How to avoid losing money on a wedding...
I am a frequent visitor to this forum and more often then I'd like I see people who have lost deposits/money when their supplier/dress shop/wedding venue goes bust.
I work in financial services and have some experience in these matters and wanted to offer some guidance, as well as invite anyone else to add their own advice!
MASSIVE DISCLAIMER THIS ADVICE IS MY OWN OPINION AND YOU SHOULD SEEK YOUR OWN FINANCIAL ADVICE IF YOU NEED TO!!
1. GET INSURANCE
I can't stress this enough. It should be the first thing you do, after saying yes to the proposal! Insurance is relatively cheap, you can apply online and a lot of policies cover against suppliers being unable or unwilling to fulfil their contract.
2. Pay on a credit card
Ok hear me out - I'm not suggesting racking up a load of debt for what is essentially a fancy party, however by paying for the wedding on a credit card you are protected under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act which essentially means the credit card provider should refund you should the contract you made with your supplier be broken. I paid for every tiny thing on my credit card and then immediately paid the debt off from my savings meaning I didn't have debt but still had the protection.The scheme covers payments from £100 to £30,000.
3. Be aware of the chargeback scheme
If you have paid by debit card and something goes wrong and you are entitled to a refund, you can claim for the amount you paid by card, however it must be within 120 days from date you paid for the service. This isn't always useful if you've paid deposits but worth bearing in mind.
4. Collect your dress promptly
You've had your fittings, paid in full and your dress is sat in its bag in the shop waiting to be collected. Why would you leave it there? Collect it ASAP. If the worse happens and the shop goes bust with your dress inside then it's likely you would get it back, however who wants the stress of trying to identify your dress in a sea of white gowns when you have a million other wedding stresses to worry about?
5. Use Interest Free
If you are relying on credit to finance your wedding, and that's perfectly fine, at least make sure your credit card offers 0% interest on purchases for a good few months so you can use it as an interest free loan. This can be a sensible way of managing wedding debt without adding to it by way of interest payments.
6. What to do if a supplier goes bust
Liquidation, administration, bankruptcy - not words you want to hear when planning a wedding! Firstly, don't panic. Secondly, check the companies websites/social media or the correspondence from the insolvency firm dealing with it as it is fairly common for third party businesses to take over and continue offering services/honouring contracts. Failing that ring round other local suppliers to see whether they can offer anything last minute.
I hope this is helpful and not too patronising, please tell me if it is! Also feel free to advice you think iIve missed!