How to Create the Best Wedding Budget for your Big Day
Updated: Jul 21, 2021
We all know money is a sensitive subject but creating a budget for your Wedding Day can make it a comfortable topic. Start with your final number. How much are you willing to spend for the entire day? Let's use an example, the magic number of $20,000 is your firm final number from the bachelorette celebrations to the Wedding Day to the honeymoon vacation. Now, follow the steps below to come up with your Wedding Budget.
After you've finalized your budget number - make a list of all of the things you want for your wedding. Flowers, DJ, Food, Favors etc. Decide what you want to include; do you have a separate budget for your honeymoon? Or your wedding night hotel stay? Simple tools like excel can be a great space for lists and almost all of the wedding applications for planning allow you to add in your costs.
Start shopping around for vendors and come up with an average cost. If the majority of flower vendors are charging $1,000 for everything you want, write it down as $1,200. It's better to over-estimate the price then find yourself paying extra later. And best-case scenario, they quote you under what you budgeted, you can move that money to another item. Something to consider as well when shopping for venues is that most places REQUIRE you to use their preferred vendors. This can be very challenging when trying to budget, especially in areas that you were hoping to save a little. If that’s the case, prioritize a venue that gives you more flexibility.
After adding in your estimated cost, use a SUM formula in an Excel spreadsheet to quickly find your total. If you are using a wedding application, it will automatically add your total as you put in the cost of your vendors.
a. Are you over budget? If so, start determining your non-negotiables, i.e. what you absolutely CAN NOT live without. Maybe you find there are more than a few items in your No-Expenses-Spared Dream Wedding List that you don’t actually NEED and can cut. This is tough, but you can still adjust some spending areas to make your vision possible. Check in with your vendors to see if they can work with you. Are there any discounts available? Are you bargain shopping and using coupons for your local craft store? Have you asked your friends who recently Wed what they have to lend? The best advice when over budget is to decide what really matters for your wedding day.
b. Are you under budget? This is great news, and you are a unicorn. Maybe don't look for a place to spend that money right away but keep the extra as a cushion. There is always a chance last minute you must pay a little more for alterations or your horse drawn carriage has a flat. This is a great "problem" to have.