The First 5 Wedding Planning Decisions You Need to Make After Getting Engaged

Get ready to plan like a pro.
So, you just got engaged and have no idea where to start. Instead of making a huge list of all the things you need to do for the wedding, we recommend focusing on a few projects at a time to keep things manageable. Here are the first five decisions you should make for organized planning.
1. Finalize the budget. Before you sign any contracts or buy anything, you must determine a budget. If you or your partner's parents are offering to pay for the big day, sit down with them to discuss finances. Once your costs are solidified, you'll need to think about how to prioritize any purchases and vendors. We suggest using a budget calculator tool to help set realistic expectations for how much you can spend on each part of your day. 
2. Pick a date. Find an ideal wedding date or a few weekends that would work. Don't get too set on a specific day because it may change based on when your venue of choice is available. 
3. Choose the location. If you know you want to get married in a church or at an outdoor site, go ahead and check on the availability based on your selected dates. Once a ceremony site is confirmed, then you can start speaking with reception venues. Always tour a few spaces before you say yes and make sure to read the contract carefully before signing. Don't forget to ask what the venue provides and what you'll be required to source elsewhere. 
4. Lock down a photographer. Good photographers get booked quickly, so you'll want to secure yours as soon as you set a date. While searching, try to find someone who can also shoot your engagement photos. It's a great way for that person to get to know you as a couple and for you to get a sense of his or her skills. 
5. Ask friends and relatives to join the wedding party. Go ahead and determine who you and your fiancé will ask to stand by your sides. You'll want the bridesmaids and groomsmen around to help with some of the other big day decisions, and their support will be so helpful during the planning process. 
About the author
Founder of Wiley Events.
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