February 7, 2023


The Number One Source For Business

How To Finance A Wedding – Forbes Advisor

If you’re trying to figure out how to pay for a wedding—for you or someone you love—you may want to start saving as soon as possible. The average cost of a wedding in 2019 was almost $34,000, according to the wedding site The Knot.

If you don’t have enough cash on hand, you might think about financing your wedding through a wedding loan. Here’s what it is and when it makes sense to get one.

What Are Wedding Loans?

Wedding loans are a type of personal loan that lets you borrow money and pay for wedding-related costs. This could be anything, like the venue, decor, attire or whatever else you need to pay for.

Personal loans are typically unsecured loans that you can use for anything you need, including a wedding. Terms and interest rates vary based on how much you want to borrow, your creditworthiness and the lender, but rates can range anywhere from about 5.95{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb} to over 35{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb}. Some lenders have loan terms of three or five years, while others have terms upwards of 12 years, depending on how much you borrow.

You can get wedding loans wherever personal loans are available, including banks, credit unions and online lenders.

How Much Money Can You Get With a Wedding Loan?

Since wedding loans are a type of personal loan, you can usually borrow as much as you need to cover all costs for your wedding. But how much you borrow depends on a few factors, including:

  • Your credit score
  • Whether you have a co-borrower
  • Your lender
  • Your income and debt

Some lenders offer loans as low as $1,000, which is a great option if you only need to borrow a little bit to cover a few expenses. Others offer loans of as much as $100,000, which may come in handy if you need to borrow more for other expenses.

When You Should Get a Wedding Loan

Borrowing money to pay for a wedding isn’t something you should do on a whim. It makes sense to get a wedding loan if:

  • You need money right away. Sometimes venues require a percentage of your total cost as a down payment to secure your wedding date. Without it, you might lose your spot. Likewise, dress shops, caterers and other vendors may also require some payment upfront.
  • You have a great credit score. While a good credit score helps you qualify, a great one can give you options with many different lenders. Good credit alone is not enough to justify new debt, but it can make a necessary loan less costly by helping you qualify for a lower interest rate.
  • You can pay it back. Many lenders request proof of income as part of the application process, so you’ll need to prove you can pay back your loan before you borrow. More importantly, though, you shouldn’t take out a loan if you won’t have room in your budget to pay it back.

How to Get a Loan for a Wedding

If you need to borrow money to pay for a wedding, there are a few steps to take before the money hits your account.

1. Check Your Credit Score

Before you apply for a wedding loan, see what lenders will see. Pull your credit report for free at AnnualCreditReport.com. Request to remove any bad marks and report fraud if accounts that aren’t yours are on your report. You can also use your bank or credit card issuer to check your free credit score, or other apps that pull your information from the major credit bureaus. And, if your score isn’t where you’d like it to be, you’ll have time to make improvements before applying for a loan.

Checking your credit score also will give you a good idea of how much loan you’ll be eligible for—and what type of interest rate you can expect. For example, if you have an excellent credit score, you’ll usually qualify for the lowest interest rate available. If you have a good or fair credit score, your interest rate might be a little bit higher. Alternatively, if you don’t have great credit, you may need to ask a co-signer for help qualifying or getting a lower interest.

2. Get Prequalified

Many personal loan lenders let prospective borrowers see if they’re eligible for a loan through prequalification. Prequalification is when you provide some financial information to see if you’re eligible for a loan.

The lender uses this information to decide if you qualify for a loan, and if you do, what your potential terms will be. Getting prequalified is one of the best ways to see what lenders offer. Plus, this process is typically limited to a soft credit inquiry so you can prequalify with many lenders without negatively impacting your credit.

3. Compare Lenders

Use the prequalification option through many different lenders to compare as many offers as possible. Look at a few different factors, like:

  • Interest rates. The lower your interest rate, the less additional cost you’ll pay on top of your principal loan.
  • Fees. Look out for origination fees, late fees, insufficient funds fees and others. Some lenders don’t charge any fees whatsoever, but the qualifications usually require a good or excellent credit score.
  • Terms. A loan term is how long you’ll repay the loan and determines, in part, how much you’ll repay each month. Some lenders have three- and five-year terms, while some offer terms of 10 or 12 years. The longer you take to repay your loans, the more you’ll pay in interest over the life of the loan compared to one with shorter terms. That said, shorter terms mean higher monthly payments.

4. Choose Your Lender and Complete an Application

When you’ve found the best lender for you, it’s time to complete an application. Even if you prequalify for a loan, an application lets lenders check your creditworthiness via a hard credit check. With most lenders, approval can happen the same day you apply, although depending on your lender and circumstances, you might have to answer some follow-up questions or provide additional documents before getting approved.

5. Get Your Money

Funding is different for every lender. Some deposit funds into your account the same day, some within a day or two and others closer to a week. If fast funding is important to you, review how quickly each lender will fund your loan when shopping for the best loans.

Pros and Cons of Wedding Loans


  • Wedding loans are usually unsecured. Secured loans—like auto and home loans—use collateral as leverage. Most personal loans don’t require this. Instead, unsecured loans use your credit score and history to determine your creditworthiness.
  • Interest rates are lower compared to credit cards. Credit card interest rates vary and you could see an APR upwards of 25{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb}, depending on your lender. If you have excellent credit, you can expect interest rates as low as 5.95{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb} with a personal loan.
  • Quick funding when you need it. If you don’t have enough cash to cover some wedding costs right now, a wedding loan can help in the short-term.


  • Extra debt. You may not have enough room in your budget to cover an additional loan payment, especially if you’re already spending more to cover other wedding-related costs. A wedding loan could stretch or even break your budget and should only be taken on if you can afford to repay it.
  • Increased temptation to spend. If you borrow more than you need, you might feel compelled to spend the extra money. Remember, the more you borrow, the more you have to pay back—plus interest.
  • Long repayment terms. While having a five-year loan with low monthly payments sounds helpful in the short-term, this means you could be paying back a wedding loan long after the big day. It also means you’ll pay more in interest over the life of the loan.

Alternatives to Wedding Loans

Wedding loans are one way to pay for a wedding—but they aren’t your only option. Compare these alternatives when making the best choice for you.

Credit Cards

While credit card interest rates are generally higher compared to personal loans, it’s not always the case. If you sign up for a credit card with a 0{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb} APR introductory offer, you could avoid paying interest for a year or longer.

A 0{de3fc13d4eb210e6ea91a63b91641ad51ecf4a1f1306988bf846a537e7024eeb} APR credit card can help you access funds with more favorable terms compared to personal loans, but you’ll need to pay off your card by the end of the introductory period. Keep in mind that you’ll also need to make the minimum payment during the introductory period to stay in good standing.

Home Equity Loan or HELOC

If you own your home, you could take out a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC). These options serve as a type of second mortgage on your home that lets you borrow a loan or take out a line of credit against your home’s equity. However, both use your home as collateral, which means if you don’t make regular payments, you could get a lien on your home and face foreclosure.

Save for a Few Years

It can be tempting to get married as soon as you want, but taking on the extra debt could be a burden as you enter marriage. To avoid this, consider scheduling the wedding for a couple of years out so you can save up before the big day. This way you’ll be able to comfortably afford your non-negotiables, like a dream venue or destination wedding.

Cut Expenses

If you’re ready to get married right away and don’t have time to save, you may want to consider sticking to a lower wedding budget. This can be accomplished by changing the day of the week you’re getting married, reducing the guest list and holding your reception during the day instead of at night.