Even though you and your fiance can’t wait to jump into the fun parts of the wedding planning like picking the dress or trying the cake, there are some things you should do first. Figuring out wedding costs is not an easy task. The sooner the better. You will have more time to determine how much money you should and can spend on each and every aspect of your wedding.
It might seem like hard work now, but trust us, creating a wedding budget will ensure you live happily ever after and without debt you can’t pay off. Here are some steps you can follow to create an ultimate wedding budget without the stress.
Count How Much Money You Have
While some couples decide to throw a wedding on their own, others count on help from their parents. You can make a budget from all possible sources of money. For instance:
- You and your fiance’s savings
Decide how much of your and your fiance’s savings you can put aside for the wedding. Don’t spend everything, but rather see how much you will need for everyday life and how much it is possible to use for your wedding day.
- Money coming from parents
While some couples decide it is better to pay for everything by themselves, others will have help from their parents. Moreover, in some countries, a tradition requires that parents pay a part of the wedding costs.
- The money you can set aside from your current income
This should be the amount of money you can set aside from your current income. After all the things you need to pay each month, try to set aside at least 10% and make it into savings for your future wedding.
Create a Spreadsheet
The best way to follow your expenses is to create a spreadsheet. You can divide expenses into three different categories – actual, estimated, and modified. So when you are finding vendors you can put those costs to modified, but the final amount will go to actual.
You should start with vendors because most of the time it is the biggest cost you will have. You can also add a cost for tips if it is what you give in your country.
We don’t want to scare you but you always have to think about those surprise costs. If you are renting a photographer or a band, then you should pay for their plane tickets or a rental van.
Before hiring a wedding planner you should check the contract and see what is included and what isn’t. Many vendors will require you to hire their in-house planners, so it might be counted as an extra cost.
Average Wedding Costs
According to some research done back in 2019, the average cost of a wedding in the USA was around 40,000$ dollars. This includes an engagement ring as well. However, you shouldn’t take this for granted. Your wedding costs can be much less or more than this average number.
Wedding Budget Breakdown
Regardless of how much you saved for your wedding or even how big your wedding is, you can break down the budget and see how much you can spend on each item.
When breaking down the budget you can set the priorities. For instance, you can decide on which to spend more – flower arrangements or stationery. That is how you can reduce one cost and have more for the preferred one.
- Vendor, Reception: 48 to 50%
- Attire: 8% to 10%
- Flower Arrangements: 8% to 10%
- Photographer: 10% to 12%
- Wedding Rings: 2% to 3%
- Transportation: 2%
- Surprise costs: 5%
Are You Going to a Honeymoon?
If you are planning a honeymoon after the wedding, you should consider this as an extra cost. You can include this in your wedding budget or as an independent cost. The couples usually spend around 5,000$ on their romantic getaway.
It is better to plan this ahead so you can go on your honeymoon right after the wedding. It is up to you and your partner how much you will spend, but it is practical to have this included in your wedding budget.