The Wedding Budget, Hang In There

Okay, you’ve made a decision to take the plunge. Well, actually two of you made that decision. But now comes the hard part. How much will all this cost? Do you want to invite every person you’ve ever known to the wedding, or reduce the amount of wedding guests to just include close family and friends? This is a tough question to answer. Just remember, the more wedding guests, the more wedding favors, larger cake, etc. never-mind adding that per plate dinner charge.

If you don’t know it by now, you will learn very quickly, that weddings have become big business. Now, please understand, I’m not against that. A couple of years ago, we gave my daughter and her fiancé a very large, very beautiful wedding.

(Unfortunately, we did not have such wonderful wedding favors to choose from at that point!) And it was an event that we will forever cherish and forever remember. But, we learned the hard way, that there are many decisions that are made, even last minute, that will turn your wedding day into a financial burden that you may keep paying for years to come.view this site

Considering all of the above, let’s start at the beginning and discuss how to make a wedding budget. We’re not just talking about your wedding “day”, but your entire wedding budget – every category including the bridal gifts, wedding cake, gown, tux, limos, wedding favors, wedding photographer/videographer, etc. etc. etc. But, for the parents who are reading this, there is good news.

Okay, back to setting up a budget. This is not very exciting and actually pretty boring, though using a wedding budget calculator can make all the difference. Once you’ve become engaged, you will have romantic thoughts of bridal showers, engagement parties, wedding gowns/tux, honeymoon, and of course, the bridal shower favors, and unique wedding favors!

We’re sure you’re not at all excited about sitting down with your future life mate and discussing how much this is going to cost both of you. That can take the wind out of the most exciting wedding plans! But, honestly, this budget should be set up with a wedding budget calculator before $1.00 is spent. If you do not set up a budget, you will end up spending two to three times what you planned on.

First things first. Decide how much you can spend, whether you have the cash, need to charge certain items or whether or not you both feel to take out a loan and then pay it off with the (fingers crossed) large financial gifts you’ll receive.

Secondly, you HAVE to decide on a theme. Try one of the many tools available nowadays like the wedding color picker. If you don’t, then you will be tempted to make impulse buys, and your budget will begin to soar. Not to mention that your wedding will also look like every other wedding that you’ve gone to, and sworn up and down that yours will NEVER be like that!

Thirdly, if you don’t set a budget and do not decide on a theme, then the day after you get married, you/your fiancé/parents/friends, etc. will all be tempted to book the banquet hall, run out and buy a wedding dress, etc. Usually when these impulse decisions are made, there is much regret, and you soon find that you are stuck with something you never really wanted.

Now, down to basics. The wedding reception will account for about 50% of your wedding budget. Be careful! Choose where you will have your reception wisely! Once you place money down, you usually will lose it if you decide to cancel. Also, after you narrow down your choices, be VERY careful! Always ask what is included – cake, bartenders, waiters, security people, valet parking, coat room attendant, etc. There are many hidden costs here that can send your wedding budget soaring. Okay, now that I’ve convinced you to draw up a budget, let’s get started. Come up with a total budget figure. Then use these percentages as a guideline.see page from

Wedding reception = 50%
Bride’s attire = 10%
Photography/videography = 10%
Music = 10%
Flowers = 10%
Invitations/postage = 4%
Other expenses = 6%

Wedding Parties: Engagement, Bridesmaid’s Lunch, Rehearsal Dinner, Bridal Shower, Bridal Shower Favors

Stationary: Wedding Invitations, (Announcements, Thank You Cards, Reply Cards), Stamps, Calligraphy (if desired)

Bridal Attire: Wedding Dress, Headpiece/Veil, Shoes, Accessories, Undergarments, Hairdresser, Make-up, Nails, Pedicure, Trousseau, Alterations
Photography/Videography: Formal Portraits, Engagement, Wedding and Reception, Wedding Album, Parents’ Albums, Extra Prints, Videographer of Wedding.

