To help you along during the various stages of the planning process, a wedding budget should be divided into expense categories. For instance, take invitations, entertainment, and photographer and determine how much you want to spend in each of these categories.
And, of course, these are not set in stone and can be adjusted along the way. After coming up with a preliminary budget, you might decide to divide the budget differently. For instance, you might decide that entertainment is more important than, let’s say, the wedding favors. So, you reduce the wedding favors budget and add it to the entertainment budget. The budget is still $15,000, but it’s now divided differently.
The key thing to emphasize here is to stay on budget. Even expensive weddings need to be planned around a budget to control costs and determine where the money can best be spent.
To start developing the budget, you should determine the expense categories for your wedding and estimate how much you would like to spend in each category. Then, as you receive responses from the requests for proposals from wedding professionals, you can adjust your budget accordingly. So, in the case that the photographer comes in at $250 under your set budget, then you can apply that to invitations, for instance.
Remember, developing a budget requires you to set priorities so that you can work the budget around. The budget must be based on what you and other contributors can afford and which categories you’re willing to spend more, or less, on. By being realistic, you can avoid the embarrassment of having to change plans due to a shortage of funds or even going into serious debt to finance your wedding. But, in any case, it allows you to plan more efficiently.
The number one way you can reduce the cost of the wedding is by controlling the guest list. To ensure the wedding day runs smoothly, keep in mind that some of the guests you invited may have special dietary or mobility needs. However, many issues can affect the ability to limit the guest list. So, set a goal for your list size. This is also an efficient way to keep costs in check.
You can print out our wedding expense checklist below to help you stay on budget and plan the perfect wedding.