7 Things Every Bride Needs to Know Before the Wedding

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7 Things Every Bride Needs to Know Before the Wedding

As a wedding filmmaker with more than 21 years under my belt, I’ve seen lots of things over the years that brides miss out on when planning their wedding. Well today, I’d like to share with you 7 things that every bride needs to know before her wedding so she can help make it a smooth, enjoyable process!

#1. Staying within the Budget is Key

How Couples Pay for the Wedding 2019

Most younger couples today simply can’t afford the wedding of their dreams, I mean let’s face it with school loans, living expenses, credit cards, car loans and mortgages, unless your independently wealthy, most couples haven’t been saving for a wedding.

In 2019, a majority of couples that get married, roughly 42% will ask their parents for some form of help, 19% will take out a wedding loan, 26% will use credit cards and the remaining couples will tend to live off one salary and use the other for the wedding.

Regardless, it's important for couples to remember that they'll have to be open to compromising on what they want as well as setting a realistic wedding budget.

Sometimes that means buying a used wedding dress, maybe getting a ceremony video instead of a more expensive feature film and settling on flowers and linens that are cheaper for example, but sticking to the wedding budget is by far the best asset you have when it comes to keeping your expenses in check.

My advice is to use my wedding budget tool in order to see what you can afford in each category and try to stick with it.

Another trick is to adjust categories in order to get the things that you want for the wedding. For example, instead of spending $1,200 on a wedding dress, buy one for $500 and use the rest for a wedding film. Now your money is working twice as hard for you and that’s smart thinking!

#2. The Day WILL Fly by VERY Fast

Listen, with more than 500 weddings in my career, one thing I hear often after the fact from couples it that their wedding went by SO fast!

And it’s true to a point, you and your spouse will be pulled in various directions from the moment you get to the venue to get ready, from wedding photographers wanting you so pose for images, us video pros wanting you to read your letters on camera, to the wedding planner directing you where to go and what to do, oh and you can’t forget meeting with all the friends and family that come to the wedding too, it’s a fast paced and very tiring experience!

The other thing to simply know is that there is no such thing as the perfect wedding, something will always go wrong!

It could be as simple as you are running late because of your hair or makeup or whatever the case, maybe the flower girl dumps all the flowers and starts crying, maybe it rains on your wedding day and you don’t have a backup plan.

Listen, I’ve NEVER been to a wedding where every single thing is perfect so my advice is to just roll with the punches and laugh off the silly little things that might happen, hey life happens so just enjoy the day if there are little blunders here and there along the way!

#3. Yes, you Really NEED to Hire a Videographer

And that brings me to my other point, the wedding video. The wedding day goes by so fast, while images are nice, you can’t relive the day and relive what’s said or the emotions and words spoken with an image.  According to Wedding Wire, nearly 97% of couples that skipped a video all together at their first anniversary truly regret not having spent the money on one. By year two, that number increase to 99.2%.

Regret Skipping Wedding Video

In 2010, roughly 24% of couples got a wedding video, today that number is closer to 49%. That really must do more with technology coming down in price some (trust me, professional gear is still VERY expensive) and today’s couple is used to video on smartphones, streaming and all sorts of devices. It’s just more, well, commonplace in todays world.

While feature films are very popular, they’re really meant more for social media than anything else, what’s really important is the ceremony and reception video. You can find all types of video, films and cinema; however those are mostly buzz words as no one uses film or cinema gear to capture your day, it’s all digital video.

My advice, plan on spending about 10-12% of your budget on a wedding video, about the same as a wedding photographer.

#4. Give Yourself LOTS of Time to Prepare

The last thing you want to be doing the morning/afternoon of your wedding is rushing around like a crazy person (and trust me, it will most likely happen regardless).

Do yourself a favor and give yourself plenty of time/padding between your hair/makeup appointments, photos, and ceremony start time to allow for anything that might come up. Print out schedules for the wedding party (and your groom) as well as family so everybody knows where they have to be and when. Also, give yourself time in the morning to just be by yourself before the madness begins.

Take an extra-long shower or bath and take some time to pamper yourself mentally/physically before it all starts.

You’ll thank yourself later!

#5. Get Lots of Rest

About a week before the wedding, make sure that you go to bed early. Try to relax as much as you can and get good sleep during the night, especially if you’re use to being up late at night anyway.

Having your bachelorette party a week or two before the wedding is ideal because you’re going to be focused on getting those small details down each night before bed anyway. If you like to drink wine or craft beer in the evening for example, limit yourself the week before the wedding too, at the rehearsal dinner, curtail your habits so you feel rested, refreshed and ready for your wedding day!

Most likely, you’ll be nervous thinking about the wedding during the week before everything so find things to help ease your mind before bed, like reading a book or watching something mindless and humorous on TV.

#6. Walk SLOWLY Down the Aisle

You’ll be nervous with butterflies in your stomach, but just know that it’s not a mad dash to the ceremony or a 5k walk either.

Take your time walking down the aisle, the wedding photographer will want to get lots of images of you walking down the aisle as well we the wedding videographer (me), plus everyone will want to see you in your dress smiling and soaking in all that beauty that has just come into the room, you!

Don’t forget to smile and just watch your future spouse when you see them, trust me, they’ll have an amazing look on their face when they see you coming down the aisle too!

#7. Practice Bustling the Dress

Having your Maid of Honor (or whoever will be bustling your dress) practice bustling your dress before your big day will save time. If possible, have her accompany you to your last fitting so your seamstress can show her how to do it.

#8 BONUS: Cold, Bottled Water

Most times than none, when a couple is married, they are going through the wedding pictures with family, they are hot, sweaty and thirsty.  One thing that I always do when I meet back up with the couple for video clips after the ceremony is, I try to bring them a bottle of water or some ice water.

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Think about it for a second. You’re going to be wearing this white gown that is incredibly heavy, out in the heat of the day with the sun coming down and tons of friends, family and wedding party all around you for an hour. The one thing that will be on your mind is that your thirsty.

I see it all the time on brides faces at sweat is building up so having a bottle of water that someone can bring, perhaps a napkin or two is worth the world at that moment in time. Just an bonus thing to think about because most couples don’t realize that they’ll be hot all dressed up taking pictures and video clips in the process.

Well, there you have it my 7 best tips for brides that the should think about that often get overlooked. I hope that this has been helpful for you and I encourage you to come back to the blog on a regular basis where I provide more great tips, money saving tricks and expert wedding advice from me to you!

