Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Budget

While you’re dreaming of beautiful flowers and a tiered cake, remember that weddings cost money. Sit down and figure out how much you and your fiance have, and are prepared to spend, on your wedding. Plan to meet with any family members who wish to contribute to your funds, and find out who is giving how much and for what so there are no misunderstandings when the check is due.

Don’t just assume that mom and dad are picking up the tab for the entire wedding. You need to sit down with them, without your fiancé, and discuss what their intentions are. Are they paying for the entire event or just parts of it? Are there strings attached to the check they give you? You need to know before you take their money if there are any dos and don’ts they will be insisting on.

If you’re unsure how to approach the topic, tell your parents that you and your groom have been discussing the type of wedding you want and how much savings you have to spend. Let them interject their thoughts and comments to further the discussion.

Some parents, or grandparents, may decide to contribute to certain items: grandma may buy your dress, dad may want to pay for the cake. If relatives are paying for only certain items, then find out more than just what item they’re paying for. Find out how much they are expecting to pay for that item.

For example, you may be excited when grandma says, “I’m buying you your wedding dress,” but you don’t want to be surprised when she gives you $250, which is probably what she paid 50 years ago for her gown, and thinks it's enough to cover yours.

Be open and upfront with your folks, but don’t demand money. Paying for your wedding is voluntary, not mandatory.

Once you have spoken to your parents (and your fiancé has spoken to his), decide how much the two of you want to contribute to the wedding budget to get a total amount.

The piggybank featured above comes with a surprise inside. You may find extra change, or even $100 bill to help pay for the wedding.


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