Aisle Walking 101: Picking a planner

Not all wedding planners are a good fit for you.
You heard me right. I am a planner myself letting you know that we are all not created equal. We all are so different. Hopefully this article will help you recognize the best planner for you.

Picture courtesy of One Memory At a Time.
Article seen in The Spectrum Neighorhoods section.

Once you get engaged it can be hard to know where to begin planning your wedding. This is where your wedding planner and designer steps in to take your vision and create it so you can relax and know a professional is handling everything.

Choosing which planner to use is a big decision since they will be the one executing your wedding, keeping you on budget, referring other professional vendors and negotiating contracts for you.

Personality is one of the most important things to consider when picking out a wedding planner and designer. You will be spending a lot of time with this individual going over contracts, information and ideas. If you do not feel completely comfortable talking with the planner, this is not a good match for you.

Talking to someone about budgets or family interactions will make the experience uncomfortable and stressful if you feel like you have to withhold information because you do not have a good rapport with your planner.

Make sure the planner you are talking with is accessible. The planner needs to be prompt at answering your phone calls or messages. Making sure they are easy to get a hold of will put your mind at ease if an emergency occurred and you needed to talk with them immediately.

A wedding planner's style will also let you know if this is a good fit. Their style of work can be seen in their portfolio pictures, their office and how they present themselves. Their style will help you know if your wedding will visually turn out the way you want.

Wedding planners will charge either a flat fee for their services or a percentage of the total budget ranging from 15 to 20 percent. Usually a percentage is charged if the overall wedding budget is larger than average.

Read through the planner's contracts to know exactly what you will be getting and what is included in your planner's services for the price you have been quoted. Always sign a written contract to ensure you have a binding agreement of what services you will be getting.

Referrals are another great way to know if you will be working with someone reliable and dependable. You can always ask a planner for references, but know in advance they will usually all be positive because they were given to you by them.

Another way to find references is word of mouth. Start asking around about that planner. Ask friends, family or even other wedding professionals you trust to know if they will be a good fit for you.

Finally, make sure the company you are using is registered, licensed and an insured business. This separates a professional with a person who plans and designs as a hobby.

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