It's no secret that the cost of getting married has rocketed in the past couple of decades. With the average cost of weddings in the UK being around £21,000, according to a survey by You & Your Wedding in 2015, more couples than ever are looking for alternative ways to find the cash for their ceremony rather than resorting to emptying their savings account. If you're thinking about ways to pay for your wedding, you may want to consider taking out a personal loan.
How could a wedding loan benefit you?
Whether you're looking to take out a loan to pay for just some of the celebrations or want to cover the entire ceremony, one advantage is that your payments are fixed, allowing you to budget accordingly. You could also choose a loan with a term from one to ten years, depending on the loan amount, loan purpose and lender.
If you can afford to repay your loan within a shorter timeframe, you'll pay less interest overall. (A longer timeframe means a higher total interest bill.)
It's also possible with some lenders to take a payment holiday at the start of the loan agreement. You'll still pay interest during the payment holiday and the length of your loan will be extended, but it could give you a bit of a breather after the honeymoon.
Whether you're planning to take out a loan or not, it pays to be savvy when planning your dream day. The perfect wedding doesn't have to break the bank, and there are many ways you can enjoy a fairy tale ceremony without spending. Below is a handy list of tips to help you out.
Go second hand
When bought new, wedding essentials such as dresses, rings and decorations can be expensive. To cut some of the cost, you may want to take advantage of second hand bargains. Add a personal touch by wearing a family heirloom, or head to an antiques market or vintage store for chic one-offs. You never know – you might get lucky and come across a designer dress being sold at a fraction of its original price.
Cut everyday spending
Making small changes to the way you spend money each week and sacrificing some of your personal luxuries could really boost your wedding kitty. Start making tea or coffee at work rather than splashing out on café-bought drinks, for example, and try to avoid going on any shopping sprees that aren't related to your wedding.
The summer months are the most popular among couples getting married, and venues and entertainers are prone to bumping up their prices during these times. By hosting a winter wedding, you and your loved one could save money that can be spent on making your big day extra special (or put towards an exciting honeymoon). Look to hold the wedding during the week instead of on a weekend to save even more.
Rather than relying on professionals for details such as decor, photographs, catering and make-up, get creative and see where you can exercise your DIY skills. You could make your own table decorations, invitations and flower arrangements, ask a friend or family member to take photos for a much smaller fee than a wedding photographer, or even bake your own wedding cake. It's important to strike the right balance – make sure you don't try to take on too much.
Downsize the guest list
Your guests will account for a huge proportion of the wedding bill, so, if this is an option, cut costs by inviting fewer people. Smaller ceremonies are far more intimate, and you'll spend the day surrounded by your closest friends and family. It'll also mean that you get the chance to enjoy long conversations with all the guests, and not feel like you have to dash around meeting and greeting everyone there.
Stick to your budget
To ensure that you don't go too overboard with your wedding spending, have a budget in place to keep control of your outgoings and ensure peace of mind throughout the whole planning process. Figure out your priorities and decide which areas you don't mind cutting back on, if necessary. Settle on a maximum amount you want to spend and ensure you can afford it.