Pauline’s Points: Budget

Be realistic with your vision when creating a budget! In this edition of Pauline’s Points, we are delving into the most important part of your event; Budget.

As they say, money makes the world go round. One would argue that on a wedding day, love makes the world go round. As long as a strong balanced budget has been prepared, and followed, then on the big day, it will be all love.

1. Here is basic list of principal elements that you will want to consider; as every wedding is individual, yours may need other additional considerations.

? Invitations and Signage
? Officiant and Ceremony site
? Venue
? Wedding Attire
? Transportation
? Flowers
? Photography/Videography
? Wedding Planner
? Food and Beverage
? Wedding Cake
? Music
? Favors
? Lighting
? Decor
? Rentals/Linens
? Honeymoon

2. No time like the present to start the family off on a healthy communication about finances. All those who are participating in the expenditures, finance, family, generous friends (hey some of us have those) should feel comfortable talking about who will be responsible for what part of the costs of the celebration. A ballpark figure must be established or the whole process will be more trying that it needs to be.

2. Take the time to discuss with your fianc? and if your family are going to help with the expenses, as to who will be responsible for what. Come up with a ballpark figure that everyone feels comfortable spending for your celebration.

3 For most, this is the most expensive party they have ever thrown. Many people have no idea of what it will cost to create their dream wedding. Try to be realistic about what you dollars will bring you.

4. Be realistic with your vision for your wedding day that it matches your budget.

5. Your highest cost items are generally venue, food, beverages and equipment rentals.

6. To get more bang out of your dollar amounts, consider having the ceremony and reception at the same location as this will be more cost effective.

7. Choosing a venue such as a hotel or country club can also help the budget as they usually have linen, flatware, glasses, chairs, tables, and usually staff built in to the cost of the venue.

8. When booking a venue that is a blank canvas remember that you have to pay for everything to be brought in. These costs can be as much as 45% higher than choosing a venue with all equipment mentioned above.

9. Really determine what elements of a celebration are important to you. It is so much better to do five things really well than 10 things poorly. You may want to indulge your guest on a more elaborate culinary experience, and entertainment or photography may not be as important to you. Choosing an open bar over elaborate decorations may suit your style. Having this conversation early in the process will also save you time and money.

10. Your guest list can make or break the budget when it comes to the cost of food and beverage, rentals and floral costs for centerpieces. The more guests and the more tables, the higher this cost goes. Most other items will remain nearly the same whether you have 50 or 200 guests i.e. entertainment, dance floor?.

11. Work closely with your event professionals, as they are experts and quite often can find creative solutions that you never considered to bring prices more in line with your budget. Giving your professional team a ballpark budget to start makes their life easier, and more likely to give you added value. Making them play the guessing game eats into their time, and can be frustrating.

The budget process in many ways is a quick view into how your future as a couple and budgeting finances will run. Keep the communication open, and know there will have to be compromises. Remember this is a celebration of the love you all have more than anything!


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