Bride, Groom: You Can’t Afford to be Average!
By Tim and Lisa Spooner
More than 1/3 of couples getting married in the United States pay for their own weddings. Even more couples in the U.S. pay for at least a portion of their wedding expenses.
If you are a bride or groom reading this article, then you are probably one of the couples who are paying for or at least helping to pay for their own wedding.
Even as more couples get involved in planning for and paying for their dream weddings, the wedding price tag continues to grow more forboding. In the year 2007, according to CostOfWedding.com, the average U.S. wedding cost was $28,800. This figure is expected to steadily rise in years to come.
Today’s bride and groom have become so desensitized to the incredible expense of planning a wedding that they hardly stop to think about how much money that really is. Let’s take a moment to put that $28,800 price tag in perspective and look at a couple ways to make your wedding more affordable.
First, let’s consider that $28,800 is more than most brides or grooms bring home from work in a year.
Now, suppose a couple wants to save up for their wedding so they don’t go into debt. If they are saving for a $28,800 wedding, they should consider how much they should feed their wedding savings piggy bank each month. If they can only afford to save, say, $300 per month, they should plan on saving for a full 8 years ($300 x 96 months [that's 8 years]=$28,800). What engaged couple is willing to wait 8 years to get married?
We haven’t even considered that it takes considerable discipline to save $300 each month. Some might need to wait longer as they can only save $150 a month or even less.
Most couples choose to get married within a year or two of their engagement. If they are paying for their own wedding as more than 1/3 of couples do, they often plan their expensive wedding courtesy Visa or Mastercard. That saves them the trouble of budgeting and saving for all those years before marriage. Instead of saving before marriage for their wedding day, they spend those delicate first years of marriage after the wedding day struggling with debt and living uncomfortably frugal lives together. Their credit card company keeps them under its thumb for years as interest piles up on interest and the poor couple barely scrapes by.
We wish that we were exaggerating here but all too often this is the scenario in which young couples find themselves. All so they could glory in one splendid day marking the beginning of their marriage. Hoping that somehow the perfection of the wedding day would somehow rub off on each succeeding day of marriage, the couple had poured a year’s salary into that big day. The reality is that the expense of that wedding day is paid for day after day of their married lives and they realize all too late that financial stress is the number one killer of marriages.
Americans with their individualistic attitudes tend to believe that they are special and that the rules do not apply to them. Likewise, couples planning their weddings tend to think that they will be the exception. That they will somehow spend less than most spend or that they will somehow be able to pay their credit cards off later without much problem.
Well, if you are not careful, you will soon discover that you are not exempt from the norms and that you are all too average. You will discover yourself in a quagmire of financial stress and marital disharmony day after day for years all for the sake of a wedding that was bought at a much too high of a price – we regret to say that it could even cost you your marriage.
What should you do? Stop being average. Stop planning your wedding the way most young brides and grooms plan their weddings.
Set a realistic spending allowance for your wedding – a spending allowance that you and your lover can live with. Go into your wedding planning with your eyes wide open.
You really can have a wonderful wedding day on whatever price you are able to pay – whether that be $5,000 or just $500. You would be amazed at how far that money can go when you are committed to planning your dream wedding on your chosen budget.
We were personally willing to spend no more than $2,000 for our wedding. We worked out a strategy that allowed us to stay under budget while planning a very memorable and special wedding day that is on par with any other wedding we have attended.
We have written a wedding planner to guide you in your wedding planning. In the wedding planner, we guide you in creating a reasonable wedding budget and show you step by step just what you need to do to see your dream wedding come true while staying under budget.
You can’t afford to be average. Instead, be amazing!
Wedding Planning on a Budget is available as an instant download which can be read on your computer or printed at your convenience. To get your copy of this powerful wedding planning guide visit the Wedding Planner Download Page
We wish you the best and hope that you have an amazing wedding and a wonderful marriage together for the rest of your lives.
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