Wedding BudgetFlowers: Ceremony Arrangements, Unity Candle (Optional), Bride’s Bouquet, Groom’s Boutonniere,
Bridesmaids/Groomsmen, Mothers’ Corsages, Reception Arrangements
Reception: Food/Caterer, Drinks, Wedding Cake, Facility Rental, Place Cards, Wedding Favors, Decorations, Tips

Music/Entertainment: Ceremony, DJ or Band
Transportation: Limousines, Parking, Valet Parking
Gifts: Maid/Matron of Honor, Bridesmaids/Flower Girls, Bride’s Parents, Groom’s Parents
Honeymoon: Travel (Airplane, etc.), Cruise, Accommodations, Enjoyment Money, Rental Car
DON’T CANCEL THE WEDDING! (Thought you’d need a laugh at this point!)

You can cut all of the “non-essentials” from the above list. Or cut out a few of the guests you really didn’t want to invite anyway! Remember, PLAN before you buy. Decide on a THEME before you go into a binding contract for a banquet hall. DO NOT buy on impulse.

One last word to the wise. This is your wedding. Enjoy it. Hopefully it will be the last time you do this. So enjoy the moments. Even when it gets crazy, and you feel you’ve gotten in over your head financially. This too shall pass. In the meantime, why not create your very own wedding website so that your guests can keep track of your up-and-coming dream day?

Good luck and God bless!

How to Create and Stick to a Wedding Budget

Your wedding day has the potential to be the single most expensive day of your life. It is imperative that you carefully consider your wedding budget with a wedding budget calculator to avoid making costly mistakes that could hurt your long term financial future with your new spouse. Before you pick up a wedding magazine or brochure, it is important to organize a budget which will guide you through the rest of your wedding planning. This may seem like a monumental task at first, but by following the few simple steps outlined below, you will find that before long you have a solid budget.

Using a wedding budget calculator, the first step in budget planning is figuring out who will be contributing to your wedding fund and how much each party will be contributing. In the past, the bride’s parents paid most of the wedding bill, but as the price of the average wedding increases, many couples contribute to the money themselves or get assistance from the groom’s parents, as well as relying on extended family. If you are paying for the whole wedding yourself figuring out how much you want to spend may be as easy as looking at your bank account and seeing how much you can afford.

Alternatively, you may want to determine a set amount to put aside from each week’s paycheck to put towards the expenses of your wedding. Setting up a concrete amount to set aside, such as $100 a week from both the bride and groom’s paycheck, will give you a solid timetable to work with. If you want to raise $10,000 for your wedding, you can put aside $200 a week for 1 year or $100 a week for two years. Just saying you want to save $10,000 and not having a plan for how to do it is setting yourself up for failure.

By using a wedding budget calculator, you can make a concrete plan and stick to it, unless you have a financial emergency. If your parents or other relatives are contributing to your wedding fund, you will need to discuss with them how much they can afford to gift. In the best case scenario, your relatives will immediately let you know how much they’re willing to offer without you broaching the topic. However, if they do not commit to a particular number, you will need to discuss with them what they’re willing to spend. It is impossible to plan a true budget unless you know exactly how much money you have to work with.get more updates from

Your next step should be investigating local wedding costs. Not all wedding locations are created equal in terms of price. A wedding in New York City will inevitably be far more expensive than one in a small town in Iowa. Although many websites publish figures for the “average” cost of a wedding, these statistics are usually heavily skewed by the large percentage of people who live in large cities where weddings tend to cost more.

If local costs far outweigh your budget you may want to think about delaying your wedding date so you can raise more money. If you live an expensive market, you may to move your wedding to a more affordable spot. Couples living in a city may want to consider having their wedding in a nearby suburb, having a destination wedding, or having the wedding in the bride or groom’s hometown.

Next, you will need to decide where the money you allocated in the first step will be spent. If you performed the research required in the step two, you will already know the typical wedding cost in your area. Consider using The Knot’s Budgeter or a similar tool to figure out approximately what percentage of your budget should be spent where.

wedding planThe percentages used on these tools are meant to be rough guidelines, not hard fast rules. Make a list of the most important elements in your wedding and plan to allocate a higher percentage to those factors than your budget calculator suggests. At the same time, make a list of elements of a wedding you find less important and decrease the percentage you plan to spend on those items.

This will allow you to splurge on items you really want while budgeting less for elements that are of little or no importance to you. You may not need all the items mentioned on your budgeter. Cross the item items you don’t need off the list and redistribute the percentage devoted to that particular item elsewhere. You should leave a 5-10% cushion for unexpected costs.

