The big day, a day every girl dreams about! Well I know I have been dreaming of this day for as long as I can remember. It only took my Financé 7 years, a house and 2 beautiful boys later before he finally put a ring on it. And now the planning begins, where to start?
I went to my first bridal expo and wasn’t that overwhelming, planning a wedding is going to be more stressful than I thought. I think the first thing to consider is to make a wedding budget, this needs to be based on what you can afford and it is important to stick to this.
There were over 120,000 registered weddings in Australia last year with 43% of them staying within their budget, 35% blew their budget and 18% didn’t have one.
So what does the average wedding cost these days?
According to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission’s latest data, the average wedding in Australia costs $36,200 with food, alcohol and the venue being the most expensive $18,683, then wedding clothing and accessories $4,271, photography $3,983, entertainment $2,896, flowers and decorations $2,896, ceremony $941, and cars, hair, makeup, accommodation etc. costing $2,534.
There are a number of options you could use to manage your budget. For example, through excel by keeping a spreadsheet of the budget and cost, what you have paid and still need to pay etc., or by using accounting software such as Xero where you could run a report on budgeted vs actual costings.
You could also set up a wedding savings bank account and have your employer transfer a portion of your pay into that nominated bank account.
Here are a few wedding savings tips you could consider –
- Talk about money early with your partner and your parents if they are involved;
- Prioritise your dreams and start saving early;
- Shop around and get lots of quotes;
- Don’t tell suppliers that what you are buying is for a wedding;
- Cut your guest list (Ask yourself – would you spend $150 taking that person out for dinner);
- Save on decorating costs by doing them yourself;
- Spread out your wedding bills across a few months so you don’t get all the bills at once
The most important thing to do to stop the big day becoming an even bigger expense is to make sure you set up a budget, revise that budget regularly and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.
I will be doing my best to balance having the wedding of my dreams within a budget that we can manage. I will let you know how things go as the planning and budgeting continues.