Weddings & marriage

For many people, getting married, or entering a civil partnership, is one of the happiest and most exciting times of their life. However, it can also be one of the most expensive.

The ceremony itself

Getting married, or entering a civil partnership, can be one of the most exciting and happy times in a person’s life. It can also be one of the most expensive, with the average wedding in the UK now costing around £27,000!

Many people end up using credit to pay for wedding ceremonies, which can put them into large amounts of debt.

It is possible to get married without spending so much – it’s things like the venue and clothing that bump up the costs so dramatically.

Many people choose to get officially married in a registry office and then have a celebratory party somewhere else. This avoids the big costs of actually getting married in an extravagant venue and does not make your wedding day any less special.

However, do not worry if you have found yourself in debt because of an expensive wedding. There is lots of help and advice available to you, and you are not alone. StepChange advise that if your family have offered to loan you money towards your wedding and you’re on a debt solution, you must let your debt solution provider know.

Married life, communication and budgeting

Many people’s lives change dramatically when they get married.

If you haven’t already, you should have an honest talk about finance and budgeting. You should discuss things like: who will pay for what; will you use a joint bank account? You might find it hard to talk about money at first if you have not previously done so, but it is a good idea.

You should also not hide money problems from your partner – it might make things harder in the long-term and can damage your relationship.

How to talk about money with a partner

  • Be practical – It can be hard to not let emotions take over, but try to be as practical and realistic in your conversations as possible. Make a plan or budget that allows you to go forwards.
  • Actually listen and be polite/understanding – Use active listening and make sure that your voice is not the only one being heard. Be open and understanding; really try to see their point of view.
  • Keep your cool – It may be an upsetting or frustrating conversation, but remember – no money problems are unsolveable. Trying to remain calm will help you to make rational decisions.
  • Be honest – Having a conversation about finances is pointless if you aren’t being honest. Mean what you say.
  • Keep talking – This isn’t necessarily a one-off conversation.

Budgeting

How to budget by the Money Saving Expert

Making a budget can help you and your partner to know how much money you have available to spend, where your money goes each month (necessarily and unnecessarily), and whether your finances are in order.

If you are moving in together for the first time, shop around to get good deals on things like your utilities. Also consider buying pre-owned furniture, as this can hugely reduce costs.