(Closed) Asking Grooms Semi-Distant Relative to Use their House as Venue

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
Member
6331 posts
Bee Keeper

Does Sally like to entertain at her home? Is she easygoing? Does she like weddings?

It wouldn’t hurt to ask, but I wouldn’t get my hopes up in case she says no. Don’t make her feel obligated to open up her house for you, maybe say you’re brainstorming and wanting to see what she thinks. If you do ask, I’d have a game plan of what you’re envisioning so she knows what she might be in for. 

Post # 4
Member
1441 posts
Bumble bee

There was a thread awhile back about a family member who had agreed to host the wedding, then after more thought decided against it.  It was causing some difficulty, because now the couple had spent their budget on places other than the venue.  IIRC after some thought they had reservations and liability concerns about having lots of strangers and alcohol.  Other possible concerns, parking, bathrooms.  And, it’s different hosting family events vs. events with many non-family members. 

If you somehow float the idea – be upfront about those issues and give them time to consider it.  If they decide against it it’s better to know up front than find out after the budget has been spent elsewhere. 

Post # 5
Member
13772 posts
Honey Beekeeper

The second hand story about the gardener notwithstanding, personally, I’d need her to volunteer enthusiastically on her own without being asked. The most I’d do is have  FI’s mom casually mention that you are looking for a local venue. If she wants to offer, she will.

Post # 6
Member
5995 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

View original reply
coralmermaid:  Leave it to Fiance. If FI’s comfortable with it, go along with it.

And if his mother’s close, probably best for Fiance to discuss it with his mother, and see where that goes.

Post # 7
Member
1705 posts
Bumble bee

I guess it depends on the size of the wedding, but to me, that’s a pretty big ask. If they agree, I would draw up a contract to protect you both in case anything goes wrong. 

Post # 8
Member
559 posts
Busy bee

If the family is close knit you might have your Fiance ask his mom if she’ll guage a response. That way you know what you’re up against. If you’re going to ask though be sure to plan out how you’d make everything happen, including rentals, guest list size, logisitics and a schedule. We had our reception at my parents house and even though they’re my parents they still were concerned about how to pull of logistics. Important things like enough toilets (1 for every 75 guests minimum), potential floor damage (will people have access to the house?) and space for the caterer (is the kitchen large enough, is there an area that can easily serve food and beverages) are easily overlooked. Also, you’ll need to consider tents/shelter for a rainy day/sunny day plan. 

Post # 9
Member
1767 posts
Buzzing bee

View original reply
coralmermaid: Are you offering to pay them? That might make it easier.

Post # 10
Member
2340 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

View original reply
coralmermaid:  I don’t know what ettiquette dictates on this, so this is just my personal thought process. The consensus is that it’s never ok to ask parents, or other family members for financial contributions to your wedding. To me it seems even worse to ask a not very close family member to use their home. I think the only way it would be ok is if you offer to pay her whatever the going rate is to use her home as your wedding venue. 

Post # 11
Member
3106 posts
Sugar bee

I would feel awful putting your FMIL’s cousin on the spot.  Even if she adores entertaining, and hosted her son’s wedding, that doesn’t mean her house is a venue.  You don’t know the veracity of the alleged gardener’s wedding she allowed to take place at her home, but if it did happen, the circumstances are also unknown.  

The beauty about renting a venue (and paying for it) is that you can be demanding (to a reasonable extent); you have a right to reasonable expectations.  That would not be the case if you held your wedding at that house.  

Personally, even if she offered, I would decline.  Graciously, of course.

Post # 12
Member
3080 posts
Sugar bee

I wouldn’t ask. As prior poster said, hosting her own son’s wedding is a lot different than that of a semi-distant relative.

I know that where I live, there are local zoning rules, noise ordinances, and neighbors to consider and I don’t think any of them would wholeheartedly approve of Sally turning her property into a frequent wedding venue.

 

Post # 13
Member
8452 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

That’s huge and to me it would be too big a favor to ask. I wouldn’t do it. If his mom is close with this cousin, she could drop a hint or two but if the cousin doesn’t pick up on it. leave it alone. I would not put someone in that position.

Post # 14
Member
424 posts
Helper bee

I wouldn’t ask as i wouldn’t want to put anyone on the spot especially a relative that neither of you are close to. She may well agree to it because she feels she has no choice which could cause future problems.

 

Post # 15
Member
1465 posts
Bumble bee

Yeah I also wouldn’t ask.  That is a HUGE thing to ask of someone and can put them in a very awkward position with the rest of the family.  and….. if you guys do it, other cousins will be asking also.

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