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Wedding Budget Checklist

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Congratulations!!!!!! You’re ENGAGED and GETTING MARRIED!!! What a crazy ride you’re about to embark on! With all the thoughts flying through your head, you’re realize how much there really is that you have to do!

Your first wedding planning to-do? Setting your (realistic) wedding budget. This will also help you with your overall planning checklist. From the dress to the reception, here’s how to plan your wedding budget and stick to it.

Figuring out your wedding budget can be stressful, but don’t worry — we’re here to help! You have options. Whether you’re dreams are of a lavish hotel affair or an intimate outdoor gathering, this will hopefully help you figure out what you have to spend to make it happen.
 
1. Get organized. Create a budget spreadsheet with a set dollar limit for each part of your budget (attire, reception, flowers, etc.). See the budget checklist I used for my own wedding – feel free to use it for yours too! It’s fully changeable!
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AmWJdlXCteWsdGpyRmVCb0p2R094alFLS2tHNW9aaFE 

Scroll down to the bottom to see and save the picture of the spreadsheet.

2. Figure out Who’s Paying & How Much. Depending on your family situation, this conversation can be a little awkward unless you’ve always known who’s footing the bill. Traditionally the bride’s family is the one to pay for the extravaganza, but anymore, the groom’s parents pitch in some too. This is completely up to you on how to go about it, but this is an important piece of the puzzle to truly know how much you’re working with. Some families choose to have each set of parents give a lump sum or finance a particular aspect of the wedding (such as the ceremony, honeymoon, or catering) instead of just committing to a dollar amount. From there, decide how much you two can contribute between now and the wedding. (37 % of the couples we polled say they’re planning to contribute financially to their wedding.)

3. NEED vs. WANT. Figuring out what you actually NEED for your special day is crucial. It’s all the little details that add up really fast. Think of it as buying a new car – you should figure out how much you need to spend to get what you want and set your expectations accordingly.  The average cost for a 150-person wedding is about $25,000 (higher in urban areas). Here is a basic breakdown of what you can expect to pay:

  • Reception: 48%-50%
  • Ceremony: 2%-3%
  • Attire: 8%-10%
  • Flowers: 8%-10%
  • Entertainment/Music: 8%-10%
  • Photography/Videography: 10%-12%
  • Stationery: 2%-3%
  • Wedding Rings: 2%-3%
  • Parking/Transportation: 2%-3%
  • Gifts: 2%-3%
  • Miscellaneous: 8%
  • To avoid stress, allot about 5% of your budget for a “just-in-case” fund.
  • If you’re paying for your honeymoon yourselves, remember to budget for that as well.
4. Saving. As soon as you know you’re going to tie the knot with your honey, start putting aside as much of your income as you can for the wedding. Saving 20% of your monthly income is a good (yet painful) goal. The longer your engagement, the more you’ll be able to sock away. How can you Save? Limit your spending on small stuff – Here are some ideas:
  • Rent a movie instead of going out.
  • Buy/make your own cup of joe instead of going to Starbucks.
  • Make dinner with your love instead of going out to eat.
  • Head to the thrift store to get some goods instead of large department stores.

These changes will hardly affect your quality of life, but after a year, the extra cash will add up and can cover some wedding essentials.

All in all, there are several ways to cut, or go all out in your spending on your wedding. The bottom line: This is YOUR day. And hopefully your only wedding. Make it what you want it to be and DON’T do things just because you care what everyone else thinks! Hope this helps! Happy Planning!! 

Wedding Budget Checklist

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About simplymoxie

Wedding accessories to help make your BIG day extra special!! Moxie, noun: The ability to face difficulty with spirit and courage; energy, pep; courage, determination

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