Cheers~

Joshua

Wedding Film Professional


Why Couples Are Choosing Wedding Video over Wedding Photography

Why Couples Are Choosing Wedding Video over Wedding Photography

Hi friends, thanks again for checking back into the blog here. It seems that every couple of years there are new wedding trends in the marketplace that couples will sometimes try, usually it’s a new dance or some sort of wedding dress trends that more times than none are just that, a trend stitched in time and nothing more comes from it. We tend to see trends come and go all the time, such as what hot in youth clothing, music and popular hair styles.

Things come and go however one thing that I’ve noticed in the last couple of years is that couples are either choosing only to have a video/film company at the wedding or they will book their videographer/filmmaker long before they get a wedding photographer.

At first, I thought this was perhaps a trend among millennial’s but as I’ve seen in more recent years, even wedding photographers are trying to dabble in wedding video production for a very short term, most realize it’s much harder work than they thought and are then going back to all photography.  

But no matter, today, I want to chat a little bit about why couples are choosing video more so than photography.

Social Media

Perhaps the biggest factor today is social media. In 2019, we see that more and more videos are popping up in our favorite social media feeds and couples are becoming more accustom to that instead of images.

And because it’s becoming more commonplace to show a video clip instead of an image, couples getting married today almost expect wedding films to be apart of the big day.  

Companies like Facebook have even stated that if you want to get more likes in 2019, posting a video will have a much better engagement than an image and millennial’s love getting those likes.

One of the things that millennial’s are seeking are non-traditional rituals compared to gen-x couples and video is an example of that. Video is much more engaging than images and wedding photographers know this, thus why some are dabbling into both formats within the wedding business.

The Obvious

Wedding Media Importance

Couples Demand for Wedding Media (Virginia)

What I mean by this is that most of us video professionals know that we have a three-fold advantage over images. We create video that you can see, hear and re-live through your own memories.

Over time we naturally tend to forget things that happen, like what you did on your last birthday for example. We are so consumed with lives through technology, paying bills, keeping up with the daily motion of life that we start to forget things as time goes onward.

Wedding video plays a great part in being able to remember what was said, remembering who was at the wedding and how they acted and see the day from the eyes of the camera. Us video professionals already know this, and many times will talk about these key points to couples getting married.

Non-Traditional Weddings

Couples today are also seeking more non-traditional traditions at weddings too. I’ve seen many couples choose cupcakes rather than a cake, a colored wedding dress rather than white, skipping the traditional wedding reception things like garter and bouquet tosses and the like. In the 2019 season, I had two of my weddings where there was no wedding photographer, just me.

In my 21 years of doing weddings, that’s never happened to me before. The couples simply skipped a wedding photographer for a wedding film instead.

So why is that? What made these two couples want to skip wedding photos altogether?

Well, I asked them and what I found was a common theme.

Couples today would rather watch a video on their smartphone or smart television than flip through a photo album. When I started in the wedding video business, video was a luxury item, more of a “if it’s in the budget…” sort of line item.

Even today I’m finding that couples in their late 20’s and 30’s are still of this mind set, but the two couples I filmed earlier this year were in early 20’s, college age.

And for the 2020 season I have three couples that booked me before they booked a wedding photographer. Again, that’s something that’s never really happened before. Not sure if they will hire someone but I found that to be very, well non-traditional in nature.

There is Always a Need for Images

Now, that doesn’t mean that wedding photographers are going away by any means, nor should they either. There will always be a need for wedding photos. I think that a couple of additional things are happening within the wedding photo industry.

First, everyone is branding themselves the same, it’s “their name photography”.

Sure, it might come across as being “exclusive” to the business owner, but if everyone in the industry is doing its then it’s not original in nature and it’s not really coming across as exclusive to the mindset of the millennial’s getting married.

Two wedding images with SIMILAR colors, style and feels.

Two wedding images with SIMILAR colors, style and feels.

Two wedding images with SIMILAR colors, style and feels.

Two wedding images with SIMILAR colors, style and feels.

Second, everyone has the same sort of look. What I mean by that is that if you choose a couple of random images from random wedding photographers, most tend to look the same. Very light, washed out whites and color corrected in Adobe Light-room to allow select colors to pop more than others. It’s not a bad thing, it’s just, well, all the same. And that same notion applies to many wedding video people too, they all start out with a drone and have similar shots, similar color correcting. My point is, people are not standing out, they’re listening to a select group of others that has worked very well for them and passing on the knowledge in hopes that it will work in their marketplace too.

Finally, is the saturation, the over saturation in the marketplace. In my local market, there are far more wedding photographer’s than even wedding venues and the same goes for just about all markets. Take New York City for example, wedding photographers outweigh venues by almost double, 663 vs. 386 according to Wedding Wire.

And it’s not just in big markets either, I randomly sampled a few locations and here is what I found:

 ·         New York City Venues 386 vs. Photographers 663

·         Myrtle Beach, SC Venues 251 vs Photographers 339

·         Washington DC Venues 916 vs Photographers 1,375

·         Houston, TX Venues 513 vs. Photographers 775

·         Miami, Fl Venues 717 vs. Photographers 920

·         Atlanta, GA Venues 920 vs Photographers 1,018

What this indicates is a couple of things, first, couples have the gamut of picking and choosing what wedding photographers they want. That’s not a bad thing to the client, because they can basically pick the budget they want to work with and find a similar style from a higher budget.

But it also says something about the tradition of images. Your parents most likely had a photographer, their parents did the same and perhaps even your great grandparents might have had some form of imagery. Wedding videographers are far less saturated and while there aren’t as many of us around, we are seeing an uptick in business in the last 5 years.

This simply goes back to change and how millennial’s are seeking things out of the box and things that are different. In the video side of the house, I’m seeing a huge uptick in couples getting video, be it in simple format or more of the newer feature film styles that many offers.

It’s simply something more commonplace than images in the eyes of today’s couple getting married and that’s a great thing for us video production houses that offer weddings in the portfolio.

Name Your Own Price for Wedding Films and Wedding Video

Name Your Own Price for Wedding Films and Wedding Video

Hello friends, I hope that you’re well today!

So, this is my 21st year as a wedding filmmaker and during the 2020 year, I will have completed my 500th, yes, I said it 500th wedding! In addition to that, I’ve been training both Curtis and Carole (my wife) to be able to film both wedding ceremonies and receptions as my demand has increased far beyond the 15 clients that I accept a given year.

