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Bait-and-switch brides: would you lie to vendors to get a better deal?

If you're planning a wedding, you've probably realized just how much wedding vendors will mark up their prices when they know it's for a wedding. You may be pretty peeved that you're having to pay a "wedding tax" for something that would cost less on any other kind of occasion. But in most cases, these extra costs are incurred with good reason. Despite this, some couples are trying to snag a better deal from their vendors by withholding the fact that the service will be used for a wedding instead of, say, a vow renewal, family party, or similar. We've heard these called "bait-and-switch brides."

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Our wedding was a financial wake-up call (and our lessons learned!)

After catching up post-wedding and entirely overhauling our finances, I can see all the places we went wrong. Whenever people ask how we knew it was time to restructure our finances, I answer with one thing — our wedding. This one event clarified a world of issues with our financial well-being, or lack thereof. And so, in addition to the standard simplifying and DIY projects that helped me through the process, here is some invaluable advice with which we walked away…

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13 hidden wedding costs that can blow your wallet

Wedding budgets are the necessary evil of an already fraught-with-drama time in your life. There are all kinds of things that'll balloon your wedding budget from necessary undies to last-minute tailoring to extra guests showing up. The best defense is a good offense by knowing what hidden wedding costs may sneak in and how to be ready for them.

Also, we have a quick one-question wedding budget survey that will help us craft editorial with you in mind!

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Are your parents helping pay for your wedding? Have them read this.

The only rule is to talk openly and honestly about expectations clearly before accepting any money — is the money a loan? A gift? If it's a gift, does it come with stipulations or expectations? Talking about money is uncomfortable and awkward for everyone, but it's critically important for parents who might be contributing to weddings to be VERY clear about what their expectations are… and to watch out for predatory marketing that targets parents…