Weddings are expensive. Even the simplest lifestyle can still involve a lot of money when it comes to your wedding. If you want to have a successful wedding, you need to budget effectively for it. Here are some tips to help you keep your wedding cost-effective.

Prioritize the Right Things

You won’t be able to afford everything you want for your wedding. This is why it is so important to know your priorities. What is the most important to you? What can you live without? For instance, consider your engagement. Do you want a big diamond ring? Many people do. According to JCKOnline, 86% of center stones are diamonds, followed by 10% other precious stones, 3% colored diamonds, and 1% no center stone. If you want an expensive stone, you may need to cut back on other areas of your wedding. However, if you want a big party, you might cut the diamond ring in order to put the money toward the reception instead. Everybody’s lifestyle and desires are different, so take some time to talk this over with your partner and decide what you want.

Look at Example Budgets

There have been many weddings before yours. If you want an idea of what a wedding will cost, look for example budgets for weddings similar to what you want. While this won’t tell you exactly what your wedding will cost, it will give you an idea of what to expect as you move forward with your own wedding plans. Talk to people who have been married recently, or look online. One thing to keep in mind is that no matter how much you spend on your wedding, assume that 8% to 10% of your budget will go toward florals. From there, you can adjust it to fit your needs.

Look for Deals

If you shop smart, you can often find the things you want at a lower price. Make it a part of your wedding planning to compare prices and look for deals. This can involve shopping sales and going to a number of vendors and venues in order to compare their prices. Looking for deals can be part of every aspect of your lifestyle. For instance, Expedia says that travelers look at an average of 38 websites before booking their accommodations. This ensures they don’t miss any price drops. Research the market and figure out who has the best prices for different aspects of your wedding. This will involve more work, but it will save you a lot of money as you make your plans.

Be Realistic

You need to take a realistic approach to budgeting for your wedding. Not only will you not be able to afford a fairytale, but you likely won’t be able to save as much money as you might want to. While you might love the idea of a small wedding, these can be expensive as well. You need to be completely honest with yourself as you make your plans. Once you accept that you’ll need to pay a certain amount of money, or that you won’t be able to have your dream wedding in every way, that’s when you can really start planning.

Start Planning Early

Don’t leave your wedding plans to the last minute. Begin planning as early as possible to make sure that you can find affordable ways to make your wedding happen. If you start the process early, you can find deals and shop slowly. This will save you money on your budget.

Your wedding doesn’t have to be as expensive as you might think. If you take these tips into consideration as you begin your plans, you can save money and budget effectively for a beautiful wedding.