They will be able to take on approximate 10 weddings for the 2020 season, in and around the Roanoke region and I will also be offering couples a small discount if you choose to hire them and our services.

Which brings me to my VERY exciting news, the pricing.

For so many years, wedding vendors have simply named their price along with various packages. Well for those that know me, in 2015 I changed my packages to more of an a la carte menu of services as well as just one or two packages throughout the year.

Well, I’ve done it once again!

I’m the first and only wedding videographer in the United States to offer a “Name Your Own Price” wedding film service.

This is how it works.

You simply discover what services and options that you’d like to get from me or my staff. Choose a ceremony video, reception video or the popular feature film or make any combination that you want along with any options you’d like to have.

Once you know what you’d like as far as my services and videos or films, just fill out the online form and put in the price that you’d like to pay!

If I have it available here, I will let you know via email and we can get things started!

If you have a reasonable price, then I will accept your offer and I will get a contract sent over to you. (Cost plus state tax and any travel fees if required)

If you price is too low, I will send you a counter offer quote that’s good for 7 days.

If you have a price thats too high, I will lower it to an amount that is more reasonable.

I want both parties to be happy with the price, level of service and the overall ending products, films, that I provide!

It’s a VERY easy and simply process and I allow couples to now simply name their budget or provide me with what they’d be willing to pay for my services.

As of this blog post my staff has 6 spots for the 2020 year around the Roanoke VA market, unfortunately however, I am fully booked for 2020. For the 2021 year, I already have one couple booked and can work with 14 more couples.

On average, my demand is VERY high, and I only work with a handful of couple’s year wedding season. I highly suggest that you connect with me as soon as possible to see if your date is open and if I’m able to work with you guys on your wedding day!

I work within ranges of $500 to $3,000 depending on what you are looking for in a wedding film or wedding video.

Wedding Video & Popular Songs, A Mixed Bag

Wedding Video & Popular Songs, A Mixed Bag

I recently had a bride reach out to me and she gave me a list of songs that she wanted in her video which was awesome, but I had to email her back and let her know that most likely to get the licensing to play those songs in the video from these major record labels was going to be hundreds if not thousands of dollars in fees and that she needed to pick out songs from my licensed music library, Sound Stripe.

It’s a common misconception that us wedding video guys can legally just put in whatever music that you’d like for your wedding video. In fact, many wedding video professionals over the years have been sued by major record labels just because they put a licensed song in their films. Take Joe Simon for example, a videographer that was sued more than six figures for using a song by a major record label. Yup, that happens, and it basically started after the whole Napster thing back in early 2000’s.

The Answer is No with a Headshake

The short answer is plain and simple, no, we legally can’t take song from iTunes or whatever and just put it into your wedding video, if there is a videographer that does, stay away from them.

Why would I be telling you that?

Easy, the record industry has had a huge crackdown on using unlicensed music and in addition to the creator being sued, i.e. a wedding videographer they can also come after the couple for damages too. In the case of Joe Simon, they went after him for six figures and the married couple a similar amount. Joe isn’t a one-in-a-million type case either, many filmmakers over the year have been approached by these record labels and either sued or gone through litigation where thousands were spent out of pocket for legal fees.

Well the DJ Played those Songs at the Wedding

Sure, and hopefully he or she had paid into a licensing company to be able to play that music at the wedding. If a wedding video has various clips of a song in the background that’s one thing, it’s not for entertainment on the video but rather a document of what took place.

This is where things get sticky too.

Say I filmed various people on the dance floor 5-10 second clips of people dancing to music. The song is in the background and by definition since its just clips of a song, it’s not really an issue, it was licensed and played at the venue with a 100 to a couple hundred people, for private use.

The issue comes into play when it’s copied to places like YouTube or social media for example, using an entire song or a big chunk of a song and putting it overtop various clips, well that’s suddenly for public use and that’s the difference.

Public vs. Private Usage

Playing music at a wedding or in your car or at home is one thing, but it’s another to use that song for public broadcast for others to show, be it on a DVD, a television or the internet. Without getting too technical, the people that own songs are typically the record labels and with that, they control where the songs are played and what they cost too.

Take a radio station for example, they pay for every song they air and sometimes that pay-per-play meaning they pay the record label money each time the song plays to the public audience.

Wedding DJ’s should be doing the same, paying a middleman company that allows them to play the songs at the wedding. Now the amount is based on whom they believe will be listening to the songs.

For a DJ, its usually a flat rate per month, $25-100 for access to a library of select music. For a radio station, they pay thousands a month to various 3rd party companies that allow them to play music across the airwaves into your home, car and headphones.

For me, I use a company called Sound Stripe. I pay an annual fee to have access to lesser known artist, but I have a wide depth of music types, speeds and tones depending on what I’m wanting to show in the video. The company I use doesn’t offer much at all in the way of top 40 or well-known artists because of the cost factors involved. There are many companies that offer this type of service but I tend to stick with them.

Let me put it this way, if you want a popular song to be on your wedding video, the song alone would cost you many times what the wedding video service itself would cost.

Stay Generic with Your Wedding Video

You may really love a song by a popular artist but if you demand that the wedding videographer put that song into your wedding video, don’t be surprised if they say no.

The risk of a videographer getting sued and you getting sued as well is not worth the risk not the money that your pocketbook can handle either. Even if you don’t ask for a non-licensed song and it’s in the wedding film, ask the videographer to change to licensed music and have it in writing if its not in the contract.

Chances are if you have non-licensed music put into your video and a record label finds out, even years after the fact, it will come back to bite you big time!

 

 

The Truth About Weddings

Hi friends, thanks once again for checking up on my weekly blog here, I greatly appreciate you taking a few minutes to connect on the website here. As a long-time wedding filmmaker here in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, I can tell you one thing that couples hate, the overall cost of weddings keeps going up and up each year. 

If you’ve been reading up on the costs of weddings in the US, you know that the average is close to $34,000 according to theKnot.com (and $25,300 adjusted for our region of Virginia), but what they don’t tell you is that average can vary greatly from region to region and there are some hard truths to the wedding industry that I’d like to share with you today.

The truth is, you don’t need a BIG, expensive wedding, in fact you don’t need any of it, not me, not a wedding photographer, a wedding venue, a dress, none of it.

All you really need is a marriage license and someone to perform the ceremony, fill out the form and mail it in, that’s about it oh, sure some basic wedding bands too.

