Creating A Wedding Budget You Can Afford
By: Alan Allport
The most important part of planning a wedding is setting your budget. Your budget is important because it is next to impossible to know what you can afford for each major part of the wedding if you don’t set an overall cost that is comfortable for you. You will probably find that deciding the budget is the hardest job to do because, of course, you want to have the best and most memorable wedding you can possibly have.
The days when the wedding was paid for by the parents of the bride are almost gone now. Parents will often contribute to the wedding cost as a gift to the couple, but it is pretty rare for parents to cover the whole cost of the wedding.
Usually this is because the parents simply can’t afford it. But couples today often prefer to pay for their own weddings because it ensures that they can plan them the way that they want to without interference.
These days, 4 out of 5 couples pay for their own wedding and it helps to know how your budget should be broken down.
When creating your budget, you will first begin with the overall amount that you can afford to spend. The average wedding today costs approximately $19,000. This is not a definite, but this is what the statistics currently show.
Now you will need to take that overall budget amount and split it percentage-wise for each major aspect of your wedding e.g. how much to spend on the wedding clothing, the rings, catering, decorating the venue etc. If you are not good at percentages, you can always utilize the Internet and check with the various websites that offer you free or cheap wedding budget calculators that will do it for you.
With these calculators, all that you have to do is input the total budget amount and then they will calculate for you how much money in dollars you will be able to spend on each component of your wedding.
Start the food line or meal as soon as possible. Guests plan their meal times the day of your wedding around your reception. Guest will not eat a big meal before your wedding because they know they will be eating at your reception. Don’t starve them.
Once you have figured out the dollar amount that you can spend on each component of the wedding, you can then begin to create a list itemizing everything.
You will need to put together a list of all the areas of your wedding that are important to you and make sure that you allocate a sensible proportion of the total budget to each.
Don’t get drunk and obnoxious. Keep in mind the only time brides and grooms eat during the wedding day rituals are at the wedding reception. There’s not much food in your stomach and alcohol will affect you much faster. Try and eat throughout the day and watch how much you drink. You want your guests to remember how beautiful the bride looked, not how you acted.
This is necessary so that you can see if the wedding of your dreams is a realistic expectation given what you can afford to spend. If you come up short, here are some ideas to enable you to trim the expenses:
- Reduce the size of the guest list
- Forego some of the services
- Reduce the size of the wedding party
- Forget the extras like limos
It is only by setting down on paper a budget you can afford and listing all of the areas that you have to spend money on that you can begin to refine your ideas on the type and scope of wedding that it is realistic for you to aim for.
Afterall, you will have plenty of expenses to cover after the wedding when starting out on your married life together. It just doesn’t make sense to create problems by over-stretching financially on the wedding.
About the Author
Alan Allport is Webmaster at http://www.wedding-source.best-gen.com where he has published a FREE Online guide to planning the perfect wedding on a budget