Hodsock Priory’s Guide To Allocating Your Wedding Budget Efficiently
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – allocating your wedding budget is the least exciting aspect of planning, but it should definitely be at the top of your to-do-list. The sooner you tackle it, the less stressed you’ll be and the smoother your planning process will run! Every couple is different and so is every budget; there’s no ‘one size fits all’, but our guide will give you a rough idea of where to start and how you might like to allocate your funds. Whether you’re choosing to save or splurge on your celebration, there are a number of details to consider including what’s important to both of you as a couple. Without a set budget in place, finances can easily get out of hand and planning can quickly spiral out of control.
The first thing to do is decide roughly how much you’d like to spend in total on your wedding, even if this is a rough estimate or ‘no higher than…’ number. Once you know how much you have to work with, you can start allocating your wedding budget. Rock My Wedding have a handy guide as an example, but remember there may be some elements you choose to forgo. Prioritising what is really important to you as a couple will help you identify where you could/should spend more, and where you can save. Not all couples choose to spend lots on favours or wedding photo albums, for example.
Allocate & Prioritise
This brings us onto our next stage of allocating your wedding budget. Take time to sit down and work out together what is important to you. Is there an area of the wedding you’d like to prioritise? Perhaps you want to spend more on the music but you’re not too fussed about décor? Compromising is key, so discuss it in detail before booking anything so you know where and how much you want to allocate.
Creating A Spreadsheet For Allocating Your Wedding Budget
We highly recommend getting comfortable with Microsoft Excel or one of its counterparts, as a spreadsheet can be your best friend when allocating your wedding budget! It’s the simplest way to keep aunty information regarding your wedding budget in one place, and it can be easily edited and sorted for accessibility. You can even calculate costs and maintain a running total of your budget to ensure you’re keeping organised and stress-free. The internet can provide you with templates for wedding budget spreadsheets with a quick Google!
If friends or family have previously offered to contribute towards your wedding, work this into your budget. Discuss it with your loved ones and make sure everything is clear to avoid any misunderstandings. They will also appreciate knowing exactly what the money is going towards, especially when they see it on the wedding day itself. Consider inviting them to contribute specifically towards the flowers, for example, and involve them in some of the behind the scenes planning for this aspect.
Now you’ve worked out your total budget and got an idea of how to break it down, it’s time to start saving. Your spreadsheet comes in handy here too, as you can calculate how much you can save each month by using it as a mini financial organiser!
Save the Date
It may sound obvious, but setting the date is hugely important when it comes to allocating your wedding budget. If you want to choose a purse-friendly time of year to tie the knot, consider the off season and perhaps opt for an autumn or winter wedding. Lots of wedding professionals and venues offer discounts and savings during the off-peak season. Setting a date will also give you a guide on how much you need to save and when.
Speak To Suppliers
Before you sign any contracts with suppliers, chat to various vendors and gather quotes so that you can compare prices and work out who you want to be a part of your special day. Make sure you ask whether the quotes include VAT, and if there will be any unexpected or extra costs further down the line. Remember, the items you’ve identified as the most important to you are where you’ll want to put most of your budget. It’s always worth spending a little more on the right supplier!
If you speak to any couple, the majority will say that they ended up spending more than they budgeted for and this is where a contingency fund is key. It’s always sensible to have some contingency money set aside for unexpected budget creep.
Hodsock Priory’s Top Wedding Budget Tip
“Don’t feel like you need to follow every tradition if it’s going to compromise your wedding budget – you don’t have to stick to every rule when it comes to planning your special day. If you don’t have the budget for wedding favours, why not double up with your escort cards instead? That way, your guests are directed to their seats in style and they’ve got something special to take home.”
Images in this blog from Morgan & Buddy’s wedding, captured by LHT Photography.