Honestly, you can get married for a few hundred bucks as the bare minimum.

I know what you’re thinking at this point - “Josh, hello, why in the world are you tell me that, aren’t you supposed to be selling me a wedding video or something?”

Well, yes and no. I’d love to work with you on a wedding film, but not if you’re taking out a 10 year wedding loan to pay for everything, wedding video is not something everyone can afford and I get that.

But that aside, the truth of the matter is that you don’t need a fancy wedding to get married.

What I will tell you however is that a wedding brings two families together in order to celebrate a new-found marriage together.

Couples want to offer friends, family and loved ones to partake in the special day and create life-long memories, which is one of the most important in their lives. That’s why we do weddings. To celebrate their love for one another and to cherish the ones you love.

A Common Misconception About Wedding Vendors

Perhaps the most misunderstood thing about us wedding vendors is that we make hand-over-fist with pockets full of cash. In fact, more than 82% of wedding vendors in the United States are breaking even or making less than 10% profit each year.

I understand that you’re thinking about that statement say saying, how can that be?

Well, simply put, it takes a lot of capital to start a business, including a wedding business. As any wedding venue, they sink hundreds of thousands of dollars if not a million or two into their facilities and you get charged say $2,000-$10,000 for a wedding.

Scenario 1

Let’s run the numbers on a sample wedding venue for a moment. Say you bought land and setup a wedding venue and the bank loan was $300,000. That’s money for land, a building and some basics like tables, chairs, lights, landscaping and to hire 3-4 people to help run the place.

Your venue does 25 weddings a year at $2,500 per couple. That’s $62,500 a year, not bad. But then you have 3 employees part-time making each $18,500, That leaves you with $7,000 in change. You still have the mortgage payment, the power bill, advertising, marketing, business license, taxes and other odds and ends.  I highly doubt you can do that with seven grand and having to pay back the $300,000 you borrowed to begin with. Many people that get into the business have no idea how much overhead is really involved.

Scenario 2

Wedding Photographer Where the Money Goes Annually

Typical Spending Habits of a Wedding Photographer making $50,000 a year

You decide to become a wedding photographer and you set off to buy new gear on your credit card. You need a high-end DSLR, Let’s say a basic Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, well that’s $2,000 then then you have the lenses for that, let’s just say a basic 50 mm prime lens at $1,000 refurbished and 24-700 mm zoom at $1,500. Then you have batteries, lights, bag, memory cards and a decent computer with Adobe Creative cloud, say $1,800 modest.

$6,300 and you still don’t have a website, branding, or any of that other stuff. You do 25 weddings at $2,000 each bringing in $50,000. Paying down the credit cards that leaves you with $43,700, then taxes taken out is about $30,590. That’s about $2,550 a month. Not bad, but there’s insurance, replacement gear costs, travel, etc. The costs add up.

My point is that most wedding vendors are not making large sums of money, many are doing okay at what they do, but they are not crushing it as many couples think.

One thing I will point out however is a wedding vendor that’s full-time vs. part-time, there is a difference and usually that translates into costs too.

Someone that is full-time is required to work more and often charge more for their work in order to make it within the wedding business, yes there’s always exceptions, but generally speaking that’s the case.  Part time vendors usually are retired or have a full-time job so they can be more flexible with their product or service costs, many times it will save you a few bucks.

When I was a full-time filmmaker, I needed to charge a minimum of $2,200 in order to get by at what I did. Today, after selling my business in 2015 and returning to it part-time, I can charge $1,400 on average and still come out ahead, it’s a more reasonable rate and I’m offering the same types of films from years ago.

Is it Worth the Investment, having a Wedding?

The short answer, yes, it is.

Having a wedding can be fun, joyous and extremely memorable.

BUT, you shouldn’t have to go into massive amounts of debt to have a great wedding and honestly, I’ve seen couples here in the Roanoke valley that have had amazing weddings, me included in the cost, for about $19,000. Sure, that’s still a lot of money, but it’s much cheaper than the national average.

Listen, I’ve filmed weddings where the couple spent $125,000 here in Roanoke (at St. John’s and the Hotel Roanoke in 2002) to backyard BBQ weddings that cost maybe $1,500 total.

There is NO right way or wrong way to have a wedding and budget, while important, shouldn’t be the overall factor into having your wedding. Yes, you need a budget first and foremost and you need to stick to that if possible.

What Us Vendors Don’t Want You to Know

I probably shouldn’t be telling you this little secret but here it goes, vendors of all types are able to negotiate on prices for their services.

What do I mean by that?

Well, everything has a cost and that cost isn’t always a fixed one, you can always adjust cost. That doesn’t mean you walk into a wedding venue that cost $5,000 for the day and demand you pay $1,200 for it, that just won’t happen. But what we don’t want you to know is that by working the numbers here and there, you can spread your costs around and make a better wedding.

Think of it this way to help better understand.

Where you get your dress from, it may cost $1,000. Well, the truth is you’re going to wear it for less than a day, let’s be modest and say 12 hours. Then, never again. Instead of spending $1,000 on a dress, spend $500, you just saved yourself $500 and you can take that and hire someone like me to film the ceremony.

Instead of one $1,000 item you’ll get no use from after half a day, you bought a dress and scored a wedding ceremony video, while basic and while the dress might not be the one you really wanted, you’re thinking about where to spend and where to put those dollars at too.

The wedding dress shop isn’t going to tell you to spend less, after all they’re in business to make money.  That’s just one example of many that you can do in order to help maximize the use of your money.

100% of the wedding vendors out there want you to work with them and many will go to great lengths through marketing to sell themselves to you, I’m no exception here.

But while you will only work with a few vendors for your wedding there are some key elements that you should look for in a wedding vendor.

What to Seek when Hiring a Wedding Vendor

First, see if they’re available to do their product or service at your wedding. If you make first contact with a wedding vendor, just give them your wedding date, they may already have taken it. If they did, there is no sense in going down a long path only to find out the dates already taken.

My old Studio on Williamson Rd Roanoke

My old Studio on Williamson Rd Roanoke

That happened to me in 2014. I had a studio on Williamson Rd. and a bride reached out to me from Blacksburg. I asked her about her date and when it was but throughout the email communication, she told me everything but the date. After about 3 days of emailing back and forth, she wanted to come in and book me. 

So, I finally got her into the studio along with some of her friends and low and behold she finally told me the date, well I had two weddings that day and I wasn’t able to help her so make sure your wedding date is known ahead of time when talking to a wedding vendor.

