In my first post about preparing your wedding budget, I talked about figuring out who is paying for what. This time I’ll talk about how both the couple and any contributing parents can avoid going into debt.
Going into debt for your wedding or honeymoon (or allowing those who love you to do so) is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. For starters, it means you’re spending too much money for a one-day event. Secondly, it sets a poor precedence for your marriage. It also means you’re borrowing from your future or the future of your family.
One of the first things you can do to avoid going into debt is setting up a budget. You can do one with papers and a folder if that’s your preference, or you can use one online. Here are a few websites with great budgeting tools:
Next, you (not mom and dad) need to prioritize the most important things about your wedding and honeymoon. Make a list of internal and external categories, then both of you order them by importance. Here are a couple short examples (10 or so is ideal), starting with internal priorities:
|Internal||He said||She said|
|Positive Honeymoon Experience||2||3|
|Memories of Ceremony||3||1|
|Pleasing Extended Family||4||5|
|Feelings of Romance||5||4|
And external priorities:
|External||He said||She said|
Combine the lists by adding the numbers and you’ll get a good idea for your collective budget priorities. Make a commitment to go as far as you can down the list, but no further. After all, you need to plan around the idea that marriage is not just a day. I’ll talk more about that in my next wedding post.
America’s Family Financial Expert (R)