Friday, October 12, 2012

DO YOUR RESEARCH!

Selections Entertainment has been in business for 3 1/2 years and the main thing we see when we do consultations is people are very surprised on the cost of parties, events, and weddings. Everyone wants to stay on a budget and downsize their party, event and wedding. We hear the famous line all the time"We just want something small". Having something small on a budget still cost. There are always ways to save money but i try my best to give potential clients and clients a heads up on estimated price in each category. Before you contact a planner (hopefully it will be SE :) ) here are a few price ranges in each category. It's always great to save money, be on a budget but remember you get what you pay for! Plan ahead and on a realistic budget to get what you want!

Venues
Venues can be very costly, so depending on how many people you are inviting and expecting be prepared to pay! Depending on if you are having a party wedding, or event, make sure you plan accordingly what size you need, and what is included with venue. Most venues that include food, linens, tables & chairs will cost more. Especially for a wedding. Expect most places to be $2,500 or more. Some venues that don't include food, linens, tables and chairs and you are just renting the space can be $1,000 or less. If you are on a very small budget try community centers and upscale clubhouses that range from $100.00 or $500.00. Most venues require 50% deposits to hold the date so be prepared!

Catering
Catering is a very important part for a wedding, party or event. Many people are scaling down the amount of food they have or the type of food they have but remember it can still be costly. If you are having a small party or networking event, a great selection would be finger food such as sandwiches, fruit, cheese, crackers, and meatballs. Most smaller occasions your goal is not to provide heavy meals. Most caterers will provide finger food trays for $40.00 and up. If you have time and are creative you can put the trays together to save money. For weddings people choose buffet style or platted meals. Platted meals can get costly. Most caterers charge $65.00 & up per person depending on the food selections. Buffet style usually starts at $12.00 per person and most of the time your guest can go back for more! Remember whether the occasion is small or big, food cost!

Cakes/Desserts
We all love this part of the occasion but i hear it all the time: "wow that cake is expensive! Scale down your event or party with cupcakes or cake balls which most bakers can charge starting at $25.00 or more depending on how many you order. Many brides are deciding on cupcakes for their wedding or candy buffets which start at $4.50 per person. If you insist on a cake for your wedding, be realistic on how many people you are inviting so you won't have alot of cake leftover. Most bakers charge $3.00 per slice. Upscale cakes can range from $4.00 & up per slice which does not include decor for cake and delivery. Have a sweet tooth on a budget!

DJ/Band
So many people don't realize the price for great music! A DJ that is diverse, has all the latest music,can communicate with your guest and have that great personality for your occasion will cost you. A professional DJ(not someone you know that does it for a hobby and don't have the right equipment) can start at $400.00 or more. They usually charge by how many hours they will have to be there, setup & take down. Most dj's also charge by the type of occasion. For weddings they can cost alittle more starting with $500.00 or more. Weddings involve more details such as type of songs for bride & groom, parents and other categories. If you want to go a cheaper route some people use ipods or radios with great sound systems(not recommended for a wedding). Who loves that live music? Many of us do and would love to have a band at our occasions but please realize the cost! Each band member has to get paid and bands can start at $1,000 or more. We love the sounds but make sure it's in your budget before you contact a band.

Decor
When you walk into an event, party or wedding, what is the first thing you notice and catches your attention? It's the decor. Remember you get what you pay for! There are so many price ranges for decor. Depending on your style and material and how big the occasion is you can spend hundreds of dollars. Hiring a decor company is the best way to go! Find a company that will fit your budget. Main expenses for decor are linens, which can start at $10.00 and up depending on your material and size. Centerpieces on tables can start at $25.00 and up, more costly items such as decor hanging from ceilings or props can range from $100.00 and up. If you have that niche or passion for decor and you can do it yourself that's great but remember the time and cost for material.

Planner
When people contact a planner most of the time they do not include a planner's fee in their budget!  If a person's budget is $20,000 and the planner is charging $5,000, remember you have $15,000 remaining in your budget! So many people feel they do not need planners for occasions but they are an essential part of the process! From timelines, budgeting, researching, vendor contacts,planning & coordinating, all these services can make or break your occasion. Most planners have so many different packages that can fit your needs from full coordination, partial, or day of. Depending on city and state most packages can range from $500.00or higher.

Photographer
Everyone wants to capture those great memories in a professional way and not with a instant camera! For events and parties photographers usually charge flat fees or hourly depending on the occasion and what they have to capture. They can range from $300.00 or more. For weddings, packages are more involved which can start at $1,100 or more but includes more such as wedding, reception, & bridal portraits.

I hope this has helped you get an idea of the cost for your occasion, We all know while doing your research you can cut corners and have a cheaper budget but many people in today's society don't have a clue on cost for different vendors! Happy hunting to find professions that fit your needs!