A Beautiful Wedding On A Budget Is Possible
Remember: Your wedding is about the two of you and your . And that will last much longer than one day of celebration. Through all of the wedding planning hoopla, remember not to lose sight of what truly matters. Spending a ton of money on your wedding day wont prove your love for one another, but it can leave you with an empty bank account. Its completely possible to throw a budget-friendly wedding thats beautiful, stylish and affordable!
You can have the gorgeous, debt-free wedding of your dreams, but only if you have a plan! Create your wedding budget today. Its fast and easy with our free budgeting app, EveryDollar!
About the author
Rachel Cruze is a two-time #1 national bestselling author, financial expert and host of The Rachel Cruze Show. She has appeared on Good Morning America, Today and Live With Kelly & Ryan, among others. Since 2010, Rachel has served at Ramsey Solutions, where she teaches people how to avoid debt, save money, budget and win with money at any stage in life.Learn More.
Prioritise Your Wedding Budget
Instead of seeing wedding planning as a hugely expensive process where everything blows the budget, its sensible to make a list of priorities things youre willing to splurge on, and others youre more prepared to save money on. You and your partner could begin by each pick your top 2-3 priorities for the wedding day.
Dont be afraid to completely omit those elements which arent important to you, no matter what they are, or how necessary other people might tell you they are to have.
For us, the wedding dress was a splurge the flowers a save ensure you and your fiance are on the same page. Having this short list of priorities is just a good idea so that you can focus a little more money, or time, or energy, on the things that are most important to the two of you.
It doesnt mean you cant have beautiful everything, but it can allow you to budget accordingly, and allocate funds to the compromisable once the non-negotiables are taken care of. Weddings dont actually need all the bells and whistles.
Whatever your financial position, I have a really good excel spreadsheet to use for your wedding budget within the little white planning pack, as well as budgetting pages in the little white book. The bundle includes both of those use budgethelp at checkout because every dollar counts right now.
If your big day dreams and your wedding budget dont add up, take some time to re-evaluate the Get Real phase.
Set Your Spending Limit
When budgeting for a wedding, it helps to first understand the total dollar amount you want to spend or can afford to spend.
If youre not sure how much you can earmark to spend on a wedding, consider:
- How much you and your future spouse currently have in savings
- How much you can each afford to save monthly toward a wedding
- How long you have to prepare until the wedding day
For example, say youre aiming to spend $19,000. Your wedding is 10 months away, and you currently have $3,000 saved in a wedding fund. Youd need to save $1,600 per month to reach your goal. But what if the take-home pay for both of you is $3,200 per month? Saving half your take-home probably isn’t feasible. The next part of planning a wedding budget is looking at your regular monthly budget to see whats doable.
Say, for instance, that you go over your spending and decide that at most you can save $400 per month. That amount saved over 10 months, combined with the $3,000 you already have, would give you $7,000 in total savings for the wedding. At this point, you have a few choices. You could:
- Downsize the scale of the wedding to stay within your $7,000 savings limit
- Look for ways to increase your income so youre able to save more money each month
- Ask family and friends for help in paying for the wedding
- Take out a personal loan or use credit cards to finance wedding expenses
These solutions have their pros and cons, which youd have to weigh before choosing the right one.
Recommended Reading: How Long To Plan Wedding
Use A Fake Wedding Cake
Wedding cakes can get extremely expensive compared to ordinary cakes.
So, if you have a crafty friend or a family member with great icing skills, ask them to decorate a tiered cake-shaped block of Styrofoam, and serve your guests a store-bought cake instead.
If you have your heart set on the cake-cutting tradition, you could purchase a smaller cake and use it as the fake cakes topper.
What Is A Reasonable Budget For A Wedding
The average wedding cost in 2020 was $19,000. Having a wedding isnt as simple as saying I do and its a lot more expensive. The average cost of a wedding in 2020 was $19,000 , according to The Knots 2020 Real Weddings Study.
Keeping this in consideration, What does the grooms family pay for in a traditional wedding?
What Does the Grooms Family Pay For, Traditionally? The grooms family is responsible for corsages and boutonnieres for immediate members of both families, the lodging of the grooms attendants , and sometimes the costs of the rehearsal dinner.
Secondly How do you plan a wedding on a $1000 budget? Steps to Plan a Wedding on a $1,000 Budget
How do you pay for a wedding with no money?
How to pay for a wedding with no money:
Read Also: Wedding Venue Comparison Excel
Average 2019 Wedding Costs
Information from The Knot indicates how much vendors charged on average in 2019 for their services. These figures will give you an idea of what couples can plan to spend in various budget categories:
- Invitations: $590
- Grooms attire and accessories
- Brides and grooms wedding bands
Youll also need to add the cost of the marriage license, which ranges depending on location but generally costs less than $100.
Now think about extras. Do you want to hire an instructor to choreograph your first dance? Do you want sparklers at your send-off? Are you getting special gifts for your bridal party? Youll need to budget for those.
Theres also all the incidental costs. Do you need to purchase a liquor license to serve alcohol at a nontraditional venue? Did you factor in the cost of stamps for your wedding invitations? Make sure you dont forget tipping and taxes.
Go To A Thrift Store For Your Dress Or Suit
Wedding dresses and suits or tuxes are often a sizable line item on wedding budgets. But they dont have to be. You can find beautiful, vintage wedding dresses and tuxes or suits in thrift stores. Make a day of it and see what you can find. Your wedding finery may need a little mending or tailoring, but even with that cost added on it will be much less expensive than a new dress.
