You may have dreamed about your wedding day since you were little. I know I did. 🙂
You probably pictured the perfect wedding gown, venue, five-tiered wedding cake, and the big and exciting reception you’d throw, filled with delicious food, a great band, and all of your family and friends.
Now, thanks to the wonderful world of Pinterest, that dream may have gotten even bigger as you’ve browsed picture to picture, seeing all the immaculate and beautiful things you could do at your wedding.
Often times, when you’re planning a wedding, you can get a bit carried away. The idea of cost has a tendency to fall to the wayside.
Unfortunately, all those elaborate decorations and that Italian lace wedding gown with the Swarovski crystals can cost a small fortune, which brings forth the discussion of how exactly you’re going to pay for all of this.
Luckily, you don’t have to go into debt to pay for your wedding. Here are 7 ways to plan and finance your wedding without debt entering the picture.
1. Start Saving Ahead of Time
Save, save and save some more. This may seem like the most obvious answer, but paying for your wedding yourself, in full, is one of the best ways to ensure you don’t pile on debt.
During the months preceding your wedding, put as much money aside as possible. You may need to cut out, or cut down on, some of your expenses in the discretionary category of your budget.
You might consider opening a separate wedding account as well so you aren’t tempted to spend any money before your wedding expenses hit.
By doing this you’ll be able to pay off some of your wedding costs as you go along. Furthermore, many venues and vendors require you to put down half of your deposit upon placing your order, so if you already have the money to put down, you’ll be halfway done.
2. Set a Budget and Stick to It
Along with saving money yourself, it’s important to decide on your budget before you begin planning.
Once you start planning and dreaming up your perfect wedding, it can be difficult to rein yourself back in, even if you find yourself over budget.
Take time to sit down and figure out how much money you have to spend total, including the money you’ve saved and any given to you by friends or family. Then figure out how much you’re willing to spend on each item on your list, from venue to clothing to cake.
Once you have your budget, stick to it! No matter what else you do, don’t allow yourself to go over budget. Track your spending as you go along so you can reflect back throughout, adjust things if needed, and to ensure you’re staying within your total amount.
3. Talk to Family
Years ago, the bride’s family paid for the wedding. However, these days, the cost of a wedding can be a lot for just one household’s income. That being said, if you and your spouse are close to family, it might not hurt to see if multiple people will chip in.
See if the groom’s parents will help with the finances by having them take charge of certain events. Another option is to ask other family members to help out in lieu of a wedding gift.Worried about how to pay for your #wedding and don't want to get into #debt? Here are 7 ideas Click To Tweet
While the world of Pinterest can give couples lofty expectations when it comes to their nuptials, it can also be a great asset.
Consider going the do-it-yourself route on certain aspects of your wedding. Instead of spending hundreds to thousands of dollars on flowers and flower arrangements, browse Pinterest boards for inspiration and shop local flower shops for inexpensive options. You can then grab your bridesmaids and other members of your wedding party to arrange the centerpieces and bouquets yourself.
You could also do-it-yourself by hosting your wedding in a friend’s backyard, where again, you could browse for inspiration and then decorate yourself. The cost of cutting out the wedding venue alone would be great. There are tons of details, like invitations, that you can opt to do yourself.
By using your own creative skills here and there, you can save big on various parts of your wedding.
Although every small detail may seem important now, it’s not worth going into debt for. If there are certain things, like that Italian lace dress or a grand venue, that are non-negotiable to you, then don’t feel bad about splurging on those items.
However, that means you’ll have to cut back on other things.
Look at your budget and decide what matters most to you. You can go the extravagant route on some things if you’re flexible in other areas.
6. Shop Around
Most people wouldn’t buy the first house they look at and the same should go for your wedding as well. Don’t go with the first venue you look at or the first bakery you walk in to.
Both are things that could cost you big bucks and chances are, there’s someplace that’s equally as good or even better that could give you a nice deal.
Ask around and do your homework before making any big decisions so you know you’re receiving the best price possible.
7. Throw an Off-Season Wedding
While April through September seems to be the designated wedding season, there’s no rule that says you have to get married during those months.
Consider having a fall or winter wedding; venues and bakeries won’t be as booked, and you’ll most likely receive a much better rate.
The same can be said on the day you choose to get married as well. Although Saturday is the prime time, since most people have the day off, it’s also the day most people have their wedding, so you probably won’t receive a lower price. You might find yourself saving more money by choosing a Friday or Saturday.
“Spare no expense” is a phrase few people can follow, especially when it comes to their wedding day. You can still have your dream wedding without starting your newly married life in debt. By being smart and thinking outside the box, you can finance the best day of your life all while staying within a budget.
How did you finance your wedding? What are some of your tips for keeping costs down?