Congratulations, you are engaged! Now What? Where do you start? Who pays for what? How do we get started planning our big day? These are just a few of the questions that many couples tell me that begin to float around in their heads once they are engaged.
Don't let the confusion of how everything seems to fall together overwhelm you. Enjoy every moment of your engagement. Start by doing these 3 important steps:
Set a Budget
You have to start by setting a realistic budget for what you are willing to spend on your wedding day. It is a good idea to sit down with your fiance and talk about what each of you wants for your big day. Don't assume that the other will not want to discuss their desires, because after helping many couples get from "Yes" to "I do", I can tell you that each partner has definite wants and desires for this day.
Determine who is going to pay for what. Do you have family that is willing to help you pay for different items in the budget?
Knowing all of these factors will help you in determining exactly what type of wedding you are going to be able to afford. This will help you determine how many guests you can have, what type of venue you can afford, what type of menu to have, how many florals fit within your budget, what type of photography package you can choose, so many choices are based on your budget.
2. Open a Joint Wedding Checking Account
Once you have determined your budget, the way to keep that budget intact is to open a joint checking account that will be used for all things wedding.
You will be able to track your wedding spending more efficiently and also see where you are spending more or less in different areas of your planned budget.
3. Start Your Search for the Perfect Venue
Once you are armed with your financial road map to the big day, begin your search for the perfect venue. The venue should be the top priority in your planning process.
Start inquiring about venue packages and pricing. This will help you determine if you are able to tour a certain venue and if it fits within the budget you have been able to establish.
Remember, design and decor should not happen until you have a venue. Things that work great in one venue may not work well in another.
The budget is one of the biggest items on your to-do list after you are engaged. Make sure that you both set realistic goals and numbers when it comes to the budget. Don't start the process stressed, make it something that is easily attainable. Have the conversations with those that can possibly help with any of the costs so that you know that going into the planning stages. Take a look at each line and make a determination what items about the big day mean the most to each of you. This analysis may help you eliminate things that you don't want, allowing you more money for the things that you do want.
Wedding planning should be an exciting and wonderful time. Download your free budget checklist today from Blessed Magnolia here. Enjoy the process and love your engagement time.