Have a Dream Wedding Not a Budget Nightmare

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Have a Dream Wedding Not a Budget Nightmare
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I recently picked my mouth up from the floor after finding a survey from the Knot.com which found the average cost of weddings is nearing $30,000. I had to bring in wedding planner extraordinaire, Kim Moss, to help me make sense of those numbers.

It’s still blowing my mind.

If we drill down further, the top 5 most expensive places to marry are:

  • Manhattan – a cool $86,000
  • Long Island – $57,000
  • North/Central New Jersey – $51,000
  • Chicago – $48,000 (They don’t call it the second city for nothing.)
  • NYC Suburbs – $47,000


Are parents of the bride still expected to foot the bill? I can only imagine what costs will be like when my 1 year old decided she’s in love.

Dream Wedding

As the conversation around wedding costs began to swirl, a little birdy (or really Michelle from ShopMyClosetProject.com) hipped me to one fab challenge that a newly engaged, New York city couple have created for themselves.

Sandy Smith and her betrothed are planning a wedding for $5000 and not a penny more.

Sandy’s been blogging with Yes I Am Cheap since 2005 and she covers her journey (still in progress) out of $120,000 in debt. In the midst of her debt dumping journey, she’s jumping the broom and working very hard to cap the cost so her dream wedding doesn’t become a budget nightmare.

The major costs associated with weddings are generally:

  • The reception venue and meal
  • The guest list
  • The wedding dress
  • The pre and post wedding related activities

Sandy has smartly addressed all of these areas as wedding planning progresses and she’s sharing her approach. We also had a great conversation about factors that impact every couple beyond the wedding day. While the wedding is nice (and I loved mine), couples should definitely focus just as much energy – if not more – on creating a firm relationship foundation. 

Since most marriage dissolve over problems related to money,  5 Budget Areas to Review Before Saying I Do offers ideas on how to address the premarital financial conversation. In the meantime, enjoy our last podcast for 2014 as Sandy shares how she’s ensuring her fabulous wedding doesn’t turn into a budget nightmare.

We’re all for fabulous. Go in on your big day. Just do it within your means to pay. Set a realistic budget and consider all wedding related events – everything has a price tag. Get creative and don’t take wedding debt into your first years of marriage. It’s an unnecessary added stress.

If you’re in the market for frugal wedding ideas, please enjoy these great stories.

Do you have any tips for keeping wedding costs in check? 

Dream Wedding

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This post parties with brokeGIRLrich on Financially Savvy Saturdays

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