You can also discover affordable wedding dresses online. Visit eBay and Craigslist, or explore Etsy for affordable originals. Nearly Newlywed offers gently worn wedding dresses for resale, and Rent the Runway lets you rent a stunning wedding dress for four days. Even high-end and popular stores have affordable dresses in the mix. Check out Nordstrom, Anthropologies BHLDN line, and Davids Bridal.
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Ask For Help With Food Instead Of Gifts
This is an excellent option for backyard weddings or local halls. Reach out to your foodie friends, or your aunt who makes ornate cakes for every occasion. Many people love to help in this way, and you wont know unless you ask. The key is not to expect positive responsessome people prefer to kick back completely when they attend a wedding.
Do Some Comparison Shopping
Chances are high your soon-to-be-spouse wasnt the very first person you dated, ever. Fielding through options is how you arrive at the right fit is part of job searching and dating, as well as wedding planning. Sarah, who works as an event planner, suggests using a budget tracker or Google spreadsheet to organize quotes, spending, and your budget. And when it comes to vendor prices, the more information you have, the better. This is how you can select the highest quality and most cost-effective suppliers as you determine how to budget for your wedding.
Also Check: Wedding Planning Spreadsheet Google Sheets
Shave 125% Off Your Total Budget
Once you’ve decided how much you can afford to spend on your wedding, no matter how great or small that figure is, shave a hefty contingency off it.
- in general, we recommend setting aside 12.5% as contingency, but if you know you tend to overspend, 15% might be more savvy, or if you’re really good at sticking to budgets, 10% might do the trick.
- Here’s an example to illustrate let’s say you have 30,000 to spend on your wedding. Taking 12.5% or 3,750 as your contingency fund, you now have 26,400 as your working budget. The contingency fund is there as a back-up for any unexpected costs, but shouldn’t be allocated to any expenses in the early stages of planning.
Starting Your Wedding Budget
Unfortunately, your wedding budget is one of the most challenging aspects of planning your wedding, but Im here to make that easier with the complete guide to starting your wedding budget, and template to help you begin.
Before you get into all the beautiful inspo that is wedding planning, you have to tackle a couple of not so beautiful aspects of your big day. While it can be tempting to think that you can plan and organise your wedding, and spend as you go without considering what it is all going to cost in the end, by doing so you risk being unable to afford some of the elements which may be really important to you, later down the line.
Recommended Reading: Wedding Bands To Pair With Solitaire
Borrow Stereo Equipment Or Use Yours From Home
If youre having a small event anyway, hiring a DJ might be overkill. Wedding Wire reports that the average DJ cost is $1,000, so you may be able to forgo that cost by setting up your own speakers attached to a computer for a small dance. For music, you are legally allowed to use a music streaming service like Spotify . For emcee services, ask your most outgoing friend to help.
Strategy: Do the DJing yourself Savings: $1,000
Say Yes To The Bargain Dress
Choosing your dream dress is a big part of wedding planning, but there are so many more options beyond visiting your local bridal shop if youre on a budget. While high street retailers including Whistles, French Connection and ASOS all have their own wedding dress lines, you could also look to websites like Still White, a pre-owned wedding dress marketplace, where you can find designer wedding dresses at a fraction of their original retail price.
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The Importance Of Starting Your Wedding Budget Asap
The wedding industry is a multi-billion dollar one worldwide: around £10 Billion annually in the UK, and who knows how much in New Zealand, but its no small sum! One of the first things youve probably heard about or read is the average wedding budget, whatever that is in your country.
In New Zealand its said to be around $35,000, but I have recently written an article on how the average cost of a wedding is actually very misleading, so dont get too caught up in what other people are spending.
To get you off to a good start, you may wish to instead have a look at a couple of real budgets I have shared my wedding budget, and a friend of mine shared her wedding budget so that you can see exactly what it all cost, compare, and get an idea for where yours could fit. Theres also some more sample budgets at the bottom of this post.
Working on the wedding budget within the little white book
Starting your wedding budget is a pretty scary thought for many couples, the wedding is the first time you both will have had to plan a huge event, let alone save the money for, and pay for it.
Before you begin, please keep in mind that your wedding day does not have to be expensive to be perfect, and it does not have to be perfect to be wonderful.
If your expectations and budget dont match, theres plenty you can do to bring them closer together.
Wedding Alcohol Cost And Bar Budget
Almost everyone who plans a wedding has to decide how much of their budget to allocate toward the bar and how many beverages to stock their wedding bar with.
A wedding planner should be equipped to help with this information.
Before you read this article, watch this video for the formula to calculate cost for a 100 person wedding. You can use the same formula for any number of guests.
Now that youve watched the video, read details below.
To start, a good rule of thumb is to assume the average guest will consume two drinks during the first hour and then one drink for each hour thereafter.
The cost of an average open bar at a wedding can account for 10 20% of the wedding budget. And dont forget that tipping the bar tenders at the end of the night can run as much as 20% of the final bar tab.
Lets look at an example to help lets say you have 150 people at your wedding. It is always better to overestimate than to come up short so lets say the average person consumes 6 drinks. That means 900 drinks will be consumed at an average cost of $5 each.
Your open bar budget should be $4500 in this example.
How Many Alcoholic Beverages are Needed
Use this as a rule of thumb these are averages for the number of bottles needed per hour per guest:
Keep in mind the above averages are PER HOUR, so multiply those by each hour your open bar will be available.
The average wedding keeps the bar open for up to 5 hours.
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