(Closed) whats a budget?

posted 7 years ago in Money
Post # 17
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Dh and i didn’t have any extra money saved or put aside for a wedding either when we started planning.  I knew how much I could afford to save once I got a pt job to help with the wedding fund and how much I was comforttable spending plus how much a typical low budget wedding cost in my area after doing some research.  I worked and saved and put deposits down.  Then I saved the rest as time went by for final payments.  I literally planned and made a tentative budget before I had all the money then adjusted the budget (and vendor search) accordingly as the savings built up.  We paid off our wedding in full before the wedding day and have no debt.  

Post # 18
9134 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

@AndysCraftsNmore:  Just because a few companies quote you prices doesn’t mean that you have to use them or that there aren’t better vendors with lower prices.  In order to avoid the stress of running out of money later down the road, you need to set a budget.  Figure out how much can you two confortably save in 12 months and go from there.  Starting out with no concept of a budget at all is a terrible idea and will likely cause costs to spiral out of control.  Remember that if you book a vendor and pay them a deposit but you are unable to save up the balance in time, they can cancel your wedding AND keep your deposit.

Post # 19
582 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I think this is definitely manageable…keeping in mind that there are many costs that pop up along the way aside from the major ones you listed, even if you decide to DIY a lot of things.

5K sounds outrageous for a DJ (even with photobooth).  Based on what you can save, set a realistic budget for DJ and photographer and stick to that.  Look around for recommendations here on WB and using The Knot and WeddingWire (although with caution, as some of the reviews seem inflated to me).  If you have extra money towards the end and still want the candy bar, lighting and photobooth, go for it.

When you say your family is paying for the reception, does that include rental/site fee, and all food and drinks, taxes, tips, etc?

Post # 20
662 posts
Busy bee

My only advice on this is that you should not leave the payment of everything until the last minute.  We’ve put down our deposits, and we are paying one off at a time when we have the money saved. 

They all have a deadline of a week before the wedding.  I cannot imagine how stressed I’d be a week before the wedding if I hadn’t paid for everything


Post # 21
208 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

We’re doing our wedding on 5k for 72 people. We’re both students and he works part time and I have no time to work at all (medschool). However, I am doing summer research that gave me a stipend of ~3700, he’s contributing about ~1500. So with about $200 in wiggle room we actually are have a “proper” wedding. 

What our budget includes:

Dress and accessories $250

His suit $200

Photographer $850 (7 hours)

Food $2700 – we chose the deluxe buffet which costs the same as the 3 course plated meal but we’re a fan of buffets and everyone being able to eat as much of the foods they like

Silk flowers $54 (for the bridal party)

An outdoor ceremony $200

Save the dates, invitations, menus, programs, welcome signs $200 (including postage)

Silk floral centerpieces in glass bowls $100

Decor $250

Cake Buffet $150 – we’re having a two tier cake and then 4 other cakes from whole foods

iPOD DJ – $0

As far as I am concerned, we’re having a real wedding on the money we actually have. Some people might think silk flowers are cheap but no way I am spending hundreds on real flowers that’ll be tossed that very night. My wedding dress was only a $100 new from davids bridal, it fits my personality perfectly. Honestly, given a bigger budget there’s very little I would change about my wedding. The only thing I can think of is black napkins and tablecloths to fit our black, white, red theme and I hate how everything is sooo white. Our reception hall is the typical banquet hall but we’re doing everything we can to personalize it and we made sure the food is GOOD since food is the MOST IMPORTANT thing to us.

Post # 22
3460 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Do you have an emergency fund in case something happens?  (e.g. your car breaks down and you need to spend money to fix it)  Don’t book anything further till you have an emergency fund.

If you haven’t saved anything to date, how are you sure you’ll be able to make the lifestyle changes to save even the $7,000?  Until you’ve started saving and reliably can put away money each month, again, don’t book.  You particularly don’t need to book a DJ this far out.  (Heck, I was only engaged 11 months and had plenty of vendors to choose from.)

What are the other DJ quotes you’ve received?  $5000 seems **really** high.  I found a terrific deal of a good DJ for $600.  Do you really need lighting etc?

Are you prepared to pay the rest if your mom doesn’t?  Some bees have run into a crisis when family members who promised aid didn’t deliver.

In your budget, remember: gifts for wedding party and family, paper (invitations, stamps, thank yous, programs), accommodations for you, rings, license, officiant, decor (ceremony and reception…flowers are expensive but also things like aisle runners, ribbons, centerpieces, rentals), food, drinks, favors, dress alterations, lingerie, makeup, cake, cake topper….

You can skip some of that, but if you want it – add it to the budget!

We set a budget after some general research about what we could get for X amount.  We were fortunate to then receive a lot of that in gifts from our parents.  I then worked very hard to stay on budget – researching options, negotiating, DIY and shopping deals/sales.  I came in at $25 over a $25,000 budget.  I call that pretty darned good!  When an item was going to come in over budget (e.g. our rings quite a bit, my dress some, gifts for people), I reassessed what I needed to save on. 

Also, build in a 10% contingency.

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