4 Conversations to Have Before Taking Out a Wedding Loan

by Christy Bieber | Updated July 21, 2021 - First published on March 10, 2021

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A bride and groom on a sunny rooftop while he kisses her forehead and she smiles.

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Don't borrow for your wedding until you talk these issues out with your fiancé.

Wedding loans are very popular -- and with good reason. The average cost of a wedding is close to $34,000, according to The Ascent's research, and few people can afford to pay this entire amount out of pocket.

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the size of wedding parties over the past year. But many people are optimistic about the chance to host large events again as vaccination rates rise.

If you're thinking about taking out a personal loan or otherwise borrowing to fund your nuptials, it's worth thinking through the consequences first. Here are four key conversations you should have with your fiancé before you apply for a personal loan.

1. Is borrowing really necessary?

When you're caught up in the moment, it may seem like you need a lavish wedding -- even if you have to borrow to get one. But the reality is that most of the major expenses associated with a wedding often aren't necessary to have a great time.

If you can scale back your festivities enough to pay for the wedding out of your savings, it's worth at least thinking about. That way you won't start your life together with debt to pay back. Take a close look at the numbers and have a conversation about whether there are any tweaks that would allow you to avoid borrowing.

2. How long is it going to take to pay back the loan?

When you take a wedding loan, you commit future income to paying it back. It's important to know how long your money will be tied up covering the costs of your nuptials. So talk with your fiancé about what loan repayment timeline you'll choose.

The shorter the payoff term on your wedding loan, the higher your monthly payments will be -- but the less the loan will cost over time since you won't pay interest over a long period. Carefully consider the tradeoffs between monthly payment amount, payoff time, and interest cost. Then you can find a solution you're both comfortable with.

3. How will we share responsibility for repayment?

If you'll combine your finances after the wedding, the money for the loan will come out of your joint accounts. But if you plan to keep things separate, you'll need to figure out how to split responsibility for your wedding loan payment. Make sure you're both on the same page.

If your fiancé assumes you'll be covering 100% of the cost because you're the one who wants the big wedding, but you're planning to split payments 50-50, it could cause conflict. It's best to avoid starting your married life with a fight over who is going to pay for the wedding party.

4. How will this affect our other financial goals?

Marriage is just the start of a life together. And chances are good you'll have things you want to do as a couple, such as traveling, buying a house, or starting a family. The financial commitment of a wedding loan could affect your ability or your timeline to do these things.

Make sure you both understand the impact the wedding loan payments will have on your budget and your efforts to accomplish other objectives.

These conversations will help ensure you're both comfortable with the way you finance your wedding. And you can assess the big picture of what the loan will mean for your life together. That way, you can either borrow with both eyes open or decide to make a different choice.

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