In all honesty, most brides have every detail of their wedding day planned out on Pintrest, down to the font type on the monogramed napkins. The thing many brides don't want to think about is the cost of all of the details that make up their dream wedding day. That's where the wedding budget comes in. Something no one wants to talk about but something every couple needs to discuss. Don't worry! We know creating a budget can be a difficult and daunting task. Because of this, we have come up with a few suggestions on what to consider when creating the perfect budget!
Photo: Cezanne Photography
Where the money comes from
First things first, where is the money coming from? Traditionally, the parents of the bride are in charge of all thing wedding day while the groom's parents are in charge of the cost of the rehearsal dinner. However, this is not always the case. Finding out exactly how much money your loved ones have set aside to contribute to your big day is a great place to start. Discussing this topic privately with each set of parents is the best way to approach the topic. Asking parents to cover a certain aspect of the wedding, such as the catering or ceremony, is another way to ask for their financial support.
Photo: Scenic Root Photography
Once you have added these funds together, consider how much money you and your future spouse are willing to spend on your wedding day. Once engaged, Many couples begin to put a portion of each pay check, such as 10%, aside in order to save for the big day!
After adding all funds together you should have a pretty good idea of what your budget is for your wedding day. It's never a bad idea to set aside some money from your wedding budget just incase there are any last minute hidden expenses.
What does the money go to?
Now that you have created an amount that you are comfortable with spending on your wedding day, you need to know exactly how to budget that money. When considering how to allocate your money, think of what is important to you. If you love to dance and want an amazing DJ then consider adding more funds to this area and maybe not so much to flowers. Although on the lower end of the national average, an average wedding in Georgia costs approximately $21,000. What does all that money go to you might ask? We've researched and come up with some statistics to help with your own budget.
Photo: Brandi Sisson Photography
Typical Budget Breakdown:
The Reception site is typically the bulk of your wedding day expenses ranging from 48% to 50% of your entire budget. The Videography and Photography is probably the second highest when it comes to budget allowance. It ranges from 10% to 12%. Entertainment/Music, Flowers, and Attire all range from about 8% to 10% of your budget. The remaining categories, Wedding Rings, Ceremony, Gifts, Parking/Transportation, and stationary take up about 2% to 3% of the budget. Just because this is the typical allocation for a wedding budget doesn't mean you must follow it! Adjust it to your own needs by splurging in some areas while you cut costs in others.
Photo: Macy O'Connell Photography
We also recommend keeping a "miscellaneous" fund that allows for any last minute touches you might need or a "just in case" fund. Also, if your honeymoon budget and wedding budget are two in the same make sure to save some money for your honeymoon!
Tracking the Money
Having a budget is great but it doesn't help unless you stick to it! One way we recommend on how to keep up with your wedding budget is to create a spreadsheet! The Spreadsheet should have three different columns: Estimated, Adjusted, and Actual. This will allow you to research different costs in your area so that you can come up with an estimated amount for certain items. Once you decided on a few options and how much you want to spend add it to the adjusted column. Finally, once you have a final total on what you actually spent on an item add it to the actual column so that you know if you need to add funds or cut funds in another area. Be sure to ask if taxes are included when conducting your research! If not, be sure to calculate the taxes yourself so you don't get off budget.
Photo: Shelby Norris Photography
Adding a tip column to your spreadsheet is a great idea! Some aspects of your wedding might expect a tip and budgeting for this is important. When conducting your research be sure to ask if the tip is included in the price or if that will be an additional cost.
Photo: Finding Fox Creative
Wedding Budget Tips
Charge responsibly! Never charge something to your credit card for your wedding that you will not be able to pay off within one month. No dream wedding is worth going into debt over!
Make sure your venue includes all of the basics: tables, chairs, and linens. Having to rent these items for your big day can get expensive fast!
Shrink your guest list. Does Betty Sue that you went to elementary school with and haven't seen since really need an invite?
Friday or Sunday Wedding: This is a great way to save on costs because typically these days cost less than a Saturday wedding.
Get Crafty: DIY is a great way to save money on invitations, wedding decorations, or even flowers. Pintrest will be your best friend.
Photo: Laura Hamon Photography
Whatever your wedding budget needs may be we are here to help! Asking your coordinator on what brides have done in the past to save money is another great way to use your resources. In the end, your marring the love of your life so don't stress too much over having a huge wedding budget. As always, Happy Planning!!