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Old 09-20-2011, 09:49 PM   #41
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We put our 2 girls through college. They graduated with no debt. We have told them that we will not pay for a wedding. So far there have been no nuptials.

We may change our minds and put some money towards a wedding but I feel funding their a college education was a better idea than a wedding. The bonus being that if they marry and subsequently divorce their education will not be considered marital property.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:56 PM   #42
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Here's a fun little graphic on the average wedding versus the recent royal wedding. Notice how small the percentage is currently of weddings paid for by the bride's parents.

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Old 09-21-2011, 08:43 AM   #43
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Here's a fun little graphic on the average wedding versus the recent royal wedding. Notice how small the percentage is currently of weddings paid for by the bride's parents.
The graphic says 30% of brides and grooms pay for their wedding, and 17% of the brides parents pay for the wedding. I assume this means that 70% of weddings are paid for in part or in whole by the bride's and/or groom's parents (since only 30% are paid for by bride and groom themselves). I bet an age distribution would show that many of the self funded brides and grooms are older and/or on their 2+ marriages.
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Old 09-21-2011, 10:23 AM   #44
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I am one of 4 brothers. My Dad gave each of my brothers a lump sum when they got married. I moved away from home (to another country in fact) and 10 years later in my mid-30's finally decided to get married. (After many years of engagement the marriage didn't happen, but that's another story.)

My Dad told me to let him know when the wedding would actually happen as he had something for me. My brother told me that he'd had the money saved for me all those years. My Dad had decided at some point that he'd give each of his sons a lump sum when they got married and he stuck to that idea, even though I moved halfway across the world and took my time finding a partner.

Well, that's my story. Dave C - I agree with the others who say it's up to you.
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Old 09-21-2011, 02:31 PM   #45
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Of course the choice is up to you.

My grown, self-supporting daughter decided to marry a couple of years ago when she was 31.

When she became engaged I wrote her a check for $10K, and told her that she could either use it for her wedding or for something else big, like the down payment on a house or car. She used it to help pay for her dream wedding, and of course she made all the decisions in planning it.
This will be my approach. Though I know my ex-wife will surely call me cheap for only giving $10K. Knowing my daughter and ex, they will want to throw one of those $50K extravaganza weddings. I just view that as such a total waste of money and quite frankly it really infuriates me.
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Old 09-21-2011, 06:16 PM   #46
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This will be my approach. Though I know my ex-wife will surely call me cheap for only giving $10K. Knowing my daughter and ex, they will want to throw one of those $50K extravaganza weddings. I just view that as such a total waste of money and quite frankly it really infuriates me.
I don't even know if my ex contributed anything to my daughter's wedding - - I didn't ask. I suspect that he didn't, but it doesn't matter to me. I just wanted our "little girl" to be happy.

The wedding was scheduled to occur the week before I retired, which was kind of a tough time for me to let loose of my money as you might imagine. I just contributed all I felt I could afford, enough that it hurt but not enough for me to regret it. Her dream wedding was small but absolutely beautiful and everything was perfect. It probably cost more than $10K but I didn't ask, and I didn't ask where she got the rest of the money. I know her dream wedding meant the world to her and it was great to see her so happy and lovely that day.
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Old 09-21-2011, 09:20 PM   #47
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When I saw "adult daughter" in the thread title I thought you were going to be talking about someone in their 30's who had completed grad school and was on a professional career track. I can see the rationale for not paying for that person's wedding.

Instead you're talking about a 22 year old...and while there are some independent 22 year olds out there, I would not consider most of them to be fully independent adults the same way I would consider a 30 year old with an established career to be.

