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Simple Steps to Create a Wedding Budget

When you start writing your wedding budget, you might feel a little overwhelmed at first. There are so many things to spend money on that you may not even know where to begin writing budget items. You can, however, write and stick with a successful budget if you follow these easy steps.

Where to begin

Before you even start crunching numbers, write down the things that are essential for your wedding. Talk to your fiancé because he might have different ideas from you, and you'll want to figure out the best way to merge your styles before writing a budget.

Talk to your fiancé about what your perfect wedding would be like, and listen to him talk about his perfect wedding. If you're coming from opposite ends of the spectrum, figure out how to meet in the middle and agree on a theme or look you'll both love.

Next, how much can you spend?

This is a pretty important step, of course. The best place to start is usually with your parents. They may want to contribute a lump sum to your wedding plans, or they may have a few particular things in mind that they'll pay for. Any money your parents contribute plus any wedding money you have saved can be set aside for your wedding budget.

Don't use credit or loans to up the ante for your wedding budget. Even if you only have a little to work with, adding debt will only stress you and your husband-to-be out, especially at the start of your marriage.

You may want to open a bank account or a credit card specifically for your wedding because it will help you track each payment. Each month leading up to the big day, you can look over an account ledger to find out just how much you've spent. (If you decide to go the credit card route, find one with a 0% introductory interest rate, and pay it off every month. You don't want interest rolled into your wedding budget!)

Use all your resources

If you know people who would make excellent photographers, chauffeurs, invitation-makers, dress makers, or anything else you'll need on your wedding day, make a list.

Your friends and family members will most likely be elated to help out on your wedding day. Plus, using the talents of people you know will make your wedding day both more special and more affordable.

Make a guest list

Create a rough list of how many guests you'll invite. It's really easy for your parents and his parents to add extended family members and out-of-town friends to this list, so be careful here.

You really shouldn't invite people to your wedding if you don't want them there or know them well, so here are a few ideas to help you pare down the list
don't invite people you just work with; only friends
only include relatives up to first cousins
have an adults-only wedding

Paring down the guest list is difficult but necessary, and you'll need to include your fiancé and his family as well as your family, as they may want to add people you hadn't thought of.

Total up the big costs

Having an approximate number of guests will help you figure out some of your big costs such as catering, venues, and drinks, and you can include these in your budget plan now.

You can start getting more specific by calling vendors you like. See if they're available first of all, and then get estimated costs for the number of guests you'll have. It will be easy to see whether or not the vendors fit into your budget, so you can move on quickly and ask for more specific quotes from the most affordable vendors.

Add up smaller costs too

Start filling up a spreadsheet with the smaller costs of decorations and favours. Keep the sheet updated as you figure out exact costs for everything.

Over budget?

If the rough budget you've written out now is much too high, you'll have to consider your priorities. Maybe you need a smaller cake, or a DJ instead of a live band.

Decide how you and your fiancé want to splurge and how you can afford to save. You could make your own invitations so that you have extra money for a designer dress. It's really important that you prioritize and stay on budget, as going over budget will be very stressful.

If you simply don't have enough money saved to create the wedding day you want, you could consider moving your date back a few months giving you time to save that extra cash.

The little things

When it comes to your wedding budget, it won't be the costly items that throw your budget off but the small ones. It can be simple to save money on big ticket items, but the little things can really start adding to your budget. So watch yourself when it comes to little things, and keep all your receipts so you can update your wedding budget all the time.

About The Author


Nicola Ray is the editor of Cheap Wedding Success, a website dedicated to planning and creating the perfect cheap wedding.

Date Posted: 2010-01-15
Listed under these Business Listing Categories: Miscellaneous,

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