(Closed) Setting a Wedding Budget?

posted 12 years ago in Money
Post # 17
461 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

That sound so lovely nicolby! I wish we had a family home we could have ours at , it seems so much more personable!

I really have to say that Deffinatly not going into debt is a the first rule of thumb. But like gigglebride , even though I’m no where near that point , I still think it would be better to be spending this money elsewhere. BUT  I still want a nice wedding. 
Calling in favors is another great money saving tip. A florist friend is helping with the flowers. And my Future Mother-In-Law is making almost all the decor!
I do understand where you are comming from , gigglebride! Having a tighter budget can work anywhere ,if that is what you have or would like, but you do have to work alittle harder to streach it. 

Post # 18
23 posts
  • Wedding: September 2008

NYC weddings are crazy as far as costs- the sky is the limit with the budget.  It seems like $60K weddings in NYC are not at all uncommon.

If you want to get a feel for what you get in each price range for a New York wedding, there is a fantastic "Spending Diaries" article in the Winter New York Wedding magazine.  Here is a link: http://nymag.com/weddings/planner/2007/winter/wedding_spending/.  It gives a breakdown of expenses for $13K, $37K, $80K, and $150K real weddings in NYC.  It was very helpful to me to see the difference in what you get in the city at each price range, and it helped me determine my budget.  Hope this helps!


Post # 19
228 posts
Helper bee

The cost of an average wedding was never a consideration for us.  We just set a number that we thought was reasonable to spend (not the maximum we could possibly afford), and have stuck with that.  Also, I’d set the budget *before* you start looking at venues, caterers, etc.  Once you set the budget, just make sure that everything fits in it, that’s all. 

If you think/hope that parents might help, talk to them before doing anything, and get a firm number on exactly how much (or which parts) they’d be willing to cover.  There are lots of stories about disappointment when things aren’t made clear and hoped-for funds aren’t there.

BaghdadBride is very wise.  Don’t go into debt.  It’s just a party, after all =)

Post # 20
402 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2008

yeah…we used the "what we could afford" method too.

 We are going slightly over bc we originally slated to spend $5k….our overal expenses will come to about $6200. i dont live in a major metro area though, so with lots of scoping around for the best deals, and gifts from friends and family, we’ve managed to keep our costs pretty low.

Post # 21
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

As someone who is getting married in Westchester County, I am familiar with the NYC outrageous-ness. Great advice from everyone, I also wanted to add something my sister in law told me. EVERYTHING is negotiable!! With our reception hall (which is also the ceremony site and hotel), I bargained everything and tore apart the contract until I was happy with it. I got them to give me extra stuff and definitely took extra liberties. Bottom line, they want your business, and the worst thing they’ll say is no. But definitely read those contracts and don’t sign anything until you’re happy with it!!!

Also, Niki, Gigglebride never said anything about 2 months salary for the wedding. =) Anyway, good luck!!

Post # 22
104 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2009

I was very stupid when it came to the budget. I actually thought that $10,000 was a ton of money for essentially a one day party. We had to revise this to $20,000 rather quickly with a guest list of 180 (mostly family!!!)  Seems the average food cost is $79 pp around here… that leaves very little for photographers and dresses and flowers and…..

Post # 23
57 posts
Worker bee

I can think of two ways to set a budget:

1: As suggested before, decide what you want to spend, and then choose your vendors etc to fit that amount.

The problem with this is you may find that there’s no way to fit the wedding you want into the budget you came up with.  I wanted a dinner reception for 150 people.  The first budget number I came up with would have paid for food, venue, and nothing else, even at the least expensive place I could find.  So I had to choose whether to compromise the dinner reception or guest list, or to compromise my budget.  Because we could afford it, the budget went up.

If, like me, you have some budget flexibility, there’s option 2 for budget creation that I came up with in hindsight:

2: Figure out what your venue and dinner is going to cost (call vendors, compare prices).  Double it.  That’s your budget.

(This is assuming you’re doing all the usual stuff – dress, photo, video, flowers, dj, and so on.  Certainly, there are weddings where almost all the budget is food.  And there are weddings where food and venue are done on the cheap.  But, I think 50% on food and venue is kind of average).

Hope this helps.

Post # 24
1 posts

well, if the ring is supposed to be a mans 3-month salary, shouldn’t the wedding be a year? Just a though … I’m not sure if there is a set presidence Linda  

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