MoneyWise Live | July 31, 2018

Wedding Bliss on a Budget

Show Notes

Would you believe that the average couple spends 14 months planning their wedding? That means if you want the traditional June wedding in 20-19— you’re already 3 months behind!

But no matter when you’ve scheduled your Big Day, you don’t want to go into debt just to say "I do."  On this edition of MoneyWise Live, how to start your marriage with minimal debt.

Here are some points to remember when planning a wedding:

  • Remember that emotions tend to run high when someone is planning a wedding.  It really is a special day.  Marriage is ordained by God and it's part of His original design for us.  And because we want it to be special, it's easy to overspend because we want it to be perfect. But the amount of money you spend on a wedding doesn't necessarily make it a great wedding.
  • A recent survey showed couples wish they'd spent less on the reception venue, flowers and decorations, the band and food. Knowing those areas trigger the most buyer’s remorse makes them a good place to start keeping costs down.
  • There are many ways to save on the venue. Just getting married on a Friday instead of Saturday could save you a few thousand dollars. You can also look for a venue that doesn’t require you to use their vendors.  That allows you to shop around for lower prices.
  • Here’s a great idea one couple had - they rented a large vacation home for a destination wedding. They had the ceremony, reception, and lodging all in one place. When the guests left, they even spent their honeymoon there. That saved them a bundle.  If you do this,  be sure you let the know owner know what you’re doing. 
  • Trimming the guest list is the quickest, if not the easiest way to keep costs down.  It’s really a savings multiplier. By keeping the occasion intimate, you save by having a smaller venue, fewer meals to serve and lower costs for flowers, centerpieces and other decorations.  You could simply have the reception at a restaurant instead of a traditional venue. 
  • Try to do as much of the planning yourselves. If you've got the budget for a big wedding with lots of moving parts, you may need to hire a wedding planner and that's just another expense.  Their knowledge and expertise can save you money, too, however.  If your budget is small, set the date far enough ahead so you can take your time and do most of the planning yourself. Then, hire an event coordinator just for the day so you don't have to worry about the details when you're getting ready to walk down the aisle.

Next, Rob and Steve tackle listener questions at 800-525-7000 and via email to on a variety of topics:

  • If you normally tithe on your income, how do you tithe on a lump sum gift?
  • If you're a 29 year old with two student loans totaling $40,000 (one of which has a variable rate that makes it difficult to pay off) should you consider a consolidation loan to pay the student loans off?  
  • If you and your husband have about $10,000 credit card debt with a card that charges 17%, would it be a good idea to take out a personal loan at a lower rate to pay the card off?
  • If it seems your mom has financial problems and seems to be tithing too much, what should you do?
  • Do the biblical financial principals for individuals regarding debt also apply to the church?

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