According to an April 5th article on cnnmoney.com, the average wedding cost in the US rose to over $32,000 in 2015. Compare that to the median household income of $50,000 and you can see that wedding mania may be a little out of control.
Of course, that number is an average and costs around the country vary. In Manhattan, the average wedding cost is $82,000 (gulp!) and in Alaska, you can get away with a mere $17,000 for your big day. I though my relaxed, hippie, granola state of Colorado would be much lower than average, but nope, we come in at $31,000.
Thinking of tying the knot soon? Of course, you want your day to be unique, personal, meaningful and fun. You know what else is fun? Financial security!
So, to compare, let’s look at some wedding costs and an investment of a similar amount can grow to over time. Source, www.theknot.com.
- Average wedding cost overall at $32,000 invested for 35 years earning 6% interest = $245,000 retirement nest egg
- Average cost of a reception live band at $3,500 invested for 20 years earning 6% = $11,000 in your kid’s 529 college savings account
- Combined cost of a wedding photographer and videographer at $4,300 invested for 5 years earning 6% = $5,700 for your 5-year anniversary vacation
And the flip side is this: $32,000 on a credit card charging 17% interest for the 10 years it takes you to pay it off makes your wedding’s overall cost of $58,000!
Not to kill your hopes and dreams, but if your dad offers you cash to elope you might consider taking the money! Viva Las Vegas!