Last updated on June 15th, 2018 at 07:43 pm
If you’ve created your wedding budget and your savings plan, you might have noticed that a big chunk of your wedding budget is likely being funded by you and your partner’s paychecks. In today’s article, I’m offering simple but effective tips to help you stay on track with your monthly wedding contributions by saving money for your wedding automatically. Let’s dive right in.
First, Get a Joint Bank Account
If you don’t already have a joint bank account, open one and use it specifically for your wedding funds. If you already have a joint bank account, I recommend opening up a new account to keep your wedding money separate. There are two main reasons for this. First, it keeps the wedding money out of sight – so you’re not tempted to spend it on non-wedding stuff. Second, having a separate wedding account will help you stay organized! You can quickly see how much you have available and how much you’ve spent by checking a single bank account. That’s the simplicity of having a wedding-only bank account! No need to check multiple accounts. This tip is super easy to implement and will save you a lot of time and stress.
Second, Automate Your Savings
If I had to name my top strategy for staying on track with my personal finances – it’s automation. I like to automate absolutely EVERYTHING – all of my bills are on auto-pay: my credit cards, student loans, mortgage, etc. (I never miss a payment – and that’s why I have such a high credit score!) This is truly my favorite strategy, and I highly recommend using it to save up for your wedding because it’ll help you stay on track with your savings goals without much effort.
Set Up a Recurring Automatic Transfer
You can automate your savings by setting up a recurring automatic transfer from your checking account to your “wedding” savings account. This is a super easy way to stay committed to your savings goals – it doesn’t take much effort and, plus, you’re not tempted to use that money because you’re not tempted to spend that money on other stuff.
For example, when Luis and I were saving up for our wedding, I agreed to contribute $500/month towards the wedding – and I treated that commitment like I treated any other bill. I automated it so that I would never miss a contribution. I set up an auto-transfer from my checking account to our joint ‘wedding’ bank account each month – and that was it! What I love about automation is that you only have to do it once, and never think about it again – it just happens, it’s done for you automatically. Super easy and super effective!
Take Automation a Step Further With Help From Your Payroll Office
Ask your payroll office if they can deposit your paycheck into multiple bank accounts (most payroll offices offer this option). In most cases, all you have to do is fill out a direct deposit form, indicating the new bank account number and how much you want to be deposited into that bank account each month.
For example, you can ask them to deposit $500/month into your wedding bank account and deposit the remaining balance of your paycheck into your regular checking account. Super easy right? I love this option because you won’t even see that money in your bank account to begin with – so you won’t miss it!
How Much Should You Contribute Each Month?
Figuring out how much to save each month is probably the most important part about paying for your wedding. So I wanted to offer a few tips to help you figure this out.
Take a look at your monthly budget.
Since the wedding funds are coming right out of your monthly cash flow, look at some of your spending trends and find ways to cut back on your spending. For example, you could cut back on things like dining out, shopping, entertainment, or travel. This will help you decide how much you can contribute each month – so that you don’t choose a random amount that will need to be adjusted later.
Set a goal for yourself that is realistic for your income, your spend habits, and your lifestyle. Don’t be tempted to rely on a money-saving tip that’s completely unrealistic. There are a lot of bizarre money-saving tips online, but they may not be compatible with your lifestyle. For example, I know I can save a lot of money by growing my own produce – but that’s not realistic for me because I hate gardening and I definitely don’t have time for that! Find ways to save money that are realistic. Period.
If you’re in the early stages of planning, the decisions you make at this point will determine your budget. Don’t over-commit to a monthly savings amount that might need to be drastically reduced later. For example, if you commit to saving $1000/month for 12 months, then your wedding budget will about $12,000 and you’ll start planning a $12,000 wedding. But if after a couple of months, you realize that $500/month is more realistic for you – then you’ll need to adjust your entire wedding budget and now you’ll need to plan a $7,000 wedding – that’s a big difference! So don’t over-commit.
Consistency is key.
This is probably the most important strategy to help you save for your wedding. Be consistent with your monthly contributions to uphold the wedding budget that you set for yourself. Consistency is key. I cannot emphasize this enough! If you’re not consistent, your whole plan will fall apart.
Your Next Steps
Congrats! You have enough information to take some action and put this information to good use:
- Open up a joint bank account and use it specifically for your wedding.
- Automate your savings by setting up a recurring automatic monthly transfer. Or ask your payroll office to direct deposit part of your paycheck into your wedding bank account.
- Create your wedding budget and figure out how much you can realistically contribute each month. (If you’ve already settled on your monthly contribution amount – take another look at your numbers and make sure the amount is realistic. Make adjustments if you need to.)
Saving up for your wedding is super easy – all you really need to do is pick an amount that works for you, automate it, and never think about it again. It’s super easy and I hope you’ll give it a try!