If you get through your wedding and still haven’t used that extra money, you’ll have extra money to spend on an extra splurge. To help you along the way, why not create a wedding website – you never know, it could help you make big savings and offer some great information and photos of your big day!

How to Achieve Your Wedding Budgeting Goals

Wedding budgeting is the all important first step in planning your wedding, these needs to be completed before everything else to avoid running into potential financial problems. Your wedding day is one of the happiest days of your life, but there is no need to put yourself into debt just so you can make it perfect. There are literally endless possibilities for cutting back on your wedding expenses. All you need is proper planning and the determination to stick to your budget.

To start your wedding budgeting the right way, you will have to first get a rough estimate of the total amount that needs to be set aside for the big day, by using a wedding budget calculator. Are the two of you going to cover the entire cost of the wedding or are you going to get some help from both families? Pool together all of the contributions if there are any, and come up with the total amount.

Break down the wedding expenses into different categories, then decide for yourself which areas are important enough to splurge and which ones you don’t mind cutting back on. Always remember to set aside a little extra for hidden expenses such as taxes, tip, dress alterations, overtime and other unexpected circumstances.

Having a really formal wedding will often be quite expensive; costs of everything from the venue to the food and dress are expected to put a dent in your wallet. A wonderful way to cut down on the costs will be to have a semi-formal or even casual wedding. If you don’t mind going with the less formal options, you will end up saving a lot of money.

As well as using a wedding budget calculator, another wedding budgeting tip for cutting back costs is to reduce the size of the guest list. The less people you invite, the smaller the venue, the less you will have to spend on catering, cake, wedding favors, invitations, etc. On average it will cost around $100 per guest, so just think how much money you will be saving once you start narrowing down the list. You can also make it a rule to eliminate the +1 option unless it’s absolutely necessary.

The wedding planning process involves dealing with many vendors, most of which cater exclusively to the wedding industry. However, these vendors tend to charge a lot more for their products or services, because they are expected to be able to handle all kinds of situations that might arise due to experience dealing with other weddings.

Vendors that specialize in weddings can often charge an obscene amount for items that can be bought for much less elsewhere. A great wedding budgeting tip is to shop at your local discount warehouse store for deep discounts on items such as jewelry, wedding invitations, flowers, cakes and some even have honeymoon travel packages at discount prices. Read more info coming from

Something else you might want to look into are all inclusive packages, which will typically combine the venue, catering, music, decorations and sometimes even photography and videography services. There is no need to seek out individual vendors which will save you both time and money.

There are many other wedding budgeting tips you can use to hold a less expensive wedding. Take a look at some examples of creative ways to save.

Music – Instead of hiring a band which includes pay for each member plus the cost of moving the equipment, you can hire a DJ or even hook up your laptop to the speakers and create your own wedding mix.

Food – Food is a very important part of the reception, but it doesn’t have to be too extravagant, limit the number of courses served and choose menu options that are both in season and grown locally.

Beverages – Open bars can be extremely expensive, choose a signature drink instead and limit the amount served for each table.

Photography – As an alternative to hiring a professional wedding photographer, you can give out disposable cameras and have friends and family capture the best moments for you.

Flowers – Avoid exotic flowers, choose flowers that are in season and are commonly found in local flower shops

Wedding Cake – The cake that your guests end up eating does not necessarily have to be the same cake used in your photographs. Instead of ordering an over the top cake, choose one that is smaller and serve your guests sheet cake that’s designed to match.

Wedding Budgeting GoalsWedding Dress – If you have a wedding dress that was passed down in the family, you can have it altered to create a totally unique and modern design. You can also shop at bridal emporiums and get a ready to wear wedding dress in your exact size to avoid the cost of alterations at expensive bridal boutiques.

Rent & Borrow – There are many things that do not necessarily have to be bought for the wedding, if there is a possibility of renting or borrowing then go with that option instead.

Do It Yourself – Be resourceful and get your loved ones to help out. A lot things can be done by yourself, it’s becoming more and more popular to DIY wedding invitations, decorations for the reception, hair and makeup, floral arrangements, and even the wedding cake.

Wedding Website – A wedding website can be useful in a number of ways, from managing your RSVPs to informing your guests about important details of your wedding. Plan your own wedding easily with this handy tool and use it as a virtual photo album to share with friends and family instead of having actual photographs printed and sent.