A wedding is one of the biggest expenses many of us will face, either for ourselves or our children. According to a 2017 survey from TheKnot.com, the average cost of a wedding is a whopping $33,391! If you pay for a wedding on credit, the saying “Something borrowed, something blue” becomes all too true. So how can you pay for that dream wedding and not go into debt? Follow these simple steps ahead of time so there is no stress during the wedding planning.
Step 1 — SET A BUDGET.
The costs of a wedding can add up quickly, from the hefty price of a venue and flowers to catering and a band. Make a list of everything you want to spend money on and shop around for the best deal. Some venues offer discounts for an atypical wedding day, such as a weekday or a holiday.
Step 2 — WORK OUT HOW MUCH TO SAVE EACH MONTH.
Once you’ve set a budget and worked out all the costs, figure out how much you will need to save per month and for how long. Be realistic about what you can achieve and afford. Saving in smaller chunks will seem less daunting than that big number you are working toward. If you have to save for five years to afford the $50,000 wedding you want, you might want to reconsider and see where you can cut costs.
Step 3 — GET STARTED.
The sooner you begin, the more manageable the cost will be. At Progress Bank, we offer several ways to save. First, you can have the amount you want to save each month automatically debited from your account into your savings account or special “wedding account.” As that amount grows, you can put it in a CD for six months or longer to gain extra savings. Or add in our new SaveUp program available this Spring, which will allow you to round up every purchase and put that amount aside in your savings account. Those few pennies add up quickly over time. Talk to one of our bankers about what options are available to you for savings and investing.
Step 4 — CUT BACK ON EXPENSES.
Do you belong to a gym, club or subscription service that takes a monthly sum out of your account? Cutting back on these types of expenses can have some of the quickest effects on your account balance. Make a habit of negotiating with your cell phone and cable companies each year for a better deal. Consider whether you need Netflix, Amazon Prime, Birchbox or Spotify or if they are merely a want that you can sacrifice in order to have the wedding you desire.
Step 5 — GET RID OF LITTLE SPENDING HABITS THAT ADD UP.
Have you heard of the latte factor? It’s that quick cup of coffee you get at Starbucks at five dollars a pop per day or that $10-15 lunch instead of packing a sandwich for work. Limit the amount of thoughtless spending you do and soon you’ll see extra room for your wedding budget.
Step 6 — KEEP SAVING.
Getting into the savings habit now is something that will translate well into the rest of your married life. Having a savings account dedicated to a down payment on your first house, special vacations, children’s education, or travel is a good idea and will help make saving more fun. With a little planning and help from your Progress banker, you can have the wedding of your dreams without going into debt for it. And wouldn’t that be a less stressful way to start off your married life?