Should You Push through with the Wedding If You’re Broke?
You proposed. She said yes. Everything is going according to plan — just as long as you can afford it.
You’re making a mistake many young couples make, which is do first, plan later. So you propose first, figuring that life will sort itself out as you and your fiancé stride along hand-in-hand into the sunset.
But it isn’t a mistake yet, until you learn one immutable fact of life — women have been dreaming of their wedding since they were small children.
Men today are somewhat aware of the costs it takes to have a wedding, yet time and time again, they underestimate its actual toll on their finances and overestimate its real world value.
The Epidemic of Overspending in Weddings
How much does it cost to have your typical, run-of-the-mill wedding these days? Make a call to your wedding organizer and they’ll run you down a list of wedding essentials to spend on, such as:
- The dress
- Flowers and decor
- Reception venue and catering
- Hair and makeup
- Hotel rooms
The average wedding in the United States costs around $30,000. Some of these costs can skyrocket depending on the number of guests and your desired lavishness. Each of the essentials listed is its own industry. And as impractical, bloated, and unnecessary as some of them may sound, it’s hard to say no when there’s so much social pressure on you.
It has been reported that in places in Europe, the United States, or Latin America, around 30% of couples go into debt to finance their weddings, with some countries reaching as high as 47%.
It truly is a sad thing that couples are forced to saddle themselves with heavy debt to begin their new life together. To the everyday pragmatic, it sounds totally absurd.
Tackle Finances as You Begin Married Life
Do you find yourself complaining about how hard it is to afford a family these days, let alone finance a wedding?
Once you find the person you want to spend the rest of your life with, you’ll want to start off on the right foot. Money will be an issue to face whether you have a little or a lot.
The solution is to sit down with your fiancé and have a long and deep conversation about money. Ask yourself the following questions:
1. Will you regret having an expensive wedding 5 or 10 years from now?
2. How much are you making and can you sustain your desired lifestyle on your income?
3. What are your plans to better your financial situation and are they realistic?
4. What sacrifices do you have to make to finance your wedding, future children, a mortgage, etc.?
Once you make financial planning a habit, you’ll realize how much unnecessary spending you have been making. You’ll develop an insight into what is truly valuable to you, both individually and as a couple.
What Do You Do When You are Broke?
You might come to the realization that a wedding doesn’t have to cost much while being just as memorable as those that cost tens of thousands of dollars.
Don’t give into social pressure. At the end of the day, you’re not getting married because your aunt says so. You’re beginning a new life together, and that’s what matters.
It costs anywhere between $25 to $100 to get married at your local courthouse. You’ll probably shell out a few hundred dollars for a dinner celebration at home or at a family-friendly restaurant.
If you need more ideas, there are hundreds of stories online of couples spending pocket change to have their weddings at no sacrifice to the joy, sanctity, and meaningfulness of the event.
You can always have a beautiful wedding. You can choose to spend a lot of money, or very little. It won’t matter in the long run. What will matter is that you’ll live on with peace of mind and a full heart.