Angie's List: How to stay on budget for your wedding - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Angie's List: How to stay on budget for your wedding

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The dress, cake, flowers, and invitations…when you add it all up, including the honeymoon, the average wedding costs almost $30,000!

In this Angie's List report, how to pull off your big day without breaking the bank.

Brian Blume and Jill Zook will walk down the aisle and say ‘I do' this November.

"I've been to enough weddings and seen enough of brides literally running around in their wedding dress freaking out directing traffic an hour before their wedding and I didn't want that," Zook said.

So the couple enlisted the help of a wedding planner to sweat the small stuff and help them stay on budget.

"We've got a mortgage, we have student loans, so staying on budget is very important to us," said Zook. "We have had to get creative on how to do that, but we are making it work." 

"While we want a nice wedding, we also want a nice life, so finding that middle ground," Blume said.

Wedding planners can cater to couples on all budgets in needs of various services, most starting around $1,000.

A wedding planner can help find vendors to meet your price point, negotiate discounts, and provide money-saving advice.

"The ways they can save money is basically using a Friday or a Sunday as their wedding day," says wedding planner Marie Frey. "The venues typically charge less on those particular days. They can cut back on their guest list. Each guest that they invite is going to have a dollar amount associated with them so if they can cut back on that, that's a big help. And then sometimes just having a smaller bridal party that can help them also."

Because there are so many players involved when planning a wedding, Angie's List says you should never ignore the fine print when it comes to contracts.

"When planning a wedding it can be a highly emotional process so make sure you are reading all of your contracts start to finish so you understand how they are going to work," says Angie Hicks, founder of Angie's List. "We've heard instances of consumers being asked to give up their right to talk about their experience when signing vendor contracts. If you see a request like that in a contract walk away from that vendor. It really calls into question how much you can trust them."

"You are trusting someone with one of the biggest days of your life and to know we can trust her, it's a good feeling," said Blume and Zook.

If you or someone you know is planning a wedding, but you don't know where to start or what to focus on first, be sure to check out the Angie's List wedding checklist:

http://www.angieslist.com/articles/12-month-wedding-planning-checklist.htm

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