If you can't afford to help with the wedding expenses, that's that. If you just don't want to - well I don't think the person you've described here falls into the category of someone who is so financially independent that they wouldn't need or appreciate your help. But it's your money.
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Old 09-22-2011, 06:42 AM   #48
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When I saw "adult daughter" in the thread title I thought you were going to be talking about someone in their 30's who had completed grad school and was on a professional career track. I can see the rationale for not paying for that person's wedding....I don't think the person you've described here falls into the category of someone who is so financially independent that they wouldn't need or appreciate your help.
I don't think most of us pay for the wedding because our daughters can't afford it, we pay for it as a gift and as tradition. I don't know whether my daughter will want a big wedding (I would guess no right now) but I will gift her a substantial amount for a wedding or whatever she wants to do with it at some point. I suspect that by the time she marries she will be in her 30s and saving for ER. As I mentioned above, I don't want to short change her because she was conscientious. I think the worst possible thing would be to pay for the wedding of a 20 YO who chose to marry young and fail to pay for her sister who waited until she was more settled. I lean toward "even Steven" in my treatment of siblings but, if anything, I would be more open to helping (loaning, gifting) to a kid who had always been financially responsible rather than a prodigal child.
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Old 09-22-2011, 08:38 AM   #49
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This will be my approach. Though I know my ex-wife will surely call me cheap for only giving $10K. Knowing my daughter and ex, they will want to throw one of those $50K extravaganza weddings. I just view that as such a total waste of money and quite frankly it really infuriates me.
I'm struggling with some of this skyvue....meaning the costs. I've spent the last 2 weeks costing out a wedding for my 23 year old only daughter. The wedding industry is a racket. 50K doesn't necessarily get you an extravaganza....unless you call a wedding with 100 to 150 people an extravaganza. I've had quotes of $129 to $199 a person for a reception. That is just food and beverage and does not include open bar, space rental fees, flowers, music, photographer, invitations, cake, dress and all the minutia in between. I just got a quote for a photographer for $6,000!!!

My point is ....a dinner at a nice restaurant does not even begin to cost $199 per person. These wedding venues have huge profit margins!
I have not taken a first step with any deposits yet as I am trying to figure out a way to give her what she would like while containing costs. It can be done cheaper.....but that is not what she and her fiance want.

My quest list is getting slashed again.....
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Old 09-22-2011, 08:56 AM   #50
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I just got a quote for a photographer for $6,000!!!
After reading this book Amazon.com: Best Business Practices for Photographers, Second Edition (9781435454293): John Harrington: Books that is actually a fair price.

The photographer is running a sole proprietor business, he/she must have continually updated equipment (and for a wedding they have two of everything for obvious reasons) some expensive and specialized software, etc. He's got taxes, insurance, he's paying into his own retirement fund, and all the other living expenses we all have.

And on top of all that, he'd better be a whole lot better than anybody's Uncle Harry with a DSLR. To do that he'll scout the location beforehand to check out the lighting, maybe take some test shots, spend time retouching photos later, and in general spend about four or five times the time on the project than just the wedding shoot itself.

So $6k is not out of line.
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Old 09-22-2011, 09:03 AM   #51
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WOW, those costs seem very high. I live in Northern VA near Washington DC, a very expensive area, and did a very very nice wedding for under 10K for about 60 people. Granted it was a small wedding, but felt it was reasonable. That was at a Private Country Club, Surf and Turf meal, really good wine with dinner, open bar with top shelf everything, Band, Photographer, wedding cake, favors, rehearsal dinner and all other incidentals. CC bill for room meal, rehearsal dinner and open bar was about 6K and everything else was about 3.5K.
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Old 09-22-2011, 09:09 AM   #52
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I find the whole wedding business baffling. In your early 20's there are many things that you need - a good education, a dependable car, a house or a good start on a down payment, a professional wardrobe, healthcare - maybe child care, if you have children. But a $20K or $30K party? The whole thing strikes me as nutz.
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Old 09-22-2011, 09:16 AM   #53
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The costs and type of wedding really vary by location. My daughter got married in upstate New York and the wedding was reasonable . Had she got married in New Jersey where she grew up it would have been triple the cost .
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Old 09-22-2011, 09:51 AM   #54
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I find the whole wedding business baffling. In your early 20's there are many things that you need - a good education, a dependable car, a house or a good start on a down payment, a professional wardrobe, healthcare - maybe child care, if you have children. But a $20K or $30K party? The whole thing strikes me as nutz.
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Old 09-22-2011, 09:57 AM   #55
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I find the whole wedding business baffling. In your early 20's there are many things that you need - a good education, a dependable car, a house or a good start on a down payment, a professional wardrobe, healthcare - maybe child care, if you have children. But a $20K or $30K party? The whole thing strikes me as nutz.
+1 also. I know that the wedding day is a significant day for a couple, but there are many ways to create a memorable day without the huge expenditure. If whoever is paying for the wedding can easily afford it, it's fine, but for a couple to begin their married life with a large debt because of the wedding doesn't set a good financial precedent for their future life together, IMHO.
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Old 09-22-2011, 10:41 AM   #56
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After reading this book Amazon.com: Best Business Practices for Photographers, Second Edition (9781435454293): John Harrington: Books that is actually a fair price.

