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Q & A Wedding Planning & Budgets

Q & A: Wedding Planning & Budgets

Q & A Wedding Planning & BudgetsWith Valentine’s Day right around the corner—a prime time for new engagements and wedding planning—we thought we’d share a recent Q&A that was featured in Modern Luxury’s Houston Brides magazine. The questions were answered by our very own Dawn Rodriguez of PrimeWay Investment Resources. You can view the full spread in the digital version of the December issue here: Houston Brides. 

1. What do couples fight about most when it comes to money and the wedding? 

You want your big day, as well as the months leading up to it, to be a joyful time. The last thing you need is to fight with your significant other about finances. Couples often debate about where to allocate money for wedding expenses. The important thing is to talk about it, and make sure you’re on the same page. If he doesn’t want you to spend thousands on your dress because he’d rather allocate some of that money on shared expenses, then hear him out. He might have a good point. 

2. Is there a “reasonable” budget for your wedding? 

To put it simply, your wedding budget should be no more than what you can afford without going into debt! Though many people finance their wedding, I strongly advise against this. Debt with your new partner isn’t the best way to start your married life together. Since the planning for your wedding will begin at least 9-18 months before the actual day, you have time to start making your lists and covering expenses without taking on debt. This can accomplished the old fashioned way by taking into account your salary and current expenses, and then setting aside 20% every month until the wedding day. The longer the engagement, the more time you will have to save for costs associated with the big day. 

3. The Dress: Can I be savvy and stylish at the same time? 

Even if one can afford it, a savvy spender knows saving money is stylish and doesn’t mean you have to forgo the style in your dress. When searching for the perfect dress, consider pre-owned or returned dresses. Many times, they are deeply discounted and were never even worn due to wedding cancelations. A dress from a large retailer can be purchased for $500, while a designer one can run anywhere from $2,000, $4,000 and higher. All this can be cut in half going the pre-owned option. 
In addition to the cost of the dress itself, you also want to consider and budget for additional costs, such as taxes, alterations (you’ll likely need at least three fittings before the right dress is ready to be worn), shoes, jewelry, undergarments, hair accessories, and the cost of shipping. 

4. How can I set up the registry for gifts to accommodate the financial status of a variety of guests? 

Registering for a number of gifts well in advance of your wedding date is smart; it will give guests many options from which to choose and plenty of time to choose them. Pricing is very important, as well. Three price ranges always seem to work well. Fifty or less, $50-$100 and over $100 is a great price variance. Make sure you select items that will be applicable to your lifestyle and help you cut down on future expenses to begin your new life. 

5. Taking all wedding expenses into consideration, should I negotiate? 

Yes. Everything is up for negotiation. Even if you feel your negotiation skills are not up to par, you will be pleasantly surprised with your sense of accomplishment if you give it a try. You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain. If you ask and the answer is “no,” the vendor will still be more than happy to take your full-price dollars to book your event. But if you ask and they say “yes” to a discounted price, then those extra funds can be allocated to other areas for which you’ve already budgeted or couldn’t afford in the original budget. Don’t be shy. 

Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC.