How much is right?

When thinking of your budget as a whole, one benchmark to keep in mind is that no more than 50% of your budget should go towards your venue, food and beverage, and the basics it takes to host a wedding and reception there. Save the other half of the budget for the details – the dress, flowers, photography and more.

Save when you can!

Why not start saving 15% of your income every month as soon as you get engaged - the longer you're engaged and save, the more you can put towards your budget or towards that new nest if someone else is footing the bill.

Who's paying for what?

Speak with each side of the family about who may or may not be contributing to your wedding (along with your own dough, too!). Families will most likely be happy and willing to help in any way they can even if it isn't with the budget but with time.

Is it necessary to tip everyone?

Don't forget to tip! Did you know it's customary to give a gratuity to your wedding vendors? Each service warrants a different amount, and of course, give what you feel is appropriate, but for wedding planners, a $500 gratuity can be much appreciated, as is a nice and personal gift. Hair and makeup? 15% to 25% of the bill. Even the banquet captain and delivery staff members should be accounted for, so make sure to set aside envelopes before the big day.

What about photography?

Over spend on photography! Save about 15% of your wedding budget for a fabulous photographer. Quality is key; you can always order your album for your first anniversary and splurge on the artist upfront.