It’s official! We're in wedding season!!! This means that many of you are looking for planners, florists, venues and other vendors. While it’s fun looking at companies and their previous work, receiving a quote can completely change your mood. I’m here to give you a few tips on how to negotiate prices and stay on budget with wedding vendors.
First you want to pick a budget and make sure you stick with it. No one wants to go broke from planning a wedding. Next you’ll want to decide how much of your budget to allocate to each vendor. For example if your budget is $10,000 and you want to use 20 percent for your catering, you’ll spend $2,000 for catering. When budgeting remember that your catering and venue are usually the highest expense when planning.
Look for vendors in your price range. Its pretty easy to get caught up in the glamourous pictures online but you have to remember that most of them are high budget vendors. If money is no issue then spend as much as your heart desires, but if you're on a budget use a site like The Knot that shows you the price range of vendors so you don’t have to waste time asking for quotes that will be way out of budget.
Tell them your Budget
Let’s say you're looking for a photographer and your budget is $2000. You do research on a few photographers in the area and you come across a photographer that your really like. You send them an inquiry and they quote you $2500. At this point you can choose to keep looking or you can send them a quick response letting them know how much you love their work, but your budget was $2000. They will either agree to work at your price, meet you in the middle and depending on their demand tell you they won't be able to work at your price.
When meeting with vendors treat it like an interview for a job. Be really nice and show lots of personality. I used to work as a wedding consultant at a bakery in the Los Angeles area and we would have brides that came in all the time some with horrible attitudes and some with the best attitudes. If the consultant liked a particular bride or felt a connection then they would most likely get a small discount just because they were easy to work with.
Ask for a Discount
It’s literally as easy as it sounds, just ask the vendor if they have any discounts they can offer. I get that this may make some uncomfortable so you can ask your planner to do it if you have one. Like they say a closed mouth doesn’t get fed. So just ask..what's the worse that can happen?
I hope that these tips are able to help you in your wedding planning. I know that this time can be very stressful as a bride and my goal is to make it as easy of a process as possible. I can say that these tips have worked me outside of wedding planning as well.
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