Did you know brides and grooms spend an average of $30,000 to tie the knot? There are many things to consider when planning your dream wedding. Setting a budget is the first step! Being able to stick to your wedding budget is essential for a smooth and stress-free wedding process. Consider the suggestions below to ensure you and your soon-to-be significant other are on the same page.

Set a Budget
You need to be honest and communicative with your fiancé and have a conversation with your families about who will be paying for what. According to a report from WeddingWire.com, the couple’s parents typically pay two-thirds of the total. After their contribution, figure out how much you can afford, not how much you wantto spend. Next, consider the type of venue, look, style, and the number of guests you can allow for the set budget. And no matter what, do not go over what you initially agreed upon. Unseen expenses are sure to pop up when you least expect it. Make sure you allocate 5% of your budget as backup cash for some hidden fees you didn’t see in the initial contract. Consider researching low-interest personal loans if your budget is already tight.

How to Pay for the Wedding
There are several money-saving ideas you can take advantage of without cutting corners. Consider an off-season date. The peak of wedding season begins in late spring and continues through early fall, so planning a date outside these months will save you a significant amount. Don’t forget hotels and resorts also have off-seasons if you’re planning a destination wedding or honeymoon. For the little details, get crafty and make your own invites, place cards, welcome bags, etc. It will help minimize small costs that add up. Don’t stress over napkin choices and intricate decor.

The Non-negotiables
Create a list of your non-negotiables that you can’t imagine your wedding without. Whether it’s the quality of food, an open bar, type of flowers, no-kids-rule at the reception, splurging on a great photographer, etc. Setting your priorities together will make it easier to determine where you’ll use your wedding funds.