Creating Your Wedding Budget When You Are Limited
Most brides I talk with say their wedding budget is the biggest stress in planning their wedding.
Everything costs so much and how do you even go about deciding where you should spend the money you have?
With this in mind, I have put together a guideline to help you in identifying your wedding budget and figuring out where to spend it.
Talk to your families to see how much everyone is contributing toward your wedding if any or if you will be paying for most everything yourselves.
Get your guest list put together on everyone you would like to invite however don’t go overboard. This may have to change later depending on the amount of your budget and your priorities.
Figure out what type of wedding you want to have.
Put together a priorities list of your top 3-5 must haves and the 3-5 things you least care about.
Once you have the amount you will be able to set forth for your wedding and the number of guest you would like to invite, start allocating your wedding budget into categories to see if it is realistic.
Do your research.
Take time to educate yourself and do your wedding due diligence.
Find out how much weddings cost in your area.
You will begin with getting estimates from venues and vendors to make sure your allocations are in range.
Start with a basic wedding budget.
Put together your estimated budget.
Make a list of wedding expenses and assign a budget amount for each.
Once you have some quotes, you can put everything into a spreadsheet with your total budgeted amount and percentage you are allocating per expense category.
Decide which categories you will include or take out based on your budget, proposals and your priorities.
Once you determine the actual costs you can start listing all items under each category so you don’t forget any details.
At this time you may need to reconsider your guest count if the venue you want is out of your price range.
You may have to do quite a bit of extra research or reallocation if your budget is limited.
Remember the more wedding guests the higher the cost.
If you need to cut back take a look at the biggest expenses and start there.
You may want to play around with the numbers and see if you can make it work.
Or you could look for alternative options if your dream wedding is more than your budget can handle.
If this is the case, you will have to spend more time being creative to make your wedding vision come true.
Figure out what resources and assistance is available to you.
Do you know anyone that could help?
What about a backyard wedding or could you DIY your own décor?
Are you willing to put in more hours at work or sell something of value in order to pay for your ideal wedding?
Check out wedding deals online.
Don’t forget to negotiate.
Hire a wedding planner; yes spend more on getting a professional’s help in managing your budget. After all, a wedding planner has insider information and will not only save you money but time researching other alternatives.
Be aware of other options.
Brunches and lunches for instance are less expensive than dinner.
Decide that the price tag doesn’t matter.
Don’t worry about what others will say.
Maybe something as simple as choosing another date might be the solution to obtaining the wedding of your dreams.
Find what works best for your situation.
For more ideas on how you can save money for an affordable wedding take a look at our blog “33 Affordable Ways to Keep Your Wedding Affordable”.
Remember about gratuities and taxes.
And don’t forget about those unknowns; you may want to allocate a little extra for just in case.
Use a wedding goal. Set not only a wedding budget but also a wedding goal, this will help keep you in budget by allowing an extra cushion for extras.
Just because you have $25k to spend towards your wedding doesn’t mean you have to.
When you are ready, start booking your venue and other wedding vendors according to what is most important to you and reallocate budgeted items if they wind up being over or under.
Keep track of everything you spend toward your wedding and any remaining amounts due so you know where you are at all times, before you go over budget and to keep you from going over budget.
A good way to do this is by opening a separate bank account with your wedding funds.
If you do have budget constraints, do your best not to get distracted by new and sparkly details that really don’t matter.
Things can add up really quickly.
Think about it first!
Would you spend hundreds of dollars on (fill in the blank) if you were throwing a party that wasn’t your wedding?
Be realistic and consider what you would pay for various things if it weren’t for your wedding. Is it really for a reasonable price?
Will you continue to use the item after your wedding?
Can you sell the item and make a portion of your spent money back?
You may have to make some compromises however, that does not mean you can’t have the wedding you always dreamed of.
It is hard not to get caught up in it all and want to splurge but spend wisely on your wedding, only paying more for the things that really do matter to you.
It is your wedding and hopefully the only or last one you will ever have. Spend the time to make it what you want.
Remember the wedding is a celebration of your commitment to each other amongst your closest family and friends.
Whether you have it in a backyard or in one of the most prestigious hotels, there are ways to make your wedding special, affordable and absolutely fabulous.
You are stuck with your budget unless you win the lottery, get a promotion or decide to sell that family heirloom you’ve been holding on to, so make the best of it.
You can still have a beautiful wedding even with a limtied budget; just get a little more creative to make it happen.
Hopefully these suggestions will help you to have a guideline and prevent you from getting too stressed out and overwhelmed in preparing your wedding budget.
If you want additional help, schedule your complimentary wedding planning consultation with me today!
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