So, here it is - your big day (plus the honeymoon)! You've planned and saved and worked to your budget. For most couples, the wedding day and honeymoon can seem like the be-all and end-all of their immediate financial goals - but that's usually not the case.
Part of your planning should focus on what happens when the wedding dress has been hung up and the holiday is over. A post-wedding cash stash is a crucial part of looking forward to the next part of your lives together.
Talking the talk
First thing's first. It's important that you and your partner have as much openness with each other about your finances as you do with other aspects of your lives. Being honest about debts, income and assets can help you make the right decisions for your future together. Don't forget to talk about your expectations when it comes to financial decisions - knowing your partner's ideas about the future you'll share can help to put to bed any doubts and worries. With this being said, work out the amount you can pool together with your collective budgets to ensure that you have enough money for your big day and the days that follow.
The simple stuff
Once the honeymoon is over, it's not unusual to feel a little flat. Going back to 'real life' can seem like a chore, but your adventures as a married couple are only just beginning. What you definitely don't want to lose is the romance that you had before your wedding. Spending time with each other shouldn't have to be an afterthought. Remember that you'll still want to treat each other to your favourite activities post-wedding! Dinner dates are just as important after you've said "I do". Having part of your budget set aside for these special moments may seem trivial, but it can be a great reminder of why you wanted to get married in the first place.
A new marriage means a new family who will become your in-laws. Even if you already have a fantastic relationship with your spouse's family, your new status as a married couple might mean that you feel a responsibility to see each other's families more over the (already stretched) holiday periods. For many couples, this means organising holiday trips that include time off work, gift purchases, car rentals and flights. A holiday can be a stressful enough time with just one family to be thinking of. Having a post-wedding cash stash can help turn your next holiday into what it should be - time spent getting to know the newest members of your family and introducing your partner to your own.
Home is where the heart is
Although it's one thing to save up for that specific renovation you've both been dreaming of, it's quite another to have to pay for emergency repairs. Having a sudden and serious plumbing issue can certainly dampen the romantic mood, and feeling stressed about whether you can afford to get it fixed won't do you any favours. Making sure you and your spouse have an emergency fund ready for when you return from your honeymoon will ensure that you give yourself a wedding gift that won't have been on your registry - peace of mind.
For more tips on tying the knot, try our budgeting for your big day article.