May 16, 2012 at 3:37 pm #26423
Holy jesus, I feel like I lucked out on my wedding. We spent the $30 or whatever to get our marriage license, $40 to the guy who officiated, and maybe $300 for rings. Oh and whatever the hotel room was for the night. And that was it.
Sometimes I think I’d like to have a “legit” wedding, but I’m just not that kind of girl. And in my family, it’s somewhat of a bad omen. Big, fancy, traditional wedding = divorce; get married privately, almost no one present = together for life. So I like to think of ours as a good thingMay 16, 2012 at 4:02 pm #26439
If you find a place that will let you stock your own bar, that’s a great money saving option, too. That way, you have whatever booze you want, you pay retail for it (not restaurant markup), and you get to keep all the leftovers!May 16, 2012 at 4:31 pm #26452
I love the idea of starting to save up early. I mean, our wedding was dirt cheap as far as weddings go (about $6000) but we only invited 50 people and I worked in the wedding industry at the time, so I got steep discounts on almost everything. We still wound up having to cut a lot of corners so that we could have both a wedding and a honeymoon.
I would start a separate savings account with both your names on it with an agreement that you won’t touch it until you start wedding planning. Also, if he’s worried what will happen to the money should you break up, you may want to consider a contract that stipulates that the money will be divided up back between you. He may not worry about it, but I know I panic about the strangest things (rather than panicking about getting married, I’d panic about the bank account because I know I’m supposed to be too excited about getting married to panic about it)May 16, 2012 at 4:59 pm #26456
@ChemE – In our family, it seems to be the opposite. For the most part (with a few exceptions), the bigger traditional weddings = long, happy marriage and the small private ones seem to end in divorce quicker.
And I didn’t pay anything for the officiant except a bottle of liquor (after the ceremony of course). He was a family friend who was also an ordained minister and did it for free.
And I’m all about unsolicited advice, so one thing I’d like to tell people getting married or thinking about it or preparing to think about it is this – if you have the option, keep the ceremony light. We had a lot of fun with ours – upbeat readings (one was a Dr. Suess poem and the other was about laughter and was really funny) and we wrote our own vows that brought a lot of humor into it (part of my husband’s was “job or no job” since he was laid off 2 days before our wedding). People still talk about how much fun our ceremony was, which is not a response I usually hear about wedding ceremonies.May 18, 2012 at 9:13 am #26750
A wedding savings account sounds like a great idea. Are you already engaged with a set wedding date? Because it sounds like you’re planning for something that is years in the future (good for you).
If there is no date set, I’d suggest separate accounts just for safety’s sake. My husband and I saved separately until right before the wedding, when we combined the accounts and put all monetary gifts into my account, from which we withdrew all the funds for our wedding. Our circumstance was a bit different, since I/we looked at the savings account as a combined “wedding/home down payment” savings, not just a wedding savings. But keeping the accounts separate can be a good idea, especially if it is important to you that it be earmarked just for your wedding. Something that is contributed to jointly can become an appealing source for spending on other things, a point of contention if one person is contributing more than the other, or in the case of a breakup (which I’m in no way suggesting would actually happen) a way you could lose a lot of money that you worked hard for.May 18, 2012 at 10:39 am #26772
I guess with my fiance and I both being in our thirties, we really didn’t have to save much for the wedding. I’m not sure how you can wait though. I have 5.5 months to go and CAN’T WAIT to marry him!May 18, 2012 at 11:10 am #26777
I would follow demoiselle’s advice. It sounds like you’re not engaged yet. Is this normal, guys? To start saving for a wedding when you aren’t engaged yet? I would think that would kind of bug the guy out a little.
Also, these costs are great reminders of why I don’t want a wedding. Sorry to be debbie downer.May 18, 2012 at 12:11 pm #26789
That was part if the reason I asked- because we aren’t engaged yet, officially I guess. We both know that marriage is in our future and we have talked pretty extensively on it, so I don’t think it will creep out my boyfriend in particular (but I could totally see that happening in other situations)May 18, 2012 at 12:18 pm #26791
LBH, I think it mainly depends upon the guy. I think starting a savings account now is a fantastic idea, but then again, I’m pretty biased. I did this because my husband and I both knew on the first date we were going to get married (though, it was a few weeks before we verbalized it). We watched several close friends struggle with wedding debt for years and we looked at each other and decided that would not be us. So, we started saving together after we’d been dating for 4 months. I think it might have actually been his idea, now that I think about it, so it definitely did not creep him out. So yeah, it’s a fabulous idea if a big wedding is on your list of experiences you’d like to have. People thought we were crazy and ridiculous when we started it, but by the time our wedding rolled around, those same people thought we were genius. Also, if it’s something you want to do, and you’re not engaged yet and think it might freak him out (or even if you’re still single), I STILL think it’s a great idea. Just don’t verbalize to them that you’re saving for that express purpose. Once you’re engaged and in planning mode, they’ll probably be grateful then, but if you’re guy is the type to freak out over something like that, then don’t say anything. I don’t think it’s creepy at all – it’s pretty fiscally responsible.May 27, 2012 at 12:08 pm #27700
If you have 3-4 years to go until the hypothetical wedding and no ring, you might come off as pressuring him if you make it a strictly wedding fund. I would probably approach it as some kind of long-term goals fund- wedding, house down payment, etc. I would also keep two separate accounts for it, or keep track of who puts in what. A lot can happen in 4 years, and I think there’s a danger in acting married (i.e., joint finances) before you actually are married, if you’re planning to get married. If you wanted to start saving for your own wedding to whomever that may be, and if it’s your boyfriend then how lucky for him, that’s one thing.
If you never plan to marry that’s another thing and you’re free to write your own rules, but sounds like that’s not the case here.May 29, 2012 at 10:30 am #27866
We are contributing $10,000.00 to our wedding plus the cost of the honeymoon. We also set up a joint account for this purpose, and had a certain amount of money each week drawn from our checks and automatically deposited into the account, and then added extra money when we can, and actually have a little more than we planned to have so have ended up adding a videographer to the wedding, because we hear from lots of people that if you have kids it is a great thing to watch with them. I will say when you set up the account read over everything! Make sure you know what your monthly minimum balance has to be, if there are any fees for the amount of withdrawals in a month, and also make sure you have a joint checking account attached to it to transfer money over when you need to use it, or just go with the joint checking account.May 29, 2012 at 10:33 am #27867
Oh I also agree with watersedge, I would not start a wedding fun until you know there is going to be a wedding. You can do a joint account for life events, but just becareful that if something does happen he might empty it on you, because I’ve actaully seen it a couple of times on the letters here, and heard of it a couple of times with friends.May 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm #27977
I’m all for saving and I had a BF who it made sense to do that with. HOWEVER:
Addie Pray should put in her 2 cents here, but DO NOT DO a joint account if you guys are putting in different amounts of money, unless you really do want to split it evenly if you break up. I don’t remember any details about this from studying for the bar, but there is a chance that once the money has been pooled, it’s joint property and it doesn’t have to be pro rated when you take it out. So just make TWO accounts and look at the total as your “joint” account.
Addie?May 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm #27978
ELOPE!May 30, 2012 at 9:12 am #28072
I would say its a lot smarter to put that money into your own savings account- don’t share it with your boyfriend. A lot can happen in three years. You know how people say you never really know someone until you divorce them? Those people trusted their partners and had good enough relationships to get married, sometimes be married for years, and in the end they get screwed over. “Kind happy boyfriend of today” is not the same guy as “Uncaring and callous or resentful and hurt ex-boyfriend of tomorrow” if someones feelings change.
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