Second, interview them if you will. When you meet or if you communicate through email or text, ask great questions. Each and every wedding vendor has a way of going about their communication but during that process ask questions about how long they’ve been in the business, have them give you examples of their best work and their worst, yes worst.

Providing a story about their worst and overcoming it will show you they have the ability to work around issues on the fly and that’s very important!

My point, see if they are a good fit for you as many of us do the same about you when meeting up.

Finally, see if they will work within the budget that you have setup for their products or services. Sometimes you will be, sometimes you won’t but investigate that too.

STAY ON BUDGET

If you’re like many couples, you will have a budget to work with for your wedding. The most important point here, stay with it!

Yes, you can adjust it if you need to do so, but if you do adjust something else within the budget to compensate it.

Every wedding vendor will want you to spend as much money as you can with them, buying upgrades or little things that add up to bigger amounts later so if you have a venue budget of say $4,600, stay within that budget.

Being able to navigate the wedding industry with money can be difficult if you don’t have a clue what you’re doing but stick with it as much as you can. Here’s an example.

If you want to hire me for the wedding day but you only have $1,100 for a wedding video, purchase my services that fit into that price even if it doesn’t include everything that you want.

TRUST me, you will be much happier having a service or product that fits into your budget (slightly over or under it) rather than to have to fork out another $4-500 to get something else added on.

Well, the same applies to all vendors, stick to your budget and bring it with you to all your meetings to help you keep focused.

Wedding Vendor Politics

Why yes, there are politics within the wedding industry right here in the Roanoke Valley (as well as every market out there) and that’s something that just about all the vendors don’t want you to know.

It could be that one vendor talks about another behind their back or they spread rumors about another wedding vendor, but the truth of the matter is that it does occur just like any other industry.

I’ve seen it more so with wedding photographers than any other type of vendor in the area and it’s mostly a pissing contest honestly.

Arrogance gets in the way of the real task at hand, providing great couples great wedding services and that arrogance will sometimes get in the way of others too.

As an example, I worked with a wedding photographer from Lynchburg where they (husband and wife team) treated me like a second-class person while at a wedding I filmed. They didn’t communicate with me and did a horrible job of including me in shots, then decided to talk smack about me to other vendors months after the wedding.

Well that does one thing, gossip.

Listen, no one needs it and honestly no one really cares.

Within the wedding industry those that do their job and do it well.

Then you have those that are okay at what they do but they play games by talking badly about others, others in the industry as well as couples they work with.

My point is that clients looking to hire you don’t want to hear your pitter-patter.

But there is something that you should do as a couple getting married, ask vendors if they work well with others and if they have anyone on a “blacklist” of vendors.

Some just don’t play well with each other and if you know that ahead of time, you can prevent any sort of drama at your wedding that will eventually effect your services at your wedding.

I’d say that 99% of us wedding vendors have one or two vendors they don’t like working with but for the most part, you should be good.

As a couple getting married all you need to know is that politics within the wedding industry happens and if someone tosses another business under the bus with harsh words, don’t always take that to heart, research for yourself and determine whats what.

Well friends, there you have it, the truth about weddings and the wedding industry. Sure, there is always an exception to all the rules but generally speaking this is how the wedding industry is and operates. As always, I appreciate you stopping by the wedding blog here, hope to hear from you soon!

What Couples Spend on the Wedding in the Roanoke Valley

Hi friends, I trust that YOU are doing well! Today I’m going to be sharing with you some details on the local wedding industry and show you what couples have been spending in 2018 to help provide you some ideas on what others are spending in our region.

Being able to get an idea of what other couples are spending helps you understand what you should spending for your own wedding and it helps show you if you’re in-line with the industry too.

Our Sampling Data

Our data comes from couples that got married in 2018 as we sampled 2,033 couples. While numbers are always different, this should give you an idea of the average amount spent on things.

The Overall Budget

In 2018 the overall average budget for couples was $25,350. I can further break that down and say that approximately 43% of those surveyed spent less than $10,000 on the entire wedding totaling about $5,245,140 in overall sales.

Nest, couples that spend between $10,000 and $19,999 were the second highest with just under 30% of the couples asked while 15.9% of the couples spent between $20,000-$29,999. 11.6% spent more than $30,000 and about 20 couples in the Roanoke Valley spent more than $100,000 on their wedding day or just 1%.

Roanoke Valley Wedding Budgets for 2018

2,033 Couples asked totaling $51,536,550 in Sales

Where Couples Come From

One of the things that we ask is if couples are local or not. Of the couples asked in our survey we found that 59% of them were local, living within 25 miles of Roanoke, followed by 20% living within 50 miles of the Star City.

Next, couples that lived within 50 to 200 miles, 244 couples came to Roanoke to get married while approximately 9% or 183 came from other regions of the United States to get married here. When we compare that number to the 2012 data of 6.8%, it shows that our area is seeing an increase of destination style weddings.

Overall Numbers

This is the category that most people want to know about as it details what was spent on each category and the rates. This is just an average based on the number sampled but it should provide a good insight into the overall industry.

roanoke-wedding-overall-prices-2018.JPG

Average Age of the Couples Getting Married in Roanoke

One of the things that us vendors often look at is the average age of couples getting married because it slightly varies from different parts of the United States. Here in Roanoke, the most popular age range of couples getting married is ages 25-29 or about 512 of our couples asked. There is a slightly higher higher percentage in the age range of 30-34 (17.3%) than there is 20-24 (16.2%) and what was very interesting to see is that about 323 couples asked were older than 50 years of age, about 15.9% of couple couples sampled.

Also, the average each bracket spent on the wedding varied too, the couples ages 25-29 were spending about $28,645 on average while those ages 17-19 were spending about $24,083. The age bracket spending the least is ages 45-49 at just $19,013 while the above 50+ age couple spent the most at $33,525 on average.

What Wedding Vendors Will not Tell You

As a wedding vendor going into my 21st year as a wedding filmmaker, I can tell you there are just some things that couples don’t often think about or simply understand. Today, I’m going to share with you a handful of things that vendors don’t tell those couples that get married.

A Full Time Vendor’s Product/Service is Their Livelihood

Sometimes vendors act like what they do is fabulous and fun (which it is of course), but they also make it seem like less work than it actually is. For some reason, a wedding vendor’s profession is immediately classified into a different “category” than say, an accountant or a realtor. Just because they’re providing you with a service or product related to your wedding, doesn’t mean that they’re any different than that accountant or realtor. I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again- vendors charge what they charge, and they charge it for a reason. If you have to, ask, but don’t barter or try to talk them down. It’s truly how they’re putting food on the table, not just fun and games!

