Getting Married at a Private Estate | Top 7 Tips To Maximize Your Spending Plan
More and more private locations such as homes, mansions, museums and more are able to be rented for weddings and celebrations, making getting married at a private estate something more attainable as a potential wedding location. Because the average site rental fee for a private estate can rang approximately $10,000-$30,000+, many couples presume that because they are paying a hefty price tag, there are automatically certain items that would be included. At the end of the day, when they get their final invoice are disheartened to learn all the extras that were in their contract, but because they didn’t read it in detail, catch them by surprise and suddenly they must scramble to find more money – sometimes in the thousands of dollars – or make cuts in their current spending plan, taking away from other more valuable areas of the budget and event integrity.
Knowing the top items to look for when negotiating your private estate wedding location will help prevent surprises to your spending plan. Here are our Top 10 Tips to Maximize your Spending Plan when booking your private estate wedding:
1. What equipment is included in the private estate site fee? Many private estate wedding locations have a limited number of tables, chairs and sometimes even décor that are automatically included and will save you money on your rental order.
2. What time can guests start arriving? Don’t presume because you have rented the private estate site from 3-11pm with a 5pm ceremony start time that your guests can arrive as early as 3pm. Or that guests can stay until 11:00pm. Many sites include time for vendors to set up and break down within the time window that you book. If guests arrive early, you will be charged an overtime fee- sometimes around $500 per half hour which can add an unwelcome surprise on your final deposit/payment. Also, the longer guests stay on site past the contracted end time, heavy overtime fees can apply at the end of the evening as well.
3. Is there enough electricity so that all vendors can plug into it (caterer, band, lighting designer and more) or do you need to rent a generator? Not asking this question can result in a power outage at the most inconvenient time, food and beverage not being complete on time and by the time someone is called to bring in the proper equipment to fix it, the event has long since been over, since guests have nothing to do and vendors cannot do their job.
4. What is the requirement for parking? Some private estates require a valet, parking attendant or that guests be shuttled in because no one may park at the venue at all. All of this adds up.
5. What type of liability insurance is required? This can be achieved through taking out a rider on a homeowner’s insurance policy, a renter’s policy or going to sites like WedSafe.com.
6. Are there adequate restroom facilities for guests or do portarestrooms need to be brought in and if so, is there adequate water and electricity for them? The recommendation is one toilet/restroom per 25 guests. Guests’ comfort is paramount and even if the private estate has 4 restrooms for a 200 person event, it is strongly recommend you supplement with VIP portarestroom units to ensure no guest lines, plumbing problems, etc.
7. Is the private estate event representative included in the site fee or is there an additional hourly fee for his/her presence at the event? Hint: this should not be an optional service and if it is, always opt to pay the extra to have the representative onsite to handle any facility emergencies. Neither you, nor your caterer, lighting designer, DJ/Band, etc. will know the private estate as well as the facility/event manager and should there be a need (electrical, water, security, etc), it is crucial to have a representative to handle any issues swiftly.
Above all: read the fine print when booking your private estate wedding location. Every venue is different with different policies and requirements. A professional and experienced professional wedding consultant can help you stay ahead of the curve as can hiring vendors who have worked at the private estate before, as they will be able to tell you what to look for and how to maximize your dream private estate wedding. Need help finding the perfect private estate wedding location? Click here.