When we sit down with our couples during there consultation, one of the first things we ask them is, "How is wedding planning going?!" Hands down, the most popular answer is, "It is so much more expensive than we thought!" It got us thinking... despite all of the information available on WeddingWire, The Knot, Pinterest, or other wedding planning sites, it can be hard for couples to find out what really can save them for the overwhelming feeling or pressure to go over their budget. So we gathered the top 4 expensive wedding mistakes we see most couples make while planning their wedding.
1. Not Investing In Their Entertainment
It is safe to say that for 99.99% of weddings the reception is the longer, more expensive portion. Generally the reception includes the meal, rentals, flowers, alcohol, photography, videography, decor, and entertainment. Plus any additional expenses for making the reception your own (i.e. custom photo booth, dancing on the clouds special effect, etc.). If the average wedding in America costs $35,000, that is $7,000 for every hour of your wedding (based on a 5 hour time frame). Even if you decided on your budget being half of that at $17,500, you are looking at $3,500 per hour. That means if the entertainment you choose bores your guests and they leave two hours early you are looking at a minimum of a $7,000 loss. The reality is that aside from your entertainment making an enormous impact on how much fun your guests remember your wedding being, it is also will save you from an expensive wedding mistake.
2. Skipping The "Top 3" Conversation
When couples begin their wedding planning, they often can fall into the trap that every wedding service is equally important. However, that is not the case and different services will be important to different couples. For example, for the couples who are really interested in the look of their wedding, their top three services could be wedding planner, florist, and decor. For a couple who really wants their wedding to be a party, they might choose a unique venue, DJ/MC, and lighting. For couples who are all about their memories, they may choose photography, videography, and photo booth. It is important to sit down and discuss with your fiance what your most important services are, and then allocate your budget to those services, before you spend all of your budget on a service that is not as important to you. While every couple is different and each of their weddings unique, we always share a recent study on the "top 3" conversation. On a national survey, 5,000 couples were asked to pick their top three services, and across the board the top three were venue, food, and dress. When the same 5,000 couples were surveyed after their wedding, their answers changes to photography, videography, and entertainment.
3. Being Closed Minded
We always encourage couples to do their research, get some inspiration, and see what they want for their wedding. Where it can end up costing you is when you get married to a certain picture or inspiration before considering the logistics. For example, the flowers that are pictured may be drastically more in price depending on the season your wedding date is in. Or if you want a certain tent for your outdoor reception and the closest vendor who can replicate it is 3 hours away, then there is going to be a hefty travel fee attached to the rental. Our advice is to show the picture to your vendors, discuss the budget you have, and be open minded to their solutions to make it work. The vendors you chose should share the your wedding vision and will have your best interests in mind when helping you plan your wedding.
4. Buying Before Checking The Fine Print
Unless you are a wedding planner yourself or have been in the industry, your wedding is most likely the first time you are planning an event of this caliber. One of the biggest wedding mistake we see made is that couples fall head over heels for a venue and book it before asking the right questions and reading the fine print. If your venue does not include tables, chairs, linens, or a space to get ready then those are all things you and your fiance are going to have to pay for through a different vendor. Or maybe you do not like the options that they have available to you in house and you want to bring in an outside vendor to make your wedding vision complete. Make sure the venue does not have a buy out charge for bringing someone else in.
We hope that these insights help you and your fiance to avoid some of the most common wedding mistakes. For more tips or to schedule your free consultation, contact us today at 661.257.1725 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Let the J&M Experience begin!