You want your special day to be as unique and memorable as possible. But without a plan in mind, it’s easy to lose track of your set budget and get carried away with unnecessary expenses.
Prepare for your big day with a wedding budget plan that will let you live happily ever after, just without the debt. Here’s everything that you need to know.
Bigger Doesn't Mean Better
It’s natural to think of your wedding as the biggest and most important event in your life. But before you book a venue for thousands of people you barely even know, stop for a moment and think… Is that really what you want your wedding to be?
Deciding on a venue can be extremely difficult. What if you could enjoy a luxurious ceremony and reception without having to go over your budget?
Glenmore Country Estate is often listed as the number one wedding venue in NSW and Australia. Located deep inside the heart of the Hunter Valley, the venue combines country charm with a luxurious edge. Treat yourself and your guests to a one-of-a-kind wedding experience that will be remembered for years to come.
Step 1: Set Up a Budget
If you ask a thousand friends about wedding budgets and wedding expenses, you’ll hear a thousand different things. That’s because wedding budgets depend on the inclusions that couples want to introduce.
Here are the three main sources of money that will determine your wedding budget:
- Savings. How well prepared are you for your special day? Have you been saving for the past few years? You may have something extra in your bank account, but you should never spend all your emergency funds in one go. Subtract your emergency fund (usually three months of living expenses) from the total, and calculate your savings accordingly.
- Monthly income. It’s a good idea to set aside a certain percentage of your monthly earnings to be used to organise your perfect wedding ceremony. But always manage your bills first!
- Contributions. A solution to the wedding contribution debate, is certainly the use of a wishing well. Whether it be from a prior engagement party, or from the wedding itself. This way, it can be built around your specific wedding requests. Receiving any type of wedding contribution from family or friends is a truly special experience, and a time for appreciating your loved ones.
Step 2: Make a List
Put a hard number on your budget and stick to it. We’re talking numbers here so make sure you know exactly how much you can and are willing to spend.
If either sets of parents are willing to help, make an effort to figure out exactly how much they can contribute. Setting up a budget without hard numbers is actually much harder than you’d think.
First, research costs in your area using websites like Weddingwire. Use that as a guide to estimate the actual cost.
Next, make a list of every single category that’s going to be affected and subtract the costs from your total budget. Think attire, accessories, reception, food, photo, rings, transportation, etc. How much you’ll end up spending is completely up to you.
Once you have your list, rank items in each category based on their importance. Do you care more about the design of the invitations and menus, or would you rather spend more on fine dining options? Do you care more about photography or videography? These are all things that you’ll have to consider.
Step 3: Be Prepared
No one likes surprises, especially when they have to do with your carefully calculated wedding budget. Well, guess what? Small costs can build up pretty quickly, which is why you should always keep track of everything.
Here are just some costs that you may not have considered:
- Transportation costs. If you’re hiring a photographer or band from out of town, be wary of rental van or plane tickets that may drive costs up significantly. Never sign a contract before double-checking everything.
- Digital access. Since photographers technically own your photos, they may charge extra to grant digital access to all your photos and videos.
- Custom drinks. Adding more alcohol to the menu is a sure way to go over your budget without even realising.
- Setup and setdown fees. Cleanup may or may not be included in the total price paid to the venue. This is why all-inclusive options will always have an extra edge.
Step 4: Don’t Overcharge
Why bother with cash when you can just charge your credit card now, enjoy a majestic wedding, and worry about the rest later? Sounds tempting for sure.
Unless you qualify for a card with a zero percent purchase APR, you shouldn’t ever charge anything that you can’t pay off in the near future. If you can’t pay cash, consider cutting down on your budget.
Besides your wedding, you should also be thinking about your honeymoon and future plans. The wedding itself is important, but you certainly don’t want to be thinking just about your wedding debt a few months down the line.
Step 5: Save
Saving money for your wedding can be an overwhelming, and often difficult task if you don’t know where to start. To get the ball rolling, you need to discover the perfect way to create a savings plan that motivates you.
So, here are some things you should consider to make your saving journey just that little bit easier:
- The guest list. If you don’t know who they are, they probably shouldn’t be on your list in the first place. Do away with your B-list.
- Off-peak ceremony. Ever considered having a winter wedding? An off-peak wedding will help cut down on the cost significantly.
- Thinking ahead. Give yourself more time to save and think about your wedding by prolonging your engagement if you can.
- All-inclusive, one-venue options. Save on transportation costs by choosing a place that can host the ceremony and reception in the same place.
- Create and write the invitations yourself. Calligraphy isn’t cheap. Take the time to write and personalise the invitations yourself — a lovely gesture in itself.
For an unforgettable wedding ceremony and reception in the Hunter Valley, consider Glenmore Country Estate. Our professional and dedicated planning team have a series of packages that will set you up for a magical day – and keep your budget in mind. Get in touch and start planning your dream wedding today!