You can always upgrade…I know it’s not what you wanted to hear but it’s the right answer. Generally, spend what you can afford should be the mantra for Wedding Costs. De Beers a long time ago said two times your monthly income. Well we believe a company that sells rings shouldn’t tell you how much you should pay for your ring. It depends on your financial situation.
If you already have a lot of erosive debt (ex: credit card debt), then you should spend closer to one month of your monthly income. Focus on paying off bad debt first (student loan debt is not bad debt), saving, and earning a stable income. Eventually once you’re in a better financial situation later on in life then you can upgrade if that’s still important to you and your significant other.
You don’t want to be pilling up bad debt early as that will have the largest negative impact on your long term wealth. If you cannot afford to pay for the ring outright then don’t buy it. Financial problems are one of leading causes of divorce. So it’s probably best to not start your marriage off by accumulating high interest credit card debt before you get married.
Take your time. Ask your family and your future in-laws family if they have old jewelry that you can have to reduce the cost of the ring. Maybe there’s an heirloom ring, rich with family history, that could be used again to carry on tradition. A ring like that can mean more to your spouse than a shiny expensive ring that puts stress on your financial situation.
At the end of the day it’s not the ring that makes your marriage, it’s what you put into your marriage on a day to day basis that will make you live a more fulfilling and happier life. Think about whether or not the ring represents your values and if you find something you really like, wait a couple of weeks before making the purchase. You’re about to spend the rest of your life with this person so be patient with big financial decisions.
For your wedding costs, be creative.
It’s about the experience. No one will remember the food, plates, silverware, flowers, table cloths, and decorations. Everyone will remember how it made them feel. So what do you want the most important people in your life to feel?
For most it’s about the ceremony and festivities after. My favorite wedding was in the middle of the mountains. We stayed in little cabins, ate a big bbq buffet and celebrated with fireworks and a big bonfire. Now obviously that isn’t everyone’s idea of a great wedding but it can mean that you don’t need to go to a fancy venue, serve fancy food, and serve the best alcohol.
If you cannot afford to pay for your outright you should find some ways to save money or do things differently. For some, that may be having just family come to the wedding and then you celebrate a different way at your own home or parents home. This is how some control Wedding Costs.
Do your own hair and makeup, Instead of flowers use pinwheels, make your own playlist and have a friend help, make it local, serve low/middle of the road alcohol for a couple hours and then turn it into a cash bar. Whatever it is, find ways to be creative instead of buying everything.
Remember, while this is an extremely important day, it’s just a day. Spending everything you’ve saved or taking on debt might stress the beginning part of your marriage and that’s no way to start a life long partnership.