Top 5 things to consider when planning your wedding...

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When planning a wedding, there are literally hundreds of things to consider. Since having been a part of many weddings, I decided to put together a list of things to consider for your big day. Assuming you have already picked a date, this list will help prioritize the most critical things for a successful wedding day.

1. Budget

The average cost of today's weddings is about $28,000. Sounds like a lot but, that goes fast! Don't go buying everything you think is cute for your wedding day. Your budget will evaporate faster than you can say I DO. Instead, make a list of whats most important and spend accordingly. You don't want to wind up using your gifts to pay back your wedding expenses.

2. Photographer

Yes, I put this ahead of the dress! A quality photographer will not only capture the biggest day of your life but, also provide you with your first family heirloom...an album. I am not talking about a photo book that you can make online or at your local drugstore. Instead, a professional wedding photographer can make you a beautiful modern album that will provide you with incredible lasting memories. Wedding photographers are not a cheap expense. However, you are essentially planning a $28,000 one day party. You have to ask yourself, do I want to remember this forever?

3. Wedding Party/Guest List

After you announce your engagement, you can bet your close friends will be wondering who's going to be included. That is the first step in determining your guest list. After you decide who will stand up for you and the family you have to invite, your list will be well on it's way to filling up fast. Based on your budget, you have to keep the guest list to a manageable number. You can expect 10-15% of those invited no to RSVP.

4.  Venue

Deciding where to hold the party of a lifetime is no easy task.  You will have to visit some places that are available for your day. They will wine & dine you trying for your business. The venue should be all about the food and the atmosphere. If you have a guest list of 200 and the venue can only hold 150, trim your guests or don't even waste your time visiting them. Most venues have a preferred vendor list. They can actually help you find other vendors like DJ's and florists.

5. The Dress

If you're a brides who dreams of shopping at Kleinfeld's in New York, the dress may be first on your list. However, today's bride spends her own money on the wedding. This means, your dress is still very important but should not dominate the day as far as cost goes. Every bride has a vision of looking more amazing than any other bride on her wedding day. The reality is, you future husband will be blown away by you no matter if your wearing a couture dress or one right off the rack. Truth is, unless you are marrying David Tutera, the groom will never know who your dress was designed by. Say yes to a budget friendly dress.

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