Weekend’s Don’t Exist

Okay, well weekends exist for you, but unfortunately, not for wedding vendors. Weddings happen Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, as you all know. If you are requesting a meeting during the weekend, chances are good that you probably won’t be able to get one. And if you’re emailing/calling during the weekend, just know that you might not get an immediate response.

Since We Don’t have Weekends, Days off are during the Week

Vendors don’t have 2 free days during the weekend, because they’re most likely working those days. Because of this, “days off” usually occur during the week… even then, often times it’s only one day off. So when a wedding vendor doesn’t reply to your email in the normal speedy fashion on a Monday or Tuesday, it’s probably because it’s a “day off” for them- you know, trying to do laundry, buy food, clean- things that are necessary for a person to live. ;) Nowadays, most wedding pros will have an auto-responder turned on in their email, telling you this, but just in case, it’s helpful to be aware of this tidbit!

The Sticker Shock Price isn’t What We Take Home

People frequently assume that because weddings are expensive events, vendors mark up their prices just because they can. The truth is most of them aren’t. For instance, photographers generally spend just as much time editing photos after the wedding as the time they spend at the wedding itself. Right there, you divide a photographer’s total fee in half to start determining their hourly rate. Then deduct the cost of travel and an assistant if applicable.

Next, deduct business expenses like buying insurance, owning and tuning up expensive equipment, maintaining a website, and offering online viewing platforms for client pictures. Then deduct marketing costs for attending wedding shows, advertising, and more. Oh, and don't forget to deduct state and federal income taxes. Now their hourly wage is looking very different than it was before. The same math can be done for all wedding vendors. So if a vendor says that they can’t wiggle on price, then it’s because they truly can’t and still be a profitable business.

We Have Multiple Clients at the Same Time

Wedding vendors love to make you feel like you’re the only couple in their world, because they love what they do and they love helping you. In fact, what brings me an incredible amount of job satisfaction is making couples feel like they have a right-hand woman they can turn to at any point in their wedding-planning process.

However, despite their best efforts to make you feel like you're their only client, the reality is vendors are working with a number of clients and juggling multiple priorities. When emailing with vendors, it’s always helpful to group your questions into one or two emails rather than sending a number of one-off emails or texts. Sending dozens of emails makes it more difficult for a vendor to file all your emails away in a safe place, and keep track of all your information.

We all Accept Tips

Most vendors will say that tips are never expected, but always appreciated, and that is definitely true in many cases. However, it's important to learn which vendors to tip at a wedding. Waitstaff, bartenders, hairstylists, and makeup artists fall into a unique category, because it is standard to tip for these services no matter what the event or circumstance.

If a gratuity is not explicitly included in the contract, then you should be prepared to tip on the day of the wedding. The one caveat to this is business owners who provide the service do not expect to be tipped (for example, the owner of a salon would not expect to be tipped, while a hairstylist working at the salon would). For all vendors, it is up to you to decide whether the vendor went above and beyond what was expected, decide on how much you want to tip, and then dole out your tips from there.

Wedding vendors generally won’t tell you these things because no one wants to talk about these super awkward topics, but by keeping these in mind, you are much more likely to have an awesome relationship with your vendors. They'll be your A-team and will see you right through your wedding from the months leading up to the day until the very last glass of champagne is downed on the dance floor.

Two things to do at EVERY Wedding

Listen, all weddings no matter how large and expensive or how small and frugal that they might be, they all do the same thing, join two people together that love each other. As I enter my 21st year as a wedding filmmaker, I’ve seen couples stay together and sadly, I’ve seen a few of them divorce after just a year or so.

Well, with that, I have just two very simple things that I want you to do at your wedding, both of you. This isn’t a blog about how to save money or giving you some insider secrets like I normally do, today, it’s about the relationship.

Write a Letter to Yourself

No, this isn’t for the wedding feature film that I produce, but it is something that you SHOULD be doing. Write a letter to yourself as a reminder as to why you are getting married in the first place. Make promises to yourself that you’ll try to be the best spouse you can be when times are good and when times aren’t so great too, because those do happen in life.

But more importantly when you write this letter to your future self, remind yourself that you need to always communicate with your spouse, that’s one of the most important things you can do for a marriage, is communicate with each other. I know as a guy, I often find myself forgetting that my wife Carole needs to vent at times, she needs someone to chat with and to communicate with as well.

Hey, I’m a stupid guy here, as most of us guys are, we have that caveman tendency at times.

Sometimes communication comes in the form of just chatting, sometimes it’s a text, a letter, a gesture or a gift. BUT, no matter what and how you do it always find time to communicate with each other and make sure you put that into your future self-letter, so you don’t forget!

There is No Right or Wrong Way at a Wedding

This is a common misconception with couples getting married, having to do things a certain way just because. Truth be told there isn’t a right way or wrong way to do things at a wedding, so just make it the way that you want.

I highly recommend that you educate yourself before going through the wedding process, read blogs, find local professionals, ask questions on forums and groups and just try to understand the massive undertaking that you’ll be getting yourself into. Weddings can be fun, but they can also be extremely stressful if your left unguided or trying to do things on your own.

Start with a wedding budget, then seek a planner. Those two things alone will SAVE you money.

As you start your process of wedding planning, if there is something at the wedding or reception you don’t want, then simply don’t include it. For example, if you want cupcakes instead of a cake, do that instead. If your spouse doesn’t want a garter or bouquet toss, then skip them altogether.

Weddings are a celebration of both coming together as one and they should also reflect you as a couple and what you want to do at your own wedding too.

Just remember this, enjoy the day. If something doesn’t go according to plan, just laugh and have fun with it. Don’t stress if something doesn’t go right or if something goes wrong, life happens.

And there you have it friends, my two pieces of advice for the wedding day and the two things that you should be doing at the wedding.

Marriage is a great reminder that you have someone by your side and that you need to reflect that by staying open with your communication and that weddings don’t always go 100% according to plan so enjoy the day and make it your own!

Finally, if you’re in the market for a great, award-winning, affordable wedding film, reach out to me or check out my pricing and services at the top of the page.

