With the average wedding in the UK costing in excess of £20,000, you have to be extremely fortunate to have this kind of money going spare. Many couples spend years saving for their wedding. I spoke to a couple at a wedding fayre recently who had been engaged for 18 years so that they could have the wedding of their dreams!
We have put together a few tips that are unlikely to cover the whole cost of your wedding but will certainly go some way in supporting you to reach your target so that your dream wedding is in sight!
- Budget! Firstly, be very clear on your wedding budget and stick to it. Work out exactly what you can afford and what exactly this will cover. We would never advise taking out a loan or getting into debt. It is unlikely that you will be able to have everything you have ever wanted at your wedding unless you are one of those celebs than can afford a ‘flower wall’ that cost more than most family homes in the UK! However, raising extra cash can give you a bit of flexibility on the extra special items that you have always dreamt of.
- Sell Sell Sell! One persons’ junk is another persons’ treasure! When we were getting married, I managed to raise almost £500 simply by selling unwanted items in my house. I went through each room systematically and put everything in a pile in our living room. I then took pictures of each individual item and sold it on eBay, www.gumtree.com and www.preloved.co.uk. Facebook has just launched its online marketplace so selling to local people is becoming increasingly more easy to do. It’s really important to take great pictures as the research shows this makes all the difference in how much your item will sell for. Anything that didn’t sell online, I took to the local car boot sale. Prices for sellers at car boot sales can vary, usually between £4.00 and £12.00 so make sure to check sellers’ fees first. In addition, make sure you know the value of what you are selling so you don’t give your items away at a fraction of what they are worth.
And don’t forget, anything sells. Clothes, shoes, toys, books, furniture, kitchen items, even old, empty perfume bottles. We even sold half a used tin of paint on eBay!
- Use your Skills-Are you particularly skilled at something or do you have an expertise that you could sell? Several people I know have put their skills to use by offering their services on sites such as Gumtree. Are you good at writing CV’s? Do your friends always come to you for help with their job application forms? Put your advert out there, you never know! Do you have a degree or an expertise in a particular area of study or education? Lots of people are currently using tutoring, either in person or online as a way to supplement their income. You don’t have to be a qualified teacher currently to be able to offer tutoring services but need to have a high level of experience or knowledge in a particular subject. Sites such as www.tutora.co.uk and the www.thetutorpages.com are a good place to start.
- Combine your goals– Lots of brides and grooms often want to lose weight and tone up before the big day. Instead of paying large gym membership fees, why not get fit whilst getting paid for it! Brisk walks or jogging are a great way to shed the pounds and could be combined with a flyer distribution job. Ask around at your local shops, takeaway shops in particular are often looking for workers, or look online for job adverts in your local area. An hour exercise while getting paid is a win win situation!
- Get creative! Have you always wanted to show your artistic side but haven’t had a chance to since school Art classes? Well here’s your chance! The market to upcycle furniture is huge and can be extremely profitable. Car boot sales, second-hand shops and online sites are a great place to pick up old furniture to upcycle. Simply sand the item down and repaint to create a beautiful new piece of shabby chic furniture. There’s a huge profit margin to be had if it’s done well. Old furniture can be picked up for very little or often even free. I managed to purchase our table and 6 chairs for 99p on eBay, being the only bidder. I spent £40.00 on materials for the upcycling process and now have a dining set that could sell for in excess of £300. There are lots of online tutorials on how to upcycle. It can be time consuming but definitely worth it to make a bit of extra cash.
- Rent your driveway or Garage-Parking, especially in big cities can be a nightmare with cost of parking in public carparks often costing an absolute fortune. People are often desperate to park close to a train or tube station or near to their work place. Many people are choosing to utilise their driveway or garage to earn a few extra pounds. You can hire it out on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. If you live near a theatre, football stadium or large events venue then lucky you as your parking spot will be worth even more on event nights! Check out sites such as yourparkingspace.co.uk or www.justpark.com. Be sure to check if your council has any restrictions or regulations with this.
- Are you lucky enough to have a spare room? Lots of families supplement their income by renting out their spare room on a temporary basis. If you have a while to go before your big day, this could be a great addition to your budget. By signing up to the Rent a Room scheme, not only do you enjoy the extra income from the rent, but also up to £7,500 a year is free from tax according to moneyadviceservice.org.uk. Letting a room to Foreign students is also a good option when considering your spare room options. If you have time spare to teach English and support the student with their learning there is extra income to be had. Check out what is available in your local area. If you are renting, then ensure your landlord consents before you proceed with this option.
We would love to hear any other advice that can be given to engaged couples on how to raise some extra cash for their special day, especially if it has worked for you so if you have any ideas then feel free to share them. Don’t forget it is essential that you check out how any extra income affects your benefits or the taxes that you pay and whether there are any regulations surrounding selling/extra income. Check out the www.gov.uk pages for any laws surrounding extra income.
Happy wedding planning!