By Amy Bradney-George
August 31, 2009
With spring upon us and romance in the air, it's time to start thinking about saving up for that special day.
This time of year has long been popular for both weddings and engagements, and as flowers start budding and birds singing, it's not hard to see why.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) found in a 2007 report, that Spring is the most popular season for nuptials, with about a third of all marriages recorded between September and November.
This report also revealed that the number of registered marriages increased 6.4 percent between 2005 and 2007.
The average cost of weddings in Australia is also on the rise, and Bride to Be magazine's Cost of Love 2008 survey has the average price tag at $49,202 including engagement costs through to the honeymoon.
Despite the high level of spending, it is still easy to have a beautiful wedding on a more conservative budget. The survey showed the average cost of a reception is $10,476 - a sum most people can save in under a year if you set up a savings plan.
Finding the right savings account for a wedding is just as important as finding the right location, celebrant and gown. Shopping around for an account that has good interest, or rewards for regular deposits is a smart way to save and earn a decent return for your big day.
High interest savings accounts like UBank's USaver account, which has interest of 5.11 percent p.a., provides an incentive to keep adding to your savings to watch it grow throughout the year.
Your savings plan for a wedding next Spring might start with $2,000 now, with regular deposits every month up to August next year. If you deposited $1,000 per month, the final amount would be $13,333 including $333 in interest.
The benefits of shopping around for a savings account can mean a big difference to your return. For example, if you chose a savings account with a 2.5 percent p.a. interest rate, and deposited $1,000 per month for the next 11 months with an initial deposit of $2,000 would return total interest of about $155 - more than half of the amount you could have earned with the UBank USaver account.
Starting with a larger deposit amount will help build up your savings and interest earned. For example, an initial amount of $5,000 in the USaver account with the same monthly deposit as the example above, would equal $16,476 for your wedding including $476 of interest earned.
If you compare this scenario with the same deposits to a savings account with a 2.5 percent p.a. interest rate, you could find yourself with a return of about $229 - $247 less than the previous scenario - which doesn't even cover the cost of the average wedding cake ($387 in the Bride to Be survey)!
Comparing interest rates and features is a great way to save up and be rewarded with as much interest as possible. Remember, whether it's an extravagant event with hundreds of people, or a more intimate affair, every dollar counts towards your perfect wedding day.