Borrowing for a Wedding? 3 Costs You Can't Afford to Overlook

by Christy Bieber | Updated Aug. 13, 2021 - First published on Aug. 3, 2021

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A bride and groom raising their hands and cheering while walking down the aisle after their wedding.

Image source: Getty Images

These surprise costs could make your wedding more expensive than planned.

Many couples who decide to tie the knot will end up taking out a wedding loan. That's because weddings can be extremely expensive, and it can be hard to pay for them out of savings.

If you're taking out a personal loan to cover the cost of your wedding, ideally you'll keep the balance as low as possible so you can limit the debt you take on at the start of your married life. However, you also want to borrow the right amount to cover the essentials so you don't end up with vendor bills that you can't pay.

That's why it's so important not to overlook these three surprise costs that are often forgotten.

1. Postage

If you're sending out fancy custom invitations, stationers often don't mention how much it will actually cost to mail them. And while you may assume you can stick a regular Forever stamp on the envelope and pay just a few cents per mailing, that's not necessarily the case.

Wedding invitations are often oversized, oddly shaped, or heavier than the standard letter. That means shipping could cost more than you expect. It's also good form to include stamped reply envelopes with the invitation if you expect people to RSVP by mail, and this adds to your costs.

While postage may not seem like a big expense, if you're sending out hundreds of invitations, these shipping costs can add up to more than you think. Be sure to factor them into your wedding expenses.

2. Overtime fees

No one wants to watch the clock and kick out their guests while they're still having a great time. As a result, it's common for weddings to run a little longer than scheduled. The only problem with that is that you could end up owing overtime fees to the reception venue, the band, the photographer, and other vendors who end up staying late at the wedding.

It's a good idea to leave yourself a small cushion in your bank account for these extra costs if you aren't planning on turning off the lights and sending everyone home before added fees kick in.

3. Wedding dress alterations

Many people who buy wedding dresses have them altered so they're a perfect fit -- and this often isn't included in the price of the dress (although for some shops it is). Weddings can also take a long time to plan, and if your shape changes before the big day, this could lead to additional alteration fees as well.

Obviously, you want to be as prepared as possible for all aspects of your wedding -- including the costs. So when you're deciding how much to spend -- and what is an appropriate amount to borrow on a personal loan -- be sure to keep these potential expenses in mind.

And if you're aiming to keep borrowing costs as low as possible, you may need to make some cuts in other nonessential areas to cover these expenses if they crop up. Otherwise, you could end up with a bigger loan balance than you want -- or even with credit card debt on top of your personal loan if you can't afford to pay these costs out of pocket. The last thing you want is to start off your marriage with money stress, so it pays to be prepared.

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