Setting priorities on your wedding budget
Let`s be honest - this is a part of wedding planning that most brides would rather skip and just dive into creating their wedding Pinterest board instead of dealing with excel and calculate how much guests can they afford to invite or if she can have peony centerpieces instead of seasonal flowers or hire a full size band instead of a DJ.
But, and we can`t point this out enough, you need to know your budget before making any further plans!
Wedding budget will affect your wedding venue options, menu choice, vendors selection… Without thinking of a budget first, it will be impossible to make any real wedding related choice. Setting the budget is definitely the most important part when you plan a wedding.
For the sake of this blog post, it doesn`t matter if you plan to spend 10k or 100k on your wedding...we will give you some general guidance that should help you decide how to be efficient when creating a wedding budget.
Here are five easy steps to follow when thinking about the wedding budget:
1. Know who is contributing any by how much
It is always awkward to handle money conversations, but if your parents (or other family members) want to contribute it is an information worth knowing from the very beginning. You and your fiance also need to have an honest talk about how much you can spend without going into debt. This will result in creating an estimated wedding budget.
We never encourage getting a loan to cover wedding expenses. Instead of going into debt, start saving as soon as you get engaged and open up a separate wedding account so it will be easier to keep track of all wedding expenses.
2. Make a preliminary guests list
After you estimate the wedding budget, it is time to estimate the guest count, too. In general, the number of your guests will have the biggest impact on the total amount. The money spent on venue rental and wedding menu usually makes about 50% of the total cost. This number will set some limits when choosing the wedding venue, but also impact items that are paid depending of the guest count. To name a few: wedding stationery, chairs rentals, wedding cake size, favors...
After completing step no. 2 you will have an estimated price per person.
3. Choose your priorities
We know...you and your fiance probably don`t have the same opinion on this one. Maybe he want`s an open bar and you have your heart set on specific table scape… As in marriage, the key is to compromise ;) Most of us can`t afford everything to be a priority, but have to set some limits. If that`s the case, each of you should try thinking of THE ONE thing you can not marry without (except the love of your life). Once you`ll have that decided, you will budget for those non-negotiables and see how much money there`s left for other wedding elements. Balance between must-haves & nice-to-have is the key.
4. Be very detailed
When creating a wedding budget, do your research and be very detailed. There are some obvious costs like the dress, food & drinks, rings, photographers but also hidden costs like postage, vendors tips, venue set up charges… If you are not hiring a wedding planner, you need to be very specific in your calculations. We recommend doing so by using excel chart or GoogleSheets so you can easily keep track.
5. Choose the right venue
Wedding venues sell out fast so this should be your number one priority when you start booking wedding related vendors. If you choose the venue that matches your wedding theme, you will be able to save on decorations. It costs a lot of money to transform a standard conference hall into a lavishing scenery. In those cases, it might be more cost effective to choose a castle-type venue even if it means higher spending on rental fee or food and drinks, but it might get you significant savings in decoration department. Once again, spreadsheets will come super handy to compare which approach makes more sense money-wise.
You don`t need to hire a hype band everyone seems to be getting for their wedding reception or buy the latest Vera Wang wedding dress...your wedding will still be beautiful and meaningful even if you`ll need to compromise on some items. Cheers to the best day & marrying the love of your life!
Do you plan a destination wedding and consider to do it in beautiful Croatia? Drop us an email at [email protected] and we`ll be happy to discuss your plans.