The photographer is running a sole proprietor business, he/she must have continually updated equipment (and for a wedding they have two of everything for obvious reasons) some expensive and specialized software, etc. He's got taxes, insurance, he's paying into his own retirement fund, and all the other living expenses we all have.

And on top of all that, he'd better be a whole lot better than anybody's Uncle Harry with a DSLR. To do that he'll scout the location beforehand to check out the lighting, maybe take some test shots, spend time retouching photos later, and in general spend about four or five times the time on the project than just the wedding shoot itself.

So $6k is not out of line.
I have no doubt he/she photographer has overhead. And yes...these photographers are very skilled. I was just ill prepared for the prices I'm getting. By ill prepared...I'm not talking about not having the money. We do. I'm talking about probably no less than $35K to $50K and the LBYMer in me....is having a hard time. That is a good size downpayment on a house!

Still, she is my only daughter and we will do this to give her "her day"....but I will try hard to find areas that we can cut costs in ....so it doesn't escalate but so far.....(I hope )
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Old 09-22-2011, 01:50 PM   #57
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I'm struggling with some of this skyvue....meaning the costs. I've spent the last 2 weeks costing out a wedding for my 23 year old only daughter. The wedding industry is a racket. 50K doesn't necessarily get you an extravaganza....unless you call a wedding with 100 to 150 people an extravaganza. I've had quotes of $129 to $199 a person for a reception. That is just food and beverage and does not include open bar, space rental fees, flowers, music, photographer, invitations, cake, dress and all the minutia in between. I just got a quote for a photographer for $6,000!!!

My point is ....a dinner at a nice restaurant does not even begin to cost $199 per person. These wedding venues have huge profit margins!
I have not taken a first step with any deposits yet as I am trying to figure out a way to give her what she would like while containing costs. It can be done cheaper.....but that is not what she and her fiance want.

My quest list is getting slashed again.....
This is news to me. My wedding was a full 15 years ago but we had it at a very nice country club, open bar (beer & wine), photographer, dj (no band) and invited 150 people for $10,000. I was figuring you could do the same type of thing for $15K today.

My wedding was much nicer than what I was used to as I grew up in the sticks. My sisters weddings were thrown for about $5K each but those were buffet style weddings in VFW hall or other similar buildings. Where I grew up you rented a hall, hired somebody to cook the food, bought your own kegs, hired a dj and that's about it. I grew up rural Ohio though and realize that is not what is normal in most urban areas.
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Old 09-22-2011, 02:08 PM   #58
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Weddings and receptions can be done without spending a lot, but they can also cost as much as a house. This industry specializes in selling dreams and upselling like no other and is ruthless in both creating and exploiting family tensions. Anyone planning on sponsoring nuptials and related celebration must be focused and equally ruthless or just give in, shrug the shoulders, think wtf and make sure the bank accounts are well stocked. There is no middle ground here.
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Old 09-22-2011, 02:29 PM   #59
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We haven't even touched upon the way that diamonds have been very successfully marketed as the only acceptable stone for an engagement ring. Not only that, but we have even been told how much we should be spending by the "Is two months salary too much to spend on something that will last forever" campaign.

Many people have fallen for this successful ad campaign and believe that spending a lot of money is the only proper way to show love for their spouse.

How many married folk here did not buy (or receive) a diamond engagement ring? I bet not many.
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Old 09-22-2011, 02:37 PM   #60
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How many married folk here did not buy (or receive) a diamond engagement ring? I bet not many.
I inherited and wore my grandmother's diamond engagement ring. So, I received it but it cost us nothing. We spent a total of $32 for our wedding rings - - - $20 for his, and $12 for mine. Both actually were gold and didn't turn our fingers green, but they were very, very thin and probably second hand (from a small rundown shop in downtown Meridian, MS). At times I felt a little envious of those wearing nicer rings, but eventually we decided that the expense of the rings and the length of the marriage had an inverse relationship among our friends.
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