Don’t Start Your New Life Together in Debt
The average cost of a wedding these days in the United States is around $25,200. That’s not a small number, but to be honest, a lot of brides want to spend quite a bit more for this once in a lifetime event. There are so many different details to remember when planning out a wedding budget that the whole process can seem a bit daunting. If you miscalculate the number of guests or forget something like including the cost of cutlery and dishes, you and your betrothed may end up spending the rest of your lives climbing out of debt.
We’ve put together a few easy ways for you to organize that wedding budget so you don’t end up starting your life together in the red.
Setting Your Budget
Before you decide on which caterer you want or the dress you’re going to wear, you have to figure out just how much money you’re willing to spend. You can’t organize something that doesn’t exist. Just remember that however much you do decide to spend, you should do everything your power not to go over that number. In fact, you may want to set aside a backup budget that will give you a little wiggle room for wedding planning emergencies.
Set Your Limits
What we mean by setting limits is a little bit more involved than setting your actual budget. The budget as a whole will cover any and all expenses associated with the wedding while the limits you set will be for each specific aspect of the planning process. Most couples tend to spend about 50% of their budget on the reception as it will include the cost of the venue, food and beverages from the catering company, the wedding cake, seating, tables, and even the wait staff.
Put it On Paper
Even if you have a number set in your head that you don’t want to exceed for planning your wedding, if you don’t put it down on paper, it will be much more difficult to stick to it. Once you dole out a certain percentage to each part of your wedding, like the attire, floral arrangements, and entertainment, put it in a guide that you will carry around everywhere you go. It gives you something that you can refer to anytime you stop into a potential wedding vendor. If you feel like you’re getting a great deal from one vendor and they come in under your set amount for that service, you may be able to spend a bit more somewhere else, or just save it for the honeymoon!
Save Receipts and Contracts
While it doesn’t happen very often, there are still plenty of horror stories floating around about couples getting blindsided by hidden fees or by vendors backing out at the last moment. This is why it is absolutely imperative that you keep a hard copy of all contracts. Make sure you read them thoroughly before signing them so you can’t be surprised on the big day by shelling out for costs you weren’t expecting. These little hidden fees that are often kept in the fine print are more than enough to break your budget.
By keeping your receipts, you also won’t run the risk of being double charged by an unscrupulous vendor that is just trying to milk it for everything you’ve got. If they come to you saying it’s time to pay up, you can just show the receipt as your proof of payment.
Your wedding is going to be an amazing day that you and your bride or husband-to-be will remember for the rest of your lives. Just make sure you’re not paying for it for the rest of your lives by going into the wedding planning process as organized as you possibly can. Your future and your wallet are depending on it!
Image Credit: freedigitalphotos.net/Stuart Miles