HOW TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING BUDGET
Money is the number one thing that married couples fight about. Do you realise that the tension surrounding money begins long before the happy couple says 'I do?' Wedding costs can escalate out of control. It's essential to start planning a realistic budget. Once the numbers are crunched, it's equally important to stick to the budget.
While a wedding budget doesn't sound glamorous, it doesn't have to be wrong. Planning your wedding without a budget is almost guaranteed to land you severe financial debt. What's the key to success?
Newly-engaged couples must talk about how each envisions their special day. Women work on the assumption that guys don't care about the details, but that's not always true. It is, after all, the man's big day, too, and he has a family to please as well.
Once the excitement of the engagement wears off, go somewhere quiet and talk about what's important to each of you regarding your wedding day. I want you to know that listening to your partner's opinion is as important as talking, so be sure to do both. Then, make a list of what you both want (to arrive in a horse-drawn carriage, lobster, renaissance theme, colour scheme, etc.) and what are absolute necessities (for example, a photographer, caterer, flowers, venue hire etc.). You will use this information when it's time to allocate your budget.
Once you both know what's important, it's time to crunch the numbers. You've got to determine how much money is available now (for example, in savings accounts, stocks/bonds, real estate, trust funds), how much you'll have to commit to saving from your regular income streams, and how much you can realistically expect others to kick in. Depending on how far out the actual wedding date is, you may want to consider opening a higher-interest bearing account for the money so that it can earn interest.
Have a look at the average spend on the top wedding costs in 2022:
- Wedding Venue Hire – £8,000
- Wedding Dress - £1,500
- Wedding Photography - £1,000
- Groom's Attire - £500
- Catering per head - £60
- Bridal hair - £70
- Bridal makeup - £70
When considering what others may be able to put towards the cause, it's vital that you don't make unrealistic demands. Take whatever others are willing to contribute graciously and try not to belabour the issue. Getting angry or disappointed in the amounts you are being given isn't a very mature way of handling the situation.
When you know where the money's coming from, you'll learn how much you'll be able to spend. Could you list wedding-related expenses and allocate a dollar amount or percentage to each item? This will help you when you're contracting. If you exceed your budgeted amount in one category, you'll have to scale back another to stay balanced.
Things couples tend to forget to account for during wedding planning
- Marriage licence/registrar fees
- Wedding insurance
- Wedding stationery
- Bachelorette and Stag party costs
- Post-wedding clean-up costs
- Outfit alterations
- Hotel room the night before the wedding
- Honeymoon activities (skydiving or boat hire)
- Post-wedding stationery & gifts
Because budgeting is essential for most couples, you'll find that printable wedding planners often include wedding budget templates, so start using them now!
FAQ - FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is it worth getting a wedding planner?
It depends on your personality and how much work you want to put into your wedding. If you're a person who enjoys planning every little detail, you probably don't need a wedding planner. But if you would instead enjoy your engagement and relax on your wedding day, then hiring a planner is worth it. A good wedding planner will take care of everything from booking vendors to ensuring the day runs smoothly. They can also be an excellent resource for advice and ideas and help you stay within your budget. So hiring a professional planner is the way to go if you're looking to have a stress-free wedding day.
What does a wedding planner do?
A wedding planner coordinates all the details of a client's wedding. This can include finding a venue and working with caterers to organise the music and flowers. A good wedding planner will be able to handle every aspect of the planning process, from start to finish, ensuring that the bride and groom can relax and enjoy their big day.
How much should you spend on a wedding planner?
There's no simple answer to this question, as the amount you'll need to spend on a wedding planner will vary depending on your specific needs and budget. However, you can generally expect to pay around 10-15% of your total wedding budget on a good wedding planner in the UK. So, if you're planning a £20,000 wedding, you should expect to spend at least £2,000 on a planner. Of course, you can always find cheaper options - but remember that this is one of the most important days of your life, so it's worth spending enough to get someone who can ensure everything goes off without a hitch!
What is the difference between a wedding planner and a coordinator?
A wedding planner is more like a project manager, while a coordinator handles the day-of logistics.
A wedding planner typically starts working a couple of months before the wedding date and is responsible for overseeing all the vendors and ensuring everything comes together on schedule. They usually have a vast knowledge of weddings, from venues to flowers to photographers.
A coordinator typically starts working with the couple only a few weeks before the wedding and is responsible for ensuring all the details (like timing, transportation, and vendor coordination) are handled on the wedding day. They usually don't have as much experience or knowledge about different aspects of weddings as a wedding planner does.
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