This morning, I watched a news story on the Today Show. A couple made their final payment to their wedding venue ten days prior to their wedding day. And, 11 minutes after they made their final payment (in cash), the venue informed the couple that they could no longer host their wedding. In fact, 50 weddings were left homeless by this Las Vegas venue.

So, how can a couple protect themself from a situation similar to this? Here are five quick steps you can take to protect yourself as you plan your wedding –

1. Ask specific questions. Don’t be afraid to ask the uncomfortable questions too. We have heard them all before. And, be sure to ask them before you sign the agreement.

2. Get wedding planning insurance.  Here’s a common misconception – “I don’t need wedding planning insurance because my wedding vendors have it.”  This is not true. Your wedding vendors’ insurance covers their services. It is not in place to protect you.  This $300 (average) investment covers the craziest of wedding planning situations.  And, let me tell you thing — If you need it, you will be so glad that you have it.

3. Pay for services with your credit card. Use your credit card for your wedding planning services. If something goes awry, your credit card vendor may be able to help you recoup your money.

4. Thoroughly read your contracts before you sign them. Are you protected if the weather is bad? What happens if your vendor has a family emergency on your wedding day? Make sure this information is noted in the contract. Read the fine print and make sure that everything you verbally agreed upon is in writing.

5. Perform your own background check. Google them. If they are on social media, check out their posts, tweets and/or photos.  Consider searching elsewhere if you see anything that raises a red flag.  Read their reviews. And, ask other brides and other wedding vendors for their feedback of this particular vendor. Finally, check their references.

Bonus —

6. Trust your gut. If that little voice in your head says, “hmmm, wait a minute,” then you should wait a minute. Our creator blessed us with that little voice to protect and guide us.  So, use it!  It will never let you down.

Love & Soul Always, Kay

(Photo: Jason Knauer Photography)