 

The Top 5 Wedding Venues in the Roanoke Valley

The Top 5 Wedding Venues in the Roanoke Valley

Hi friends, thanks once again for coming back to the blog. It’s hard to believe that I’m winding down my 20th year as a wedding filmmaker and booking through for my 21st year, I have just a few clients left and its only the first part of September.

Okay, sorry for getting sidetracked, any who, I want to share with you the top 5 wedding venues in the Roanoke area that I highly recommend that you scope out if you’re looking for the best of the best when it comes to price, amenities, customer service and what they provide.

#5 The Plantation on Sunnybrook

This is a great little wedding venue over near Hollins University and it’s one with a lot of charm, character and great service too. This venue offers a great place for your ceremony, an awesome covered reception patio with lovely landscaping and a large indoor hall for dinner as well.

The Plantation on Sunnybrook built in 1918 by Robert Fox Boxley, a railroad pioneer from Louisa County. The Boxley's needed a farm to rest mule teams used to build the railroad. Robert Boxley died before Sunnybrook Farm was completed and Mrs. Boxley raised their five children on this majestic farm.

Years later the home was turned into a family restaurant known as "The Sunnybrook Inn" and closed in the mid 1990's. Randy and Tammy Scaggs purchased the property in 2006 and created the Plantation on Sunnybrook for weddings and events.

The Plantation on Sunnybrook has everything you need for a perfect wedding or event:

  • ·         Large, historic Plantation Home

  • ·         Beautifully renovated Ballroom

  • ·         Covered outdoor veranda with a double water feature

  • ·         Open-air boxwood garden with a charming pergola feature

  • ·         Bridal Suite

  • ·         Groom’s Suite

 

#4 The Kyle House

Kyle House, a unique wedding venue in Fincastle, Virginia, is a 1830 Victorian home that provides the perfect blend of romance and elegance. Housing an old store, two beautiful parlor rooms, and exquisite fireplaces, the venue is perfect for couples wishing to wed surrounded by history. Incorporating creativity, quality, and passion since 2012, Kyle House will take your nuptials to the next level!

Facilities and Capacity
Kyle House accommodates a maximum of 160 guests. Couples may choose from three distinct spaces to host their wedding and/or reception.

Services Offered
Couples who entrust their special day to Kyle House benefit from an array of services and amenities. Said items include, but are not limited to:

  • ·         Indoor and outdoor settings

  • ·         Event planning

  • ·         Event rentals

  • ·         Set-up

  • ·         Clean-up

  • ·         Lighting/sound

  • ·         Altar/arches

  • ·         Decor

  • ·         Photobooth

  • ·         Dance floor


Other Facilities
In the event couples are looking to host more than their ceremony and/or reception, the venue offers various wedding-event facilities. Couples are more than welcome to have their bridal shower and/or engagement party on-site. In addition, the venue also offers a bridal and groom suite.

Other Services
Kyle House offers various wedding-decor amenities upon request. These items include:

  • ·         Barware

  • ·         China

  • ·         Flatware

  • ·         Glassware

  • ·         Linens

  • ·         Tables

  • ·         Chairs

#3 Center in the Square – The Penthouse

A modern wedding venue in Roanoke, Virginia, The Penthouse is an architectural work of art. Offering backdrops of city lights and mountain ranges, the venue is the perfect setting, no matter your event size. With clean neutral decor, The Penthouse is truly a unique space for your special occasion!

Facilities and Capacity
The Penthouse has no minimum party size when it comes to hosting events. With hardwood floors and a neutral decor, couples may choose any wedding theme in the indoor space. The venue accommodates up to 500 guests for a cocktail-style affair and 150 guests for a sit-down dinner.

Services Offered
The venue offers a variety of services and amenities in which couples may choose from. Options include, but are not limited to:

  • ·         Indoor and outdoor settings

  • ·         Event planning

  • ·         Event rentals

  • ·         Setup

  • ·         Cleanup

  • ·         Outside vendors

  • ·         Lighting/sound

  • ·         Dance floor


  • Other Services
    The Penthouse offers bar services and various wedding decor items upon request. Interested couples may choose from the following:

  • ·         Open bar

  • ·         Outside alcohol

  • ·         Decor

  • ·         Tables

  • ·         Chairs

  • ·         Tents

  • ·         Tent accessories

Location
With two rooftop decks featuring 360-degree views of downtown Roanoke and the Blue Ridge Mountains, The Penthouse is the perfect backdrop for hosting your nuptials. Situated on the top of Center in the Square, the venue is less than five minutes from Virginia Museum of Transportation.

 

#2 Wisteria Ridge

Wisteria Ridge Event Center is a wedding and event venue in Callaway, Virginia. This private estate sits on 28 acres and offers a secluded and relaxing setting. The property features stunning scenery, lush landscape, and amazing views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

Facilities and Capacity 
There are multiple sites on the property to host indoor and outdoor events. They have an outdoor site next to a serene pond with mountain views, a rustic barn and cozy fire pit area. They also have a 4,000-square-foot tent that features string lighting, ceiling fans, bar area, dance floor and sound system. They have indoor restrooms, a bridal suite and groom’s quarters. They can accommodate 300 guests. 

Services Offered 
Their wedding package includes wedding planning, dance floor, chairs for 300 guests, tables, use of ten, bartenders, arches for ceremony, string lights, and decorative color lighting, set up and clean up. They offer several packages that can be customized to meet all your needs. Their event staff takes the stress out of planning and out of your wedding day. They give you a tour of the property, help you plan all the details and find the perfect vendors. They do not provide catering or alcohol but allow access to their kitchen for your caterer. They allow beer and wine at their facility with a valid ABC license. 

#1 Silver Hearth Lodge

A mountaintop wedding venue in Bent Mountain, Virginia, Silver Hearth Lodge has been a part of the wedding industry since 2010. A private and gated facility, the venue is perfect for couples looking to provide guests with intimate affair. Servicing couples in the Bent Mountain, Richmond, Charlottesville and Roanoke areas, Silver Hearth Lodge is sure to make your wedding dreams come true!

Facilities and Capacity
An expansive 40 acres, Silver Hearth Lodge accommodates up to 300 guests with seven event spaces in which to host their ceremony and/or reception.

