Managing your wedding budget

When you’re planning your wedding, it’s absolutely crucial that you stay on track with your big day budget. Keeping an eye on what you’re spending isn’t the most enjoyable of wedding tasks but it’s definitely the most important. If you’re wondering about managing your wedding budget or if you’d like to some tips to help you allocate your funds, then read on…

Let’s start right at the beginning as you set your total spend and, once you’ve got your maximum figure agreed, factor in a 10% contingency. So, if you’ve got £15,000 in the wedding pot, aim to spend no more than £13,500. Giving yourself this buffer means that if an unexpected cost crops up, you don’t have to cut into other areas to meet the bill. Of course, if you stick brilliantly to your budget and have this money left as the wedding day approaches, you can use it to upgrade your drinks for example or treat yourself on honeymoon. However, having a contingency fund will definitely help you relax.

managing your wedding budget

Images: Left via Pinterest | Middle via Rock My Wedding | Right via District Weddings

It’s also really important to think about ALL the costs involved with your wedding. Of course you can note down prices from venues, photographers, florists and other suppliers but it’s the ‘other’ costs that can quickly mount up and push you over budget. Here are just some of the potential costs that it’s easy to miss:

  • Travel – does the cost that you’ve been quoted by a supplier include their travel costs?
  • Trials – don’t forget that hair and makeup trials need to be paid for so check these prices with your hair and makeup artist.
  • Postage – sending your wedding invitations can easily cost £100 or more, depending on the size of your envelopes.
  • Food – no, not for your guests, for suppliers. Bands, photographers and other suppliers will often request meals. How much will these cost you?
  • Alterations – always include the cost of alterations in your wedding dress budget. Find out from your boutique what they charge and what you might need.

Also remember that there could well be costs after your wedding too so factor these into your budget. Posting out thank you cards, prints of photos and wedding dress dry cleaning will easily swallow hundreds of pounds.

Create a list of all of the wedding costs that you know about and even those that you think you might have to pay. Don’t miss things out when you write this list just so the figures work out! It’s much better to know the ‘worst case scenario’ so you can be sure you can cover all the bills.

how to keep to your wedding budget

Images: Left via Wedding Chicks | Middle via Brides | Right via Once Wed

So, now you’ve included ALL the wedding costs in your budget, how do you manage your spend and stay on track? Here are our top tips:

  • Ask that potential suppliers provide really detailed quotes. This means that you can see exactly what’s included and compare quotes more easily.
  • ALWAYS check terms and conditions and read contracts fully before you sign so that you know that there aren’t any hidden costs.
  • Confirm whether VAT is applicable. A quote that looks really great can actually blow your budget when an invoice arrives with an extra 20% on top.
  • Create reminders in your calendar so that you know you’re always on top of payments to suppliers. Knowing when bills are due will really help you budget.
  • Before you buy something or book another supplier, know where this money will come from. Spending more in one area will mean that you have to cut back in others.
  • Focus on your priorities. If food and drink were really important to you, make sure that you have what you want here, even if you have to forgo other things.
  • If family members have agreed to contribute towards the costs of the wedding, be brave and have a conversation so that you know exactly how much they’ll pay. It’s easy for someone to say ‘I’ll buy your wedding dress’ but you need to know what figure they have in mind before you go shopping.
  • Remember that all those ‘little’ things really add up. Don’t get carried away shopping online!
  • Wedding DIY is really popular but before you leap in, do your research with costs, especially if you’re hoping to save money. Materials, equipment and all the things you need can become quite costly.

Your wedding budget shouldn’t be a scary – if you’re sensible and if you know exactly where all your money is going, it will actually help you focus on your plans and make sure that when you reach your wedding day, you can relax and enjoy the occasion. Remember that you’re in charge of what you spend and you can absolutely boss your budget!

Written by Tamryn Lawrence


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