Love is priceless. Alas, someone forgot to tell all those industries that make money off weddings, because the cost of getting hitched these days is pretty eye-watering. Still, this is one of the most important days of your life, and you’re not going to let something as petty as money get in the way of having a wedding to remember! But if you’ve got grand plans that’ll make your ceremony and party ones to remember, how do you go about paying for it? We take a look at some options below.
You might be excited about your engagement and want to host the day as soon as possible, but there are benefits to having it way out there in the future, the main being that you’ll be able to save up money! Think about it. Whatever the projected cost of your wedding is, it’ll be easier to divide that cost over, say, 24 months than it would 12 months. If you make it too near in the future, you might have to tighten your belts right up until the big day, and who wants that? Give yourself time to put money away into the savings account instead.
Top Up With Cutbacks
Most people aren’t all that good at saving money. Sure, they can divert 15% of their income into a savings account, but why stop there? The remaining 85% of their income might not be being used as well as it could be. Take a look at where you’re currently spending your money, and see if anything can go. If you cut cable television, for instance, that could be an extra $60 in your wedding fund A MONTH, and with cheaper online TV options available, it’s not like you’ll be missing out on much. And what about that takeout lunch you eat every day? Make your own, and that’s an additional $1000 a year in savings.
The best way to afford your wedding is to simply...cut back those costs. Sounds simple enough, but how do you do it? Well, one way is to add a degree of flexibility into some of your decisions. You might have a vision of what the party is going to look like, but does it matter where or when it is? You can make big savings by getting married in the “low” wedding season. Everything becomes much more affordable if you’re not paying a premium just to get hitched at the height of summer, for instance.
Paying on Credit
The thing about paying for a wedding is that the costs don’t all come at once. They come in dribs and drabs. And actually, this is a good thing, because it breaks down the expenses into manageable chunks rather than just having to pay in one lump sum. Here, credit cards are your friend. If you don’t currently have a credit card, take a look at the best secured card. You’ll be able to use it like a regular credit card and pay off the balance each month, when you’ve been paid. It’ll make splashing out for those costs that arrive in the middle of the month all the more straightforward.
Claiming Back from Guests
You’re getting married, and you know that the guests are going to turn up with a bunch of household items as presents. It’s thoughtful, but if you’re already living together, then you might not need all those blenders and microwaves. Instead, why not ask for a cash donation? This practice is actually pretty common in certain countries, such as Spain. The guest turns up, has a great night, and leaves $100 or whatever they can afford to pay. That can go straight into your bank account, and help replenish the savings that spent on the wedding day.
Get a Second Income
If you’re positively stretched to the limit when it comes to your income, then you might not have the financial flexibility to put money away into your savings. In this case, you can look at adding a second source of income. Most people think that their wage is all the money in the world they can have. Actually, it should just be a starting point. There are plenty of easy work from home jobs that just about anyone with an internet connection and some spare time can start up. You might not get the equivalent of a full-time income, but you’ll get enough to put towards your special day.
Help from the Family
It’s a bit old-fashioned to have the father of the bride pay for the wedding, although sometimes we wish it weren’t. Still, just because they might not foot the whole bill, it’s possible that they can help out. And not just the father either; everyone in the clan can pitch in. Obviously, it’s best not to ask if you know that they’re struggling with money, but if they’re doing pretty well, they may like to contribute. Instead of asking for an outright cash donation, you could ask if anybody would be willing to pitch in for, say, the photographer.
Selling Old Items
It is staggering how much unused stuff people keep in their home. Studies have shown that the average home has hundreds of dollars worth of unused goods lying in drawers. If you’re not using it, then why do you have it? Put it on eBay, and raise some much needed cash. You’ll be putting money towards your wedding fund, and clearing space at the same time. It’s a win-win situation!
What You Can Afford
Finally, keep in mind that there’s always a way to have a special wedding, no matter what your budget is. If you’re not flush with cash, scale down your ambitions slightly and find a compromise. You might just find that your day turns out to be even more special because you did things your own way rather than stretching yourself beyond your means and putting yourself in financial difficulties. It’ll be magical no matter what you spend!