Hiring a Wedding Planner
When you think about it, having a wedding planner sounds wonderful. Like an angel that's sent down from the heavens just to help you pick out table linens and make sure Uncle Fred and Aunt Jan are sitting at opposite ends of the reception hall, a wedding planner helps iron out all the nitty gritty details so you can more fully enjoy your pre-wedding (and wedding) bliss. He or she keeps things organized, knows your price range and can prioritize. That means all the lousy vendors will be weeded out so no one's time is wasted, and even the smallest details will be attended to. Is this sounding too good to be true? Well, it isn't. You just need money and the time to make some careful considerations before hiring anyone.
What They'll Agree To
You have to figure out just how much of hands-on approach your wedding planner will have. Some individuals may offer certain packages that vary in price depending upon the services they offer, while others have a standard array of duties they perform.
Will he or she:
- Let you know what you should be working on at any given time? This means advising you when payments are due to vendors, when you should be sending out invitations, picking up bridesmaids' dresses , etc.
- Help you create a menu that caters to your guest list (both the size of the party and individual guest needs)?
- Help you select a wedding cake that accommodates you and your guests in size and style?
- Help you create a budget and stick to it?
- Haggle over prices or help you negotiate discounts with vendors and venues?
- Handle and coordinate decorations , including table linens, floral arrangements ,chair covers , and favours ?
- Ensure that the entire day goes off without a hitch, including the ceremony and reception?
The ways in which wedding planners are generally compensated vary. Some may be better suited toward a tighter budget, while ensure that you get the proverbial "works."
- "Free" Service. Some wedding planners work in conjunction with vendors. When they recommend a vendor to you and you accept, they get a portion of the vendor's service fee. The problem with this option is that some wedding planners may offer you the service of lacklustre vendors, simply because they have a pre-arranged deal with them or will receive the highest pay-off from them.
- Flat Fee. Wedding planners that have a flat fee usually do so by offering packages that offer a specific amount of hours dedicated to certain activities.
- Percentage Fee. This is when a wedding planner asks for a percentage of the total budget as compensation for their time. This is most often see with elaborate, expensive weddings that require a lot attention, and therefore a lot of the planner's time. Typically, planners working for a percentage fee ask for around 15-20%.