The Who, What, and When of Paying for a Wedding

cashPlanning a wedding can be unbelievably hectic. It almost seems like you have to be in several places at the same time and the word multi-tasking can take on a whole new significance and you try to make sure everything is just perfect. Then the bills start rolling in and you begin to think, “Why didn’t we just elope?” Perhaps we could have scaled back on certain items but now it is too late to cancel the order.

Don’t let this happen to you. Put a stop to it before the planning even begins by carefully planning your budget. Gather everyone together who will help pay for the wedding and itemize your expenditure and break it up so you have a clear picture before you get in too deep. While this may take some time, in the end you will be glad you did it.

Have a Budget Meeting

A budget meeting is extremely important. Traditionally, the brides’ parents pay for the wedding and the grooms’ parents pay for the reception. The groom pays for the honey moon and the gifts for the groomsmen and the bride pays for the gifts for the bridesmaids and any other necessary gifts.

However, this arrangement may not be possible for many reasons. It is important that the bride and groom sit down together with both their families and determine who is willing to spend how much and on what. This will allow you to determine a more accurate and less stressful budget for your wedding.

Split the Costs

It is now becoming more common that everyone splits the wedding expenditure equally or even for the bride and groom to pay for the weddings themselves. This gives the bride and groom more control over what happens at the wedding. It can also prevent mishaps. When you leave it up to someone else to pay you are at their mercy. If your mother-in-law to be doesn’t think chocolate is appropriate for a wedding cake she may refuse to pay for it you are then stuck last minute with the decision of having the cake you want and paying for it your self and having the cake she wants and having it paid for. Your own mother may be equally difficult to work with. For instance, if you don’t want to wear her wedding dress you may have to pay for a dress yourself. This is why it is a good idea to determine a budget prior to planning.

Set Payment Due Dates

Once you have decided on a budget, it is a good idea to make sure everyone who is paying for a share knows when their payments are due. Often invitations require a down payment in full. Caterers will also expect at least a down payment if not full payment prior to ordering the food. Stay on top of everyone’s payments. You don’t want to miss your rehearsal dinner, because you are shopping for food to serve wedding guest. This may well happen if you do not clearly communicate about all aspects of the planning and payment process.

It is not safe to assume that everything will go as planned. Always check both before and after plans are made so that you can avoid dire mistakes. Budgeting a wedding takes time and patience. Your life will be easier if your planning-and-paying team communicates well.


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