Your wedding is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your life, but what happens when the caterer closes, the head count is wrong and the band is a no-show? More than one couple has experienced these types of wedding disasters.
Make sure that your wedding day is filled with blissful memories by taking a few steps to protect yourself from the financial and emotional impact of nuptial dilemmas and put your mind at ease.
• Solidify a budget. The average wedding costs a whopping $28,427, according to TheKnot.com, which means that couples are spending big bucks to say “I do.” Whether you’re able to spend $5,000 or more than $50,000, it’s important to create a realistic budget and stick with it throughout the wedding-planning process.
A good way to stay within budget is to set priorities. Do you care more about the food and not so much about the flowers? Allot more funds for catering and keep the bouquet modest. Create a spreadsheet and involve your partner so that you are on the same page. No one wants to be mid-wedding planning and realize that they can’t afford what they promised guests – or worse, have a huge bill at the end that risk delays to other goals, such as buying a home.
• Purchase wedding insurance. Imagine that it’s two weeks before the wedding and you just discovered that the reception hall suddenly closed, the tailor lost your dress or the photographer was in a car accident and can’t attend the ceremony. There’s always an element of the unknown, and when so much money and emotion are involved in an event like a wedding, it’s crucial to get wedding insurance.
“Wedding cancellation insurance can help cover losses for deposits sent to businesses that have unexpectedly closed, replacement of damaged wedding dresses and attire, and restaging of photos if a photographer is a no-show,” said Steve Lauro, vice president of Aon’s WedSafe wedding insurance program. “It may even cover up to the full cost of your wedding if your event is postponed due to unforeseen circumstances, such as extreme weather or a venue shutting its doors.”
Event Liability insurance, required by many venues, is another type of coverage that may protect your wedding, Lauro added.
• Investigate venues and vendors. National average wedding costs include $2,379 for a photographer, $1,997 for a florist, $12,905 for a reception venue and $63 per guest for catering. When investing so much money in a wedding, make sure that the businesses you select are the best of the best. Spend time researching different venues and vendors before signing on the dotted line.
When researching, make sure that each business carries liability insurance. Ask for references and spend time emailing and making calls. Check out every business on BBB.org and read online reviews.
• Stay organized and confirm details one month out. Many couples plan a wedding a year or more out, so it’s important a month prior to confirm all the details to ensure a smooth and beautiful wedding day. Call vendors and event sites to verify times and services.
You’ll receive lots of paperwork during the wedding-planning process. Keep copies of all contracts in a specified folder. Record how much was put down on deposits and when additional amounts are due so that you don’t miss a payment.