If I had a Euro for every bride that ever said “we haven’t set a budget, but we won’t spend over X amount,” I’d be very rich!
When it comes to planning the biggest day of your life, setting a budget and sticking to it is a must. It’s not romantic and sometimes it won’t be fun, but believe me, starting off your married life with debts hanging over your head is not the way forward! Today we’re looking at how to make a realistic wedding budget and stick to it.
Where will be money be coming from?
It can be said that in years gone by the bride’s parents were the ones to cough up, but today all that has changed. Sure, there are plenty of parents out there who will want to contribute, but not everyone’s parents can afford the full expense of an entire wedding. Today it’s more realistic for couples to add their own hard earned cash to the equation. If yours or the groom’s parents want to contribute, chat to them and try to work out a figure that you can both afford. Some parents will want to pay for certain parts such as the reception, entertainment or wedding dress, so by deciding on the areas that each of you will be looking after, things will be a lot easier.
At this point you should also bare in mind how you are going to get this money. Will you be saving part of your salary each month or are you going to approach a lender such as the Credit Union? One things for sure, please, please try your best to stay away from high interest lenders such as the plastic in your purse! Even those with zero percent offers will run out and possibly before you have the balance cleared, leading to the balance rolling on and on and on…
If you were to make a hierarchy of your wedding day, what would be at the top? For some couples it’s the venue and food, while for others photography is most important. Decide what the most important factors in your wedding day are and set your budget to reflect this. You should also take into consideration any DIY projects you are planning at this stage; by saving money in one area can you spend slightly more in another, and vice-versa.
Keep on track
When you got engaged you probably received a wedding planner from one of your mates. Most wedding planners have a budget spreadsheet to keep a tally on your spending. However, if you prefer to keep this info on your computer, check out Mrs2Be’s downloadable wedding budget planner. But before you run out the door to spend, spend, spend on your day, complete your estimates. By knowing what you’d like to spend on each area of your wedding day you will be able to keep tabs on whether or not your spending is going as it should.
If you spend €50 on table decor and hadn’t taken that into consideration on your original budget, don’t just leave it out, make sure you account for it within your budget and try to recoup the costs somewhere else, otherwise your budget isn’t realistic!
Above all else, if times get tough and your budget starts to wilt, remember you are doing this to make your first step in to married life as breezy as possible and as long as you end up married on the day, it will be a success no matter what you spend.
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