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How to Build Your Wedding Budget

Congrats! You are planning your big day! I'm sure you are excited & also a bit overwhelmed. This blog post will assist you on how to begin to build your wedding budget, & hopefully decrease some of that stress.

As exciting as planning a wedding can be, there is often a lot of money involved so it's important to deal with that part head on. In fact, in 2022 the average cost of a wedding was $30K! Putting together a budget & understanding how much money you have will alleviate some anxiety & allow you to pay for your wedding up front instead of on a credit card (you don't want to know what interest on $30K looks like!).

Step 1: Create your personal monthly budget as a couple

Yes, I know this seems boring & unrelated to wedding planning. But I promise when done correctly, it can provide confidence, structure & a feeling of control that might otherwise be missing. I recommend creating your personal budget before your wedding budget so you get a good & realistic idea of how much you have leftover, after all your bills are paid. That way you can understand how much you realistically can contribute to your wedding fund each month.

Step 2: Have an honest conversation with your partner

This step is crucial before you even begin creating your wedding budget. Find out what's important to your partner, & what you value in a wedding day. Be honest with each other & try to not let other people's opinions sway your decisions for your big day. If during your discussion you find that neither of you care about a fancy wedding cake, then it's OKAY TO NOT HAVE ONE, even if Aunt Sally disagrees. This is your day & the two of you should be the only ones making decisions about what your wedding will look like. During this discussion you should also make a rough list of the loved ones you would like to invite. The number of guests you have has the largest influence on your budget.

Step 3: Create your wedding budget

I recommend using a simple spreadsheet. Include all the things that you & your partner discussed were important to you, & feel empowered to leave off all the things you realized weren't important. Make sure your overall budget is realistic based on what you discovered after putting together your regular monthly budget. Consider creating a budget that looks like this:

  • Column A - vendor/item

  • Column B - budgeted amount

  • Column C - actual cost

  • Column D - difference between column B & C

  • Column E - notes

Make sure you total your amounts at the bottom & modify as needed. Your budget will absolutely change over time, which is very normal, but getting at least a rough draft of your wedding budget is essential to ensuring you don't overspend.

Step 4: Start researching/planning

Now is the time to begin looking into caterers, attire, venues, etc. Do as much research as you need to before deciding on items that are not only in budget, but also make you & your partner happy. And remember your list of what's really important to you both. If attire isn't something that's really important to you, steer clear of fancy dress shops or tuxedo rentals. As with everything, if you spend money in one place you aren't spending money in another. So spend your money on the things that are really important. This phase is also where you should start to think about a wedding date. Once you have your personal budget completed, & a decent understand of your wedding budget, figure out how long it will take you to save up that amount, and plan your date accordingly.

There is so much more to it, but hopefully this blog helped you get started. Continue reading my blogs other wedding budget tips!

How to create a wedding budget


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