The Carr Report: How She Dieted Her Big Marriage!
by Damon Carr, for New Pittsburgh Courier
The average cost of a wedding in 2022 is $30,000. That’s $36,000 once you add in the average cost of an engagement ring. That’s a lot of money ! That’s a huge financial commitment for the average person. This dear friend is the reason the newlyweds look into each other’s eyes and say these words as the final declaration of their vows, “Till death do us part.” I am joking. However, if you think of a major financial obligation that you have already incurred, you rationalize and justify the financial outlay by convincing yourself that you are going to have it for a long time. When you bought that house that cost more than you originally expected, you rationalized that it was your forever home. When you bought this car that was superior to what you originally expected, you rationalized that you would keep the car for at least 10 years. As such, when you decided to get married, you wanted the fairy tale wedding with all the bells and whistles. It comes with a big price. A cost that you rationalize and justify.
That’s why I was shocked when I came across an article detailing a couple who got married on a budget of $500. It’s not a typo. I didn’t miss any zeros. Her dress for the wedding was only $47. Can you repeat that please!? The average cost of a wedding dress is around $3,000. You can certainly find a cheaper wedding dress but at $47? Who knew? Whore ! That’s how you diet a big wedding. I figured my readers and I could learn a thing or two from this budget diva.
The article I read is titled “I got married in a $47 dress and posted it on TikTok to show that weddings don’t have to be expensive” Google to read the full of the item. I will share excerpts from this article that originally appeared in “Insider”. Kiara Brokenbrough is the woman whose wedding cost $500.
When my husband and I got married in February 2022, we decided to have a small and modest ceremony. He had recently moved to California to live with me, so we felt we shouldn’t overspend and instead chose to save up for our new life together.
The dress is only $47 because I ordered it from SHEIN, a China-based clothing site. I’ve always wanted a more affordable dress to save on cost – we only spent a total of $500 for our wedding ceremony and reception, and that includes the cost of my dress and her $100 tuxedo .
All in all, I’m glad I decided to have a modest and intimate ceremony, and I’m really proud that I got the message across that investing in your wedding is more important than your wedding day. wedding or your outfit.
Our wedding started with an intimate ceremony of 30 people at an outdoor venue that we didn’t have to pay for. We rented 30 chairs for $76 and a triangle shaped arch for $230. The flower petals, cake and table runner on the floor were all given to us, and for the reception we all went to a nearby restaurant where everyone paid for their own food and drink.
I read this story several times in preparation for this article. Still, I’m still amazed that they pulled off an amazing wedding for just $500. I thought my wife and I were creative in how we cut our wedding costs down to $6,000. This cost included a wedding, 2 receptions, 2 wedding dresses, 2 tuxedos and the honeymoon. We were well below today’s average cost of $30,000 for a wedding, but we were nowhere near $500. I will share more about how we manage to reduce our costs. First, I’d like to share a wedding cost story on the other end of the spectrum.
I was listening to a Ramsey Solution podcast recently. This episode was titled: “Help, our wedding is going to cost $500,000. It’s not a typo. I didn’t add too many zeros. I was just as shocked listening to this $500,000 marriage story as I was reading the $500 marriage story. Below is a summary of its history:
He is 22 years old and earns $90,000 a year. He currently lives with his parents. He has no debt. He is not required to pay rent, but he helps with shopping and household items for the house. He currently has $30,000 in the bank and is saving 15% of his income for retirement. He has been dating his girlfriend for 6 years. They are high school sweethearts. Safe to say, this young man has a good head on his shoulders. He does an amazing job with his money. He called the show because he plans to move out of his parents’ house and have his own place. He fears it will hamper his ability to save for his $500,000 wedding. You’re probably wondering what I was wondering while listening. Why a $500,000 wedding? He comes from India. Apparently, the celebration of their marriage is a big extravaganza. In their culture, a marriage celebration and a wedding ceremony last for an entire week. That’s serious money for a wedding! That’s a huge financial commitment right from the start! I can imagine them looking each other in the eye, thinking about the cost of their marriage, saying in unison, “Till death do us part!”
Then there’s this show on Netflix called Marriage or Mortgage. On this show, each couple saved $30,000. They must choose whether to use the $30,000 to fund an amazing wedding or use the $30,000 as a down payment on their first home together. Spoiler alert. Ten couples participated. Half chose marriage. Half chose a mortgage. There was a couple that I thought were the smartest couple of all. They ran away, got married cheaply, and used the $30,000 as a down payment on their house. What would you choose, marriage or mortgage?
As for me, here’s how we can reduce the cost of our wedding. We got married on Royal Caribbean Cruise. The wedding package was $3,500. It included a wedding ceremony, a small reception and a 7 day cruise/honeymoon. We had a second reception a month later in our home town. Hence the reason for two dresses and two tuxedos. The family covered the majority of the costs. We contributed $1,000. The remaining $1,500 was for two dresses and two tuxedos. I rented my two tuxedos.
(Damon Carr, Money Coach can be reached at 412-216-1013 or visit his website @ www.damonmoneycoach.com)