedding vendors for FREE!