Congratulations! You said yes and now, it’s time for the wedding planning fun to begin.

The excitement from the engagement is still soaking in, but already you’re probably wondering, “am I cut out for this?”

On the surface, wedding planning might look easy. This is your day and you’re entitled to do only what you want and nothing else. Still, what you want is perfection. You want the personal touches that make the day about you as a couple. You want the decor to tell your story and the ceremony to honor your commitment.

So, it’s time to get honest with yourself.

  1. Do you have time management and organizational skills? Or is this a challenge for you?

  2. Do you have a fulltime job or career that eats up your time during the workweek?

  3. Does decision making leave you stressed or overwhelmed?

  4. Do you want a big wedding with lots of guests? Or a complex wedding with multiple venues for the ceremony and reception?

  5. Do you have a solid crew of experienced planners in your wedding party to help you nail down all of the details?

  6. Could your wedding budget be as high as a down payment on your first house?

  7. Do your friends regularly lean on you to plan, organize, and host parties? Or are you the last one to have large gatherings at your house?

The answers to these questions are telling. They’re foreshadowing what’s ahead for you in the coming months or years as you plan the perfect day.

Hiring a wedding planner isn’t right for everyone. Based on your answers, you can determine whether it’s a smart move for you, or if you’re better off planning your wedding on your own.

Here are seven signs you might want to hire a wedding planner.

1. You Hate Organization

If spreadsheets make your headspin and checklists leave you feeling drained at first glance, wedding planning isn’t for you.

Planning a wedding requires an immense amount of time management and organizational skills. There are binders and budgets to manage, and timelines to track. Fall behind schedule and you’re instantly at risk of falling victim to the type of stress that’ll cause you to lose sleep until the day you say, “I do.”

The stress of wedding planning will mark your lives as a couple forever. You don’t want the memories of your wedding to be filled with short fuses and snappy fights. It’s enough to make couples throw up their hands and decide to elope instead of having the celebration and ceremony of their dreams.

A wedding planner can help you avoid that while keeping your newlywed bliss intact.

2. You’re Already Buried at Work

Unless you have the coolest boss on earth who will let you plan your wedding at the company’s expense, you’re in for a hard battle. Negotiating with the caterer, meeting with the florist, planning the music, scoping out venues and bridesmaids dresses, etc. These critical tasks all happen when you’re at work.

What if you could have someone handle all these details for you so you can keep your job without ruffling your boss’s feathers?

That’s where a wedding planner comes in. You don’t need to add more meetings to your already full calendar. Instead, meet with one person when necessary and the rest will be handled for you. What a relief!

3. Decision Making Stresses You Out

Take a look at the details of your big day and you’ll instantly see how many decisions you’re going to have to make. Color palettes, first dance songs, types of flowers, bridesmaid dress styles, the list goes on.

Having a wedding planner guide you through this seemingly endless list of decisions is a tremendous help. The key here is to hire a wedding planner that you feel a strong connection with so that the decisions can be made for you with your input but without the stress that goes along with the decision making process.

Look for a wedding planner that has personality traits you admire. It’s helpful to have someone who’s a great listener, effective negotiator, a problem solver by nature, and respectful of your individual ideas/suggestions. The perfect planner will work hard to represent you without criticism or critique. Find this and you’ll work with someone you can trust to make decisions that reflect your best interests and personality.  

4. You’re Planning an Outdoor or a Complex Wedding

It cannot be stated enough how complex it is to have an outdoor wedding. Pictures can be ruined by a tent in the background. The lighting can make or break the way you appear. Weather is a concern. Catering is a concern.

No matter how exceptional your wedding planner is, these factors will continue to remain a concern. However, with the right design, choosing of the right final products, and a laser focus on the details, these concerns can fade to the background on wedding day. Give them to a wedding planner so you can create lifelong memories without worry about a tent or cloud ruining your big day.

5. You’re Planning to Lean on Your Friends and Family to Help Quite a Bit

In my experience, I’ve found that it’s more expensive to have your friends, family members, and yourself exhausted by wedding planning than it is to hire a wedding planner. That’s because the costs you pay for burning out yourself and your closest allies in the wedding planning process are more expensive than dollars and cents. The price you pay is lifelong relationships, happiness, and enthusiasm for what you’re celebrating.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m completely supportive of having help from friends and family. However, it’s important to make sure these people live closely enough and want to provide you with real assistance. Don’t assume they can make an extra trip up to plan your wedding with you. Your wedding party is there to support you during the wedding preparations, but leaving them with all the responsibility that a wedding planner will take on is a mistake that could haunt you for years.

Burn out your wedding planner instead and save the wedding moments for the times that are truly joyous, such as when you’re sipping champagne while trying on dresses, or indulging in an excuse to eat some delicious wedding cake. Those are the times that are fun. The errand running, decision making, and budget negotiations? Not so much. Give those over to a wedding planner and save your closest relationships from strain.

6. You’re Working on a Healthy, but Tight Budget

Ever notice how some vendors (florists, caterers, venues, etc.) put the word “wedding” in front of something and suddenly the price doubles? Me too.

Weddings are expensive. If you’re budgeting enough money for your wedding that’s equivalent to the amount you’d pay on a down payment on your first home, it’s important to have a wedding planner keep that budget from exploding.

Without proper advice and negotiating skills, you could end up spending more money on lower quality vendors. Having someone on your side who has a strong relationship with vendors in your area will help you get the best deals on every aspect of your big day.

7. You Want to Create Lasting Memories Without the Stress

Party planning might not be your strong suit but that doesn’t mean you can’t create a wedding that leaves your friends talking for years to come. Building an event that leads to lasting memories isn’t easy. If you don’t do it with small scale events, such as game nights at your house or dinner parties, chances are you won’t be able to effortlessly do it on a larger scale with something as big as a wedding.

There’s no amount of money after the event that you can spend to recreate experiences. You get one shot at it. A wedding planner can help you do it right.

Instead of focusing on (and stressing about) the details, you can spend your wedding creating memories with your friends and family that’ll last you a lifetime. You’ll wake up the next morning excited about the way you and your spouse started your future together. You’ll have stories to tell your children. You’ll feel excited about your entrance into matrimony instead of relieved that the day is finally over.

So, Is a Wedding Planner Right for You?

Not every couple needs a wedding planner. If you love to plan events, aren’t limited by your career, have a large wedding party who lives close by and wants to help with the details, and are excited by the details and decisions that go into wedding planning, you don’t need to hire someone to help.

But, if you want the perfect wedding day without the unhealthy amount of stress that typically goes along with planning such an important event, having someone who has gone through the formal training and gotten certified, is important.

Make sure you do your homework and interview several wedding planners before making your decision. Remember, you need someone on your side who you feel comfortable with to make your big decisions when you’re not around or just don’t want to worry about another detail. You need someone you relate to and you can trust. Find this and you will be certain to have the wedding day of your dreams.

Happy planning!