Post # 1
I just read in the Feb/March issue of Brides Magazine that 79% of couples go over their budget.
So let’s get to it —
- If you’re married, did you go over budget or not?
- Any wisdom for the newly engaged Bees who are starting to plan their budgets?
DH and I stayed within our budget and I think a large part of that was due to three things: 1) our 18 month engagement meant more time to plan and shop around, 2) we meticulously detailed our budget, revisited, revised, and updated it constantly, 3) I learned SO much about wedding planning and how to avoid costly (time &/or $$) issues by religiously (crazily?) following the WB boards.
Our primary budgeting resources were a free Excel budget template that I found online, and inputting estimated numbers from http://www.costofwedding.com for the zip code where we were getting married; we then customized the est. budget numbers based on our priorities (e.g. live band was high priority for us). I found costofwedding.com’s averages and ranges to be eerily accurate.
Post # 2
I didn’t have a set budget, but if I did, I surely wouldn’t have gone over. My wedding ended up being very inexpensive.
Post # 3
Nope. I had a spreadsheet down to the last roll of ribbon. But I also knew there WASN’T money to go over budget either. We spent half our budget for our honeymoon in Italy and the better we stayed in budget for the wedding part meant more spending money.
Post # 4
We didn’t sit down and make a budget at first. We gathered prices and shopped around, but we did go over what I thought a wedding would cost lol I thought 10k, but with everything included we are looking at 20k, which is our budget now. We are still changing things around, but won’t go over that.
Post # 5
you get slanted numbers on polls/posts oike rhis, but we were under budget. We set both a “max” budget and a “like to” budget. We were a couple thousand over our “like to” budget, but well below our “max” budget. I was also anal about my budget spreadsheet! We also budgeted as if everyone would come, so numbers dropped once we had some declines, but we didn’t turn around and spend that money, we just enjoyed the lower budget.
Ultimately, for us, we were able to acieve our priorities without a lot of problem. And I tried to be very concious about needs vs wants. Everyone needs a chair. Everone does not need a chair cover/sash. I’m a very practicle person, in life, so that helps.
I think attitude is also hugely important. We were very clear that we weren’t trying impress anyone or be competitive. We just wanted to have fun wish our nearest and dearest.
And, perhaps most importantly, I stopped reading magazines and blogs and watching wedding TV very early in the process, because it creates unrealistic expectations!
Post # 6
We knew we had a maximum ceiling limit, and used this to have a budget of estimates. When actual costs came in, they were entered into the spreadsheet, and we are currently about $2500 under budget.
A few items we were way over budget for- my dress was estimated at $600 and I actually spent $1450, with my Mum contributing $450. My FI’s suit was estimated at $300 and he spent $380.
We clawed back money through things like our caterer, where we got a discount for cash for the staff and our flowers, which I am DIY-ing from silks. I have also done a lot of DIY for the wedding, and my very talented Mum is making us our cake.
As we are hoping to buy a block of land later this year, every dollar we saved goes towards our dream of semi-rural living!
Post # 7
We don’t necessarily have a budget. I shopped around and found the best deals. I knew i didn’t feel comfortable paying over 18 grand for an all inclusive venue. I managed to find one that is a little over 16 grand so i got a good deal there. My Fiance and i are going dutch on the wedding so we both end up paying a little over 8 grand each.
Post # 8
we had a budget and went over about $1,000 (but we had kind of built in a cushion because we figured there would be some unexpected things pop up at the last minute)…i was impressed that we didn’t go over more than that 🙂
Post # 9
I’m not married yet, but I am obsessive about my budget spreadsheet! A friend who is similarly business-minded shared her wedding budget spreadsheet (with actual costs) with me, which was a really helpful starting point. I review it all the time to make sure nothing needs to be re-evaluated. While there are a few areas we may come in overbudget on, there are other areas I know I budgeted too much but haven’t brought them down yet to keep the budget conservative. We also have 5% of our total budget built in as a buffer in case of unexpected costs, so we may or may not dip into that. As of now, the only thing that should bring us in over budget on the whole is if we have more guests than we are anticipating.
Post # 10
I have been very careful with our budget and I actually think we will come around $5K less than the highest number in the budget. Even if there are some unexpected things, we still have that as a buffer so I don’t anticipate going over the budget.
Post # 11
We had a budget of $30K and ended up coming in around $4K under budget. Like you, I had a very detailled spreadsheet and I tracked every expense (even if it was just a $12 Michael’s purchase), so I know we came in underbudget.
We had taken what we knew was our budget and split it up according to guidelines I had found online (e.g. 45% for reception, 15% attire), and then each time we signed a contract, would revise and edit the budget. Therefore, when we knew our reception cost was going to be more than budgeted, we cut down other areas or budgets and constantly evaluated our priorities to ensure we got the wedding we wanted without going over budget.
Post # 12
I was under budget pretty much exclusively because I set my budget as if everyone I invited said yes. So – my definition of my budget gave me pretty good chances. We certainly overspent on some categories still, but in the end I stayed under my original budget.
Post # 13
We don’t have a budget, but we did originally guesstimate what we thought we would spend-25k- and now we are at about 50k soooo we def “went over”. Through the planning process we realized that some things we originally planned on skipping to save money were actually important to us so our costs grew. My parents also chipped in more than I thought so it allowed us to spend money in other areas increasing our overall cost Of the wedding. It will be interesting to see where we end up.
Post # 14
We don’t have a budget. Eloping to City Hall certainly will not break the bank!
Post # 15
While we haven’t gotten married yet, we’re pretty much guaranteed to go over budget. We set a really low budget to begin with and agreed to keep the guest list small in order to not over-spend since we were planning to pay for it all ourselves. However, we both have huge families and kept getting the whole “why aren’t you inviting cousin X when you invited cousin y?” etc. Well, my parents surprised us by telling us that they planned to chip in some $$ as a gift for our wedding. It isn’t a ton, but it basically covers the cost of going with the larger room in our venue and the food to feed people so we can expand our guestlist. Basically, Fiance & I will end up spending the same amount we’d planned, but our total wedding budget grew by the amount of my parent’s contribution.