5 Ways to make your Dream Wedding Way Cheaper

5 Ways to Make Your Dream Wedding Way Cheaper

Your wedding will be one of the most important days of your life, but it can easily become the most expensive as well. If you're not careful, you could easily find yourself dropping five figures on this one day of Chicken Dancing, which is just plain absurd.

Even if you were the most careful budgeter on the planet every other day, saying "I Do" could throw any and all financial progress completely down the toilet.

So we're here to help you figure out ways to keep your special day under budget and WAY below the national average. It's easier than you think. You could...

Hold the Reception in an Inexpensive Place

The place you rent out for your reception is, far and away, the most expensive part of any wedding bill.

A particularly pricey venue can charge ridiculous fees for just about anything, and just about all of it is completely useless. Do you really need to pay some guy a couple hundred bucks to cut the cake for you? Probably not -- you know how knives work.

So instead of renting out some VFW hall or swanky bar, just go out and have inexpensive fun somewhere on your own, like a restaurant. It might make your reception an "unofficial" one, but you'll still be hanging with your friends and having fun, which is kind of the whole point of the thing.

And besides, your drunken friend attempting karaoke will be way more entertaining (and cheaper) than paying some DJ a few thousand bucks to press "shuffle" on his iPod.

Only Invite Your Closest Family and Friends

Each guest can drive your bill up by hundreds of dollars, and do you really need hundreds of people in those pews? Very likely not, so instead just invite those closest to you and your spouse.

An intimate gathering of immediate family and close friends is a lot more personable than inviting everydiv you've ever met because you "just can't decide" who to not invite.

Turn it into a Potluck Supper

Catering can be gruesomely expensive, especially if your guest list is high. But if you ask guests to bring along a little something for everyone to munch on, then you don't need to hire a caterer at all!

Whether they cook a big pot of soup from scratch or simply buy a couple roast chickens from the grocery store, a potluck wedding will save money and make your stomach very happy indeed.

Hire a Talented Friend to Take Pictures

A professional wedding photographer wants to get paid like a professional, and that figure is usually pretty damned high.

You don't need one -- many people are very good amateur photographers, and there's a very good chance you know one of them. Hiring them is all but guaranteed to be cheaper than forking over hundreds to some stranger whose only real credentials are "has a really, really big flash."

Shop Around for the Cheapest Cake Maker

We're not going to sit here and tell you to make your own wedding cake -- you want that thing to look pristine, and for that you need an expert hand. But who says that expert hand has to take all your money?

Don't go for the first person you find just because you want to get it over with -- take the time to shop around, compare prices, and find that elusive cake master who can craft a work of art and charge a respectable amount to do so,

Of course, if you are a pastry artist (or know someone who is,) then that makes your search even easier. And easy is good.

Keep Your Wedding Budget Intact with Mint

Before you start organizing your wedding, find out how much you can feasibly spend on it, and stick to that number. Start up a wedding budget, separate from your regular daily budget, and track everything that goes into your big day.

Mint.com is one of the easiest ways to do this. Just start up a new budget sheet, fill it out with everything you'll need to get properly married, and later add in anything you purchase.

Mint will then deduct that amount from your budget and let you know immediately and unambiguously how much you have left to spend.

Wedding costs can quickly spiral out of control, no matter how cautious you are. Constantly checking and updating your budget is an easy way to make sure that never happens, while also allowing you to enjoy your dream wedding.

Click here to get started on your wedding budget, or anything else in life you need to keep on financial track!