Services Offered
Couples who book Silver Hearth Lodge can expect the following services:

  • ·         Event planning

  • ·         Setup

  • ·         Cleanup

  • ·         Indoor & outdoor settings

  • ·         Lighting/sound

  • ·         Pet friendly

  • ·         Outside vendors

  • ·         In-house bar

  • ·         Event rentals

  • ·         Decor

  • ·         Photo booth

  • ·         Dance floor

  • ·         Chairs

  • ·         Table

  • ·         Linens


Cuisine
Silver Hearth Lodge provides an extensive list of caterers which present the following services:

  • ·         Buffet dinner

  • ·         Plated dinner

  • ·         Dinner stations

  • ·         Family style dinner

  • ·         Cocktail reception

  • ·         Hors d'oeuvres

  • ·         Barware

  • ·         China

  • ·         Flatware

  • ·         Glassware

  • ·         Chocolate fountain


Accommodations
Overnight accommodations are provided by way of two strategic alliance partners:
Holiday Inn Tanglewood
Holiday Inn University

Other Services
Silver Hearth Lodge provides the following transportation and access-related services to guests:

  • ·         Parking

  • ·         Shuttle

  • ·         Wheelchair access

 

 

 

The Bridal Elephant in the Room

The Bridal Elephant in the Room

Hi friends, thanks again for checking out my blog here, I have just over 200+ articles that provide money saving tips, tricks and secrets to having the best wedding possible in SWVA and beyond.

So, the elephant in the room and no I’m not talking about the bride herself, it’s your pocketbook, money. SO many couples want to spend large amount of money on the wedding day in order to have her dreams become reality. Many times, parents will step in and pay for things, sometimes the couple gets a wedding loan, or they save up over time, but regardless where the funding comes from, it’s money spent on the wedding day.

Here in our region of Virginia, couples spent nearly $52 million dollars on weddings and wedding related items and that’s a LOT of money. What couples don’t realize is that it takes a LOT of funding for a company to operate within the wedding industry, let alone make a profit. In fact, most companies that get into the business fail within the first couple years and those that make it beyond that initial hurdle don’t see any profit or returns until the first 5 years or so.

But getting back to the funding, today I want to share with the sources of money you can pull from, my take on them and my advice on what you really should be doing with regards to spending money for the wedding and NO, it’s not about hiring me for a wedding film, although you should, lol.

Saving Money

If you’re getting married and you want to have a great wedding, this is by far the BEST way to have the wedding. Time is on your side friends, sure I know that you don’t really want to hear that, but truth be told, time here is your friend.

My personal advice is to get a side hustle or second job and save as much as you can before starting your wedding planning process. On average in Roanoke and the Roanoke Valley, couples are spending about $25,300 for their wedding and that’s basically a new car.

Get a job delivering newspapers or pizza, start a side gig or if you’re already living together, cut expenses for a while and help trim the fat so to speak. While most couples in our region take about 16 months to plan, prep and get their wedding all figured out, it’s a good time to bust that savings to help pay for the wedding day.

Sure, it might be hard for a while but that’s what marriage is all about, being able to get through things together, for better or worse.

Unsecured Loans

Many times, called wedding loans, they’re basically unsecured loans from places like Prosper.com. Honestly, I wouldn’t go this route unless you plan to pay off the loan just before or after the wedding. Many times, these unsecured loans have large interest rates, many times higher than a credit card.

I only recommend going this route if you’re planning on paying off the loan sooner than what you signed up for, otherwise you’ll be paying big interest on money and it will take a long time to pay it off, 3 to 5 years in many cases. Stay away from these if you plan to stick out payments longer than the time it takes you to get married. The only benefit to these is that you have the money up front to pay the vendors in full and that can be a good thing.

Credit Cards

Ah yes, credit cards. Most people have them the most people have large amounts of debt on them in 2019.

Listen, whatever you do, do NOT use a credit card to pay for your wedding. I don’t care if it’s 0% interest for the first x number of months, don’t do it.

When I was 19, I got my first credit card and it had a small $300 limit. I thought to myself, cool, a credit card, I’m somebody now. Well, needless to say I racked up that $300 in 1997 by purchasing a DVD player and two DVD’s. (DVD was brand new at the time and super expensive.) Well, it took me 8 years to pay off the card and all the while the credit card company kept increasing my limit and allowing me to make more purchases. As time went on and I kept making the minimum payments, I had nearly $20,000 in credit debt and of course most of that was just wasted.

I had to get a second full time job delivering newspapers for the Roanoke Times, 7 days a week. It sucked.

Just do yourself a favor and don’t use credit cards, it’s an endless cycle that you’ll never get out of and you’ll be paying on the wedding years from it.

Asking Family

Many times, couples will ask family to help pay for a portion of the wedding, usually a couple of vendors like the venue, catering or the photos and video.

Asking for family to help is a hard thing to do when it comes to your pride but is can be helpful too. If you don’t ask, you’ll never get the answer to the question.

I’d recommend that if you do plan to ask for help, don’t ask for the kitchen sink. Simply ask if they can help with a vendor or two. My recommendation is never ask for more than 15% of your entire wedding budget.

Sometimes family can’t help financially and that’s okay too, there are many other ways that you can help cover the cost of the wedding, like asking for checks rather than gifts at the wedding itself. I’d consider asking for help before you look at loans and credit cards but I’d also have a plan in process where you can show that you’re working extra to help pull your own weight with the wedding costs too. Showing family that you’re doing your part when you ask for help will generally score better than if you just ask and your sitting on your butt.

Making Payments

Finally, there are some companies within the wedding industry that allow you to make payments over time or they offer 0% financing. Here at Roanoke Wedding Video, I offer both as an alternative to the traditional 50%/50% plans that many have.

Take a wedding video price tag of $1,500 for example.  You can either fork out $750 now and the rest at the wedding or you can fork out $300 up front and make up to 10 monthly payments of just $120 a month.

Which is easier for you? 9 times out of 10 it’s going to be the smaller chunks of money and that’s because it’s how we operate as a society. We make payment son houses, cars and those pesky credit cards too.

I recommend that you look for companies that allow you to make payments over time if you can, it will help spread out that huge mountain of cash instead of paying it upfront in a lump sum. Not everyone that is a wedding vendor offers this service, but it doesn’t hurt to ask about it. For more information on my 0% in-house financing plan, click here.

My Final Thoughts

Paying for your wedding day can be either ran easy process or it can be a difficult one where you’re forking out monthly payments for years to credit card companies or loan houses. I recommend that by the time you have the wedding everything is paid for or paid for a few months after the fact.

You don’t want to be paying on your wedding cake two or three years from now, might seem like a great idea, but be smart about your wedding planning and how you spend your money.