Don't Make These Mistakes When Hiring A Wedding Planner. 5 Best Tips
Wedding planning- what a process. It can be a fun or not so fun time in your engaged life. We want to make sure you are looking for the right person for the best day of your life. Not one of my brides and grooms have said, "Wow that was easy, I definitely didn't need you!" If you just want a "Day of Coordinator" you may get what you are paying for. A months work of help and no insurance to back it up. Yes, there are some great planners that offer those services, but make sure you are not picking the potential vendor just because they offered you a low price. When I began planning I did offer "Day of Services" but I realized I like starting from the very beginning of the engagement and when I looked at the big picture, there were so many things I could shelter brides from doing if I were with them full time. If I had only been there first not last they could have avoided a number of things (overpaying for unnesessary items, heartache with vendors and family etc). With all of the work that goes into planning wouldn't you rather have your planner be in constant regular contact with your vendors and not you. You have a life, job and other things to worry about than every single wedding detail that may not concern you. We enjoy helping you with ALL of the details and logistics. We always say we don't want to take any designing or planning away from you. We just want to steer you in the right direction and with our expertise we plan to show you why you need to go with a full time planner not just a day of coordinator. Here is why hiring a professional is key to your successful wedding not just the entire day but the entire time you are engaged.
Here are 5 tips on how to make sure you make the right choice!
-Do they have a licensed business? Why is this important? You need to make sure it's not just a cute catchy business name and social media profiles with stolen images. They need to be licensed with the state and pay taxes etc. We are an LLC and you can see when we registered.
-Do they have insurance? Why is important? for the big vendors- Photographers, DJ's, Planners, Bakers etc. they all should. WHY? well you don't want to learn the hard way afterwards. We have a million dollar insurance policy in place for emergencies- because they happen, as much as you can pre-plan things do happen. This can help with all the sticky stuff in between like equipment failure, or other accidents and if it's in your name you don't want to be held personally responsible when people are pointing fingers.
-What's their emergency plan? Why is this important? You always need a rain plan/Plan B, if you don't have one you need a new planner. Bad things can happen so who is their person in charge if they can't make it because they got in a car accident or death in the family. They need to give you their back up plan as much as you need to give them a rain plan.
-Who do they know? Why is this important? They should be able to show off a preferred vendor list of qualified insured business owners in their area that they trust and worked with in the past. When booking a planner this needs to be your first big vendor decision, because they should steer you in the right decision with vendors and who will fit your style, budget and personality. Waiting until the end to book us will only cause stress, heartache and most go over budget. Planners help keep you on budget and try to steer you from mistakes they have seen in the past (like ordering too many programs or favors).
-What do their Reviews Say? Why is this important? Reviews on a number of sights, not just one to see what REAL brides have to say. Yes, there is always a crazy one but if most are qualified leads from happy customers then they should be worth booking. Also, they should have qualified references as well that you can can contact.
PLEASE, JUST PLEASE don't go with a planner because of their price. If you want your wedding to be a success make sure you are looking into their business and of course the person they are as well. I make sure to interview my brides as much as they do me. It's a two way street because we share so much time together I want us to agree on most of the ideas moving forward. Since you are with them for this long period of time take in to consideration that they should cost more than other vendors. We understand most people have a budget, but a planner should be 10-15% of your total budget (a realistic one you should stick too). Ask your friends and other people who have been married before for their advice and who they liked to use and why. I can assume you have been to a wedding before and seen what you do and don't want to do as well, so just follow your gut, it's usually right! Make sure you are doing your homework on them and their business because the two should go hand in hand! Happy Shopping!
Photo by Jamie Lucido Photography