Oh no, here we go… do we have to talk about the B-word in life that we all hate? This stupid little....BUDGET? Every time I plan any event, the song that comes into my mind is “If I Was A Rich Girl” by Gwen Stefani because oh baby, I would host some pretty dope events and weddings if money wasn’t an issue. But it is, so here we are - I’m typing about how you can save money and you’re reading about how you can save money!
Believe it or not, saving for a wedding put us in check. I didn't realize the potential we had to save as much as we did; but when you really want something, you make it happen. If you want to hear more details about how we saved, listen to our podcast episode about the engagement process here.
If you read my blog post, "You're Engaged! First Six Steps to Plan Your Wedding", I talked a bit about budget and finances. When creating your budget, you have to be as realistic as possible. In California for 200-250 people, you're most likely going to spend $30,000 - $40,000 for a pretty good wedding including a day-of planner, but double that if you're getting married in cities like San Francisco! You can try to spend less but you might also find yourself stressing out more. At the end of the day though, be realistic with how much you can save (and do NOT take a loan out for your wedding)! Mhm. I said it!
My husband and I paid for our wedding by ourselves in cash. We saved for 1.5 years before getting married and knew that we didn't want to kick off our marriage with more debt. It wasn't easy at first, especially with how much we had to cut back from eating or going out, but once we saw how fast our savings could grow, we were determined to reach our savings goal!
We opened up a joint savings account where we would deposit $400-$500 from each paycheck, so that was about $800-$1000 a month since we got paid bi-weekly. Every time we deposited the money, we recorded it in our Excel sheet savings plan. By doing so, it helped us to know that our plan was working and we were also able to identify if we could save even more. Below is my downloadable savings plan for you to use.
The savings account I would recommend is Wealthfront, an online savings account. When we opened it up together, they had a 2.25% APY. It's not going to be as high right now since the world is in a financial crisis, so search other online savings accounts or money market accounts that best suits your needs. If Wealthfront is for you, please use my link here to sign up!
Our wedding budget sheet was something I constantly looked at every week; if not every other day. In my budget sheet, it helped to have three different columns: Estimate Costs, Goal Costs and Actual Costs. You can download the file below.
Estimate Costs: After researching and receiving quotes from multiple vendors in your city, this is the average estimate of each section you think you might spend.
Goal Costs: This is what you would like to realistically spend in each section based on what's most important to you.
Actual Costs: Once you find the vendor that's right for you, enter the actual amount you would be spending so you can adjust other wedding sections accordingly to fit your budget.
One of the last things we did that helped us was opening a joint credit card together where we can accrue extra points for travel. DO NOT get a credit card if you're not good with credit cards! We felt comfortable to do it because we knew we were only using the credit card as a tool, especially with how much we were spending on the wedding. We had the cash, but we would pay with our credit card just to get points, then pay it off with our wedding savings right away.
The credit card we opened up was Chase Sapphire. If you're interested in signing up, please use my link here. We were able to accrue points that covered both of our round trip flights to Thailand for our honeymoon, as well as three nights at the Lebua Hotel in Bangkok. Not bad, right? We saved money in the long run by using the credit card as a tool!
Alright my engaged couples, that's how you can save for your wedding. I hope you found this helpful and useful. If you download those templates above, you'll see other tabs on the bottom that can help you with budgeting and saving for your wedding. As always, if you have any questions, holla at ya girl! Happy Saving, party people! Spend wisely. YOU GOT THIS!
Sending you all the love & confetti,
Follow me on IG: @celebratewithame