When You and Your Future Spouse Must Pay for the Wedding
Once upon a time, it was expected that the parents of the bride would cover the expenses related to the wedding festivities. There were, of course, a few exceptions, often paid for by the groom’s parents. However, in modern times this has changed. It is far more common these days for the bride and groom to cover the costs themselves. Much of this is related to the age of marriage. While it was once normal to be wed at an age as young as 18, and most had walked the aisle by the age of 25, it is now far more common to wait. Brides and grooms are very often in their 30s or even their 40s before they say “I will”. That means that in the majority of cases, they have both been living on their own, rather than at their parents’ expense, for many years.
Unfortunately, even for the well-established couple, the cost of a wedding can be very intimidating. The average wedding in the US last year cost upwards of $35,000. The average salary in the United States is only $50,000. That means, assuming both have reached the average salary, that 35% of the couples’ income for the year must be spent on the big day.
Of course, you don’t have to spend $35,000 to be wed. There are many ways to cut costs. Simply being a very smart shopper, willing to do many price comparisons and await deals, can save you thousands of dollars. Also, including certain DIY elements can reduce the financial burden. However, you’ll still be faced with a rather large expense for the year, so here are a few things that you can do to ensure that it doesn’t cause future financial troubles:
- Budget! Before you do anything else, figure out how much you can really afford to pay per month toward the big event. That way you will know exactly what your total budget is before you begin buying.
- Cut Costs Be realistic with yourself about what you need to throw a great party, but also what you need in your day-to-day life. You will likely find that you can save a lot of money every month just by taking a close look at how you are spending your money.
- Move in Together If you haven’t taken the plunge yet, and it doesn’t go against your religious beliefs, consider moving in together before the wedding. It can drastically cut the amount of money being spent on living expenses each month – cutting in half things like mortgage, rent, utilities, cable and wi-fi expenses, etc.
- Think Creatively As mentioned above, DIY projects can actually save you a lot of money when it comes to paying for your big day, but creative thinking can also save you money in other ways. For instance, cleaning out your home(s) and any storage spaces could be a good way to make money, especially if you can sell some of those things that you don’t need any longer. Or, if you and a friend are both getting married in the same summer, consider working together to choose certain elements that could be used twice, without making the weddings too similar.