According to a study by a research company called The Wedding Report, the average wedding now costs roughly $26,029. That’s up from just $24,111, 10 years ago and $25,674 last year. And of course, that’s just the average. Weddings are more expensive in cities like New York (average price: $39,948) and Chicago ($29,846). With costs on nuptials continuing to rise, it’s not surprising that more couples are crowdsourcing the funding for the big day. If you’re looking to tie the knot soon, check out some of the methods for getting help below.
Crowdfunding. There was a day when using a crowdfunding site — like GoFundMe or IndieGoGo — for a personal expense was considered in poor taste, but not anymore. People set up these crowdfunding drives for all sorts of things, including weddings. The trick here is to not come off as tacky. The best course of action is to just be honest: You’re strapped for cash and need a little help (it’s best not to ask people to pay the entire bill) with wedding funding. Keep in mind that the people you’ll be asking for help are also your friends and loved ones, so they’ll likely be very understanding.
Credit Cards. Using a credit card to pay for your wedding should only be a consideration if you have a good history with paying off debts. As The New York Times reports, credit cards do have a few upsides, like fraud protection, bonus points and cash-back rewards. Do lots of research on the right card to use, as you’ll definitely want a card with zero interest for a year or more. Make sure you’ll be able to pay off the balance before any interest kicks in. If you don’t pay off the card before the interest hits, you could end up paying for your wedding for the rest of your life.
Wedding Loan. A wedding loan is basically a personal loan, complete with fixed and variable interest rates and with or without origination fees. The good news with these loans is that they are typically approved quickly; sometimes the funds are available to you the same day you apply. Just like with any loan, the better your credit score, the cheaper the loan will be. Again, make sure you can afford to pay off the balance before taking out the loan.
Gifts. Finally, there’s no saying that the cash you receive for your wedding can’t be used to help pay for it. Go light on the registry to encourage your guests to give you cash or a check instead — and instruct those closest to you that if asked, they should tell people that what you’d really like to receive is some green.