Budget Planning for Your Wedding

Regardless of the amount set aside in your budget, there is no need to be overwhelmingly stressed about finances when planning your wedding.  Instead, gather an understanding of how your funds should be allocated and begin breaking down each cost one step at a time. This simple process can help you take control of your money, your planning, and your sanity.  Here are a few tips to help you effectively manage your money through the planning process.

Ask for Help
Before you allocate funds into specific categories, find out exactly who plans to pay for what. While the conversation may be tricky, ask your family members if they plan to help and how. Have an open and honest discussion about what you need and be grateful for any amount they are willing to donate. It is important they commit to the amount offered before you begin planning specifics. If you are weary of their willingness to follow through, play it safe and start the process as if they were unable to take part financially.

Smart Allocation is Key
Gathering a broad idea of the amount to allocate in certain categories is essential before you commit to vendors. For example, roughly half of your budget will be designated for the wedding venue and catering. When you meet venue representatives, gather a cost breakdown of what is included and make sure it aligns with your financial plan. If not, no need to stress. Instead, find a venue more compatible with your savings. In the end, staying inside your budget creates less angst than spending more than you can actually afford. Here is how to start creating a practical wedding budget.

Manage Your Guest List Appropriately
Controlling the size of your guest list is an easy way to manage the overall cost of your wedding. Less people means less food and alcohol alongside a smaller venue space. This will also lead to savings on stationary, décor, and favors. Here are tips to keeping your guest list small.

Keep Track of What You Spend
Whether you have a wedding budget calculator or just love to create spreadsheets, keeping track of your spending is essential. Be sure to have a “miscellaneous” fund available for any unexpected cost that may arise and don’t forget gratuities and service fees. Here are some hidden wedding costs that catch people off guard.  If you have your heart set on something that you can DIY, give it a shot! You may open up funds to allocate in areas that were otherwise neglected.

How to Start a Wedding Budget

Congratulations, you are finally engaged and we know you are eager to jump into planning!  But, before you get too far ahead, make sure that your dream wedding and your wallet are in sync.  This is the most dreaded part of the process, but we can help you get started with a few simple steps.

How much do you have available to spend?

Perhaps you have been saving since you and the groom started dating, or maybe now it is time to begin.  Keep in mind, that sometimes there are resources available to help fund your special day.  Are your parents, future in-laws, grandparents, or anyone else planning to offer a contribution?  If so, make sure you know what to expect before you start spending their cash too!  Also, tread lightly when asking for money from family.  Be sure that you use a tactful approach and be understanding if they are not willing or able to help.

Prioritize the “must haves”

If your wedding can’t take place without a chocolate fountain, we understand.  Just make sure that you have a list of the other “must haves” before you sign a contract with the vendor.  It is possible that certain details can cost more than originally anticipated. Here is a guide of wedding and reception necessities that should be accounted for:

  1. Venue
  2. Catering
  3. Officiant fee
  4. DJ / Band
  5. Wedding Gown and accessories / Groom’s attire
  6. Wedding rings
  7. Invitations
  8. Flowers
  9. Marriage license
  10. Photographer / Videographer
Start Crunching Numbers

Now that you have a list of what should be included, get a general idea of what each item will cost and create a spreadsheet.  Then you can add personal details where you see fit, or downscale the things you can live without.  Choosing a few DIY options will allow flexibility to add funds in other areas too.  Just make sure you anticipate any hidden wedding costs that may surprise you!

It is important to understand that your wedding is unique.  Your budget will not look like any other.  Be creative and add a personal flare that your guests will remember!