Wedding season is here: How to save for the big day
Weddings are expensive. According to The Knot, the average cost for a wedding (excluding the honeymoon) in the United States in 2017 was $33,391. Spending that amount of money on a one-day event may be reasonable for some, but most couples hope to tie the knot without depleting their savings or going into debt.
But in reality, do you need to spend over $30,000 to have a beautiful wedding? I don’t think so. What I do know is that regardless of the amount of money you plan to spend, having a plan on how to finance the big day is extremely important.
Here are five tips on saving for the big day:
1. Create a budget. This is probably the most important thing you can do. Sit down with your partner and have a discussion about how much you can realistically afford to spend on the wedding without breaking the bank. Once that’s done, you’ll have a better understanding on how to finance the wedding.
2. Open a wedding savings account. Once you have a general idea of how much the big day will cost, open a savings account. To get a good idea about how much you need to save, take the sum of your desired budget and divide it by the number of months you have to save up. So if you need to save $15,000 in 12 months, you’ll have to save $1250 per month. If the amount doesn’t seem realistic, consider adjusting the budget or pushing back the wedding day by a couple of months.
3. Get started. Once you have an idea of how much you need to save, start saving immediately. An easy way to do this is by allocating a portion of your direct deposit into the wedding savings account. If you get a bonus or raise at work, consider depositing the extra cash into the account as well. This extra money can be used to account for any items not budgeted for in the beginning.
4. Cut back on your spending. Because you’ll be saving for the wedding, you may need to make some sacrifices and cut back on your spending. So if you like to dine out or go to the movies on a regular basis, you may want to consider eating at home more often and renting movies, which can save you a good amount of money in the long run. I admit this can be challenging, but the big day should be worth the sacrifice.
5. Be flexible. Did you know the day of the week you choose for your wedding can greatly affect the cost? Saturdays take the cake for the most popular day to get married; however, if you’re flexible, consider getting married on a Friday or Sunday. You will likely spend less on the venue and caterer, saving you money that can be allocated toward other expenses.
At the end of the day, you will likely not remember the floral centerpieces or the table linens, but memories of a fun-filled day spent with your loved ones will last. That’s not something you can easily purchase. I hope you found these tips helpful as you prepare for the big day.