Yesterday, I posted about our wedding budget to show you what a real wedding’s price tag looks like…. even when you are on a tight budget! Today, I wanted to share how we funded the wedding. Beware: we don’t recommend funding weddings the way we did. In this particular post, I am also referring to the funds needed to set up our household, such as buying furniture, in addition to the typical wedding expenses.
Andy and I paid 100% for our wedding, and honestly, I don’t think either one of us minded it. It meant we had full control over every decision 🙂
Savings from Paychecks: $6,500
Andy and I (but especially Andy) worked hard to cut every unnecessary expense from our budgets so we could save as much for the wedding/starting out our married life as we could. I saved approximately $1,500 and, thanks to the extra income from his DITY move in November, Andy saved $5,000. I am so thankful for this sweet man of mine for doing what he could to afford this wedding. When I wanted to cut things out of the wedding because of cost, he’d sit down and discuss it with me to see if it was something I would later regret not having.
Personal Loan: $5,000
Andy and I took out a personal loan of $5,000 because we knew we wouldn’t be able to save up this much money in a short amount of time. It will take 2 years exactly to pay off, if we don’t pay any extra on it. The interest is only 7%. This isn’t a bad option, but certainly not ideal. I had originally tried to get a $10,000 loan for the wedding, but was denied.
Credit Card: $5,500
When it became apparent that we were still going to be short for the wedding/household expenses like furniture, we decided to charge the remainder on my credit card. I know, I know, not a great idea, especially since my card charges like 17% interest! But we did it anyway. (My pastor actually asked if I could pay off my credit card before the wedding and we were like, “Um so that’s how we’re funding the wedding…”)
But why didn’t you push back the wedding?
The only solution to avoid any loans was push the wedding date back. There were a few reasons why we didn’t want to do this: 1) Andy’s unit would not be deployed for at least the first year of our marriage, 2) I wanted a career change, 3) I was ready to move out of my mom’s house/Andy was ready to move out of the barracks, and 4) we were afraid of falling into physical temptation had we waited any longer for marriage. (Sorry, but I’m just being honest!)
We also felt strongly about getting married now because life is short. We don’t know when Andy will be deployed halfway around the world and we wanted the wedding of our dreams while we had the chance. Because Andy’s unit isn’t deploying anytime soon (as far as we know), we are able to build our lives together. As of right now, we’ve been married almost 3 months and if Andy were to deploy tomorrow, I’m so grateful that we had this time to just be newlyweds.
After funding the wedding, we had approximately $3,000 left to buy furniture and other household supplies. It seems like a large sum of money, but when you are starting a household completely from scratch, it doesn’t go very far! Nonetheless, we did end up having some money left over from our household fund that we will be using for… emergency savings! (After the 2k truck repair, I’m a little nervous of not having enough for emergencies.)
We are planning to start our Debt Snowball once I go back to work and we live strictly off Andy’s income, so we can apply my income to the debts. We definitely do not plan to go back in debt ever again once the wedding is paid off. Again, we don’t recommend paying for a wedding with loans, but we heavily weighed all the options and prayed about it, and felt it was the best decision for us. I don’t regret it, because I know those loans will be paid off soon, and neither does Andy.
[2021 Update: 5 years into marriage and we do not regret getting married when we did, in fact, we wish we had gotten married sooner 😉 We don’t regret how we funded our wedding, per se, but we do regret not having the kind of wedding we wanted — eloping in the Smoky Mountains — just so a narcissistic relative could use our 100% self-funded wedding to “show off” to other people.]
Why or why not?