Now that you have said yes, it is time for the dreaded WB…Wedding Budget. Sure, everyone has dreamed of their fairy tale wedding but making it a reality is another thing. Sitting down to talk wedding budget is always a bit of a bubble bursting moment. It can force you to come to terms with what is realistic and what is down right impossible.
We recommend that before you get ahead of yourself on the planning you need to sit down and have a conversation with your significant other and family about who is helping with it all. This will save you time and heartache in the long run if you keep your head.
So who is going to pay for this momentous event?
Traditionally, the bride’s parents are responsible for the wedding reception. Of recent years more and more events are being paid for by the couple and both sides of the family. It is important to have some rough figures and ideas pulled together before you sit down for a “meeting of the families” to avoid conflicts. We recommend “making them an offer they can’t refuse”. Get the families together for a nice home cooked meal and breaking of the bread (if possible). This will give everyone a chance to share in your joy and relax a bit. After a delicious meal you can then dip into the conversation and hopefully come to some agreement. Whatever you do, don’t blindside your loved ones with this conversation. Take time to prep for the meeting and prep your family for the discussion, we promise you, the effort will be noted and appreciated by all.
Here is a typical (traditional) breakdown. Please, by all means, use this and make it your own. Each couples situation is unique and needs tweaking.
Wedding costs paid by the Bride and her family:
Ceremony/Reception Space Rental Fee
Flowers and Decor
Food, Cake, and Entertainment
Groom’s Wedding Ring
Transportation to and from ceremony and reception
Wedding costs paid by the Groom and his family:
Marriage license and Officiant
Tux Rental or other attire for the Groom
Alcohol for the Wedding Reception
Bride’s Wedding Rings
Another option is to pull together a total wedding budget and have everyone pool the funds for a complete payout. This is beneficial for couples who have divorced parents or want contributing parties to feel like they worked together on the overall success of the wedding.
Costs Incurred by the Wedding Party:
Wedding Party Attire (dresses, tux rental, shoes and accessories)
Bridal Shower and Bachelor/Bachelorette party
– Don’t forget to add in sales tax and gratuities. These can be a hefty amount once you put everything together. Again, estimating these items in your overall wedding budget will help you be aware of the target you have in mind.
– Give yourself some cushion. Planning in an extra 10% to even 20% on your different event categories can help you to prepare for when everyone RSVP’s back as a yes.
– Track your spending through the process. Setting a budget at the beginning is great, but you need to keep an eye on things the finish line. This will help you avoid last minute panicking.
– Get wedding insurance. Wedding insurance is great for piece of mind, for you and your family. This can help to cover items like, event postponement, liability, vendor cancellation, theft and tons of other things you hope never, ever happen! We recommend WedSafe and Wedsure. Also, if you are a home owner, check with your own insurance provider. Sometimes you can add a rider to your policy for a one day event.
– Have a “Safe” word. If you find the process is getting overwhelming and your getting hot under the collar, take a time out! Having a prep-planned safe word or gesture between you and your partner to keep you cool. You want to make it to the “I Do” in one piece. Be sure to build a good plan to rescue each other when times get tough.
Many wedding sites out there have great budgeting tools available. Best of all, they are free!!! Here are a few to check out.
We hope this information helps you in the planning process. Just remember, no two weddings are alike and no two budgets are either. Be flexible and open minded with your loved ones. Asking for assistance also means listening to their ideas and experiences as well. Please and Thank-You always are appreciated by those you love and love you.