The wedding is a ceremony at which you and your future spouse make a lifetime commitment of love. Those who witness the ceremony pledge to support you both during the struggles and victories of your many wonderful years together. The average wedding costs more than $20,000 with some articles I researched saying as high as nearly $30,000. Poppycock, that’s what I say about that! That’s a lot of money for most families and I think it would be wiser to spend less and make progress towards your future togetherâ€¦ A wedding isn’t the day you are crowned king or queen. Try to balance the importance of the ceremony with the party to which you are looking forward.Who’s paying?- Some families can pay for all of your dreams, and it might be the bride or groom’s family. In some cases certain special elements of the wedding, such as the wedding dress or the honeymoon, are paid by grandparents or aunts or uncles. It is important to be clear about their budget and grateful for their kindness. Of course, if you are paying for everything, you can do what you’d like. Budget even less – On one site, Brilliant Wedding Pages, I read a very practical and helpful budget tip: cut your budget back so that unanticipated expenses will not crush you and cause your happy day to be stress-filled. Hidden expenses- what are some of the expenses you may not think of? Dress alterations, gift for your future spouse, stamps, favors, marriage licenses, and more add up. Recognize they exist and prepare. Suggested amount to save for that ‘rainy day’ is 5% of the budget, some suggested as high as 20%. Cheaper alternatives?- Put on your thinking cap and see if you can figure out creative ways to save, without losing your mind. You will be busier and busier as the wedding approaches. You need to balance out saving and additional tasks organized – or done – by you, with being relaxed enough and awake enough to enjoy the ceremony and the reception. Some tips: used gowns, unusual favors, picking a time of day or day of the week out of the norm, rings from estates, online or on lay-away. Use your very clever noggin and be realistic. Sometimes you realize that certain aspects of the wedding are crucial to you. Try to figure out where you can cut back but what is really important to you. Keep the REAL focus- Ultimately, this is a ceremony of your commitment and love with the people whom you most love. It’s not about the dress. If you faced a terrible tragedy you might be better able to put this day in perspective. It’s not about money or outdoing others. Keep the focus. Citations:Suggested percentages- Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com Check out our website that includes weekly streaming videosWWW.NorumbegaFinancial.com Vote Norumbega Financial for Bangor’s Best Financial Planning Firm at Market Surveys of America In compliance with requirements from FINRA, all e-mail sent via the WSFG domain will be subject to review and archiving by Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Email management, archiving & monitoring technology powered by Smarsh, Inc. Disclosure:Only securities and advisory services offered through Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Wall Street Financial Group, Inc., Norumbega Financial and all other entities listed herein are separate entities, independently owned and operated.