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Planning Home Weddings

Advice on having a wedding celebration at home and tips on outdoor home weddings

Also see outdoor wedding supplies, decorations for outdoor weddings and wedding reception centerpieces

home wedding, planning home weddings, wedding at home

Having your wedding at home can be one of the most memorable and special experiences of your life.  But if you don’t plan ahead, a wedding celebration at home can be one of the most stressful experiences. 

No matter what the size of your home is or what kind of condition it’s in, your home is probably not ready to accommodate the hundred or so guests that will be coming to your home wedding.

Home weddings are typically more personal than other types of weddings.  And though they’re often smaller events, wedding celebrations at home can be more expensive than other types of weddings due to the cost of rentals, permits, decorations and staff. 

Planning home weddings requires more organization and potentially more elements (like a permit for any outdoor tents) than other weddings – especially if you’re having an outdoor home wedding. 

You may be overwhelmed at first, but once you have a few tips to work from, you’ll feel more organized in planning your home wedding.  And while it may be more work on the planning side, home weddings are well worth the effort because well, there’s no place like home.

Tips For Planning Home Weddings

To get prepared, read on and we’ll go over our top tips for planning home weddings.  With this advice, you’ll be on your way to creating a beautiful and stress free wedding celebration at home.

Consider the Guest List for Your Home Wedding

home wedding, wedding at home, planning home weddingsOne of the first elements of planning a home wedding is for you to determine how many people will fit comfortably in your home.

If your guest list has over 50 names on it, bring in your wedding planner or caterer to help you access how many people you can reasonably have. 

Remember that even if you’re having an outdoor home wedding on the lawn, you may need to move everyone indoors in the event of inclement weather.

Get the Right Rentals for Home Weddings

When you rent a venue for your wedding ceremony and reception, typically the venue will have tables, chairs, a dance floor, sound system, etc. included in the cost of the rental.  For wedding celebrations at home (outdoor home weddings in particular) you’ll need to rent quite a few items.  A couple of the things that you may need to rent are: a tent (with a dance floor), tables, chairs, table linens, dinnerware, napkins, barware, a generator and portable restrooms.

Talk to your caterer to see if they can provide some of the rental items.  Table linens and napkins are often part of your catering cost. 

Even if your home is equipped with 2 or 3 restrooms, you’ll probably still need to rent portable bathrooms for your wedding celebration.  One restroom for every 35 guests should be adequate.  Instead of basic port-a-potties, rent upscale restrooms with lights and sinks for guests to wash their hands

Parking for Your Wedding Celebration at Home

You can’t expect all of your wedding guests to find parking in your neighborhood, so you’ll need to hire parking valets for your home wedding.  Make sure that you not only hire valets but also determine where the cars will be parked.  You don’t want to annoy your neighbors by blocking their driveways. 

If your guest list is very large, check out the area around your home and use a school or church parking lot.  You can give guests directions to the lot and then use a shuttle to transport guests back and forth to the wedding location.  If you are very near a parking lot, the parking valets can use it to store the cars.  Just get the proper authorization in advance to use the lot.

File Your Wedding Permits

You’ll need to check with your local government about what kind of licensing fees and permits you will need to take care of.  No matter where you live, if you’re erecting a large party tent for an outdoor home wedding, there’s a good chance that you’ll need to get a permit.  You may also need to get a permit in order to valet the cars for wedding guests and you should check your local regulations regarding noise as well.  Permits and fees differ depending where you live, but make sure to leave room for them in your wedding budget.

Take Care of Your Home’s Yard

If you’re having an outdoor home wedding or part of your wedding ceremony or reception will take place outside, you’ll need to make sure your yard looks nice.  This may mean putting down new sod or planting some new shrubs. 

If you have green, full grass, you may also want to consider what putting a tent and a dance floor on your yard will do.  After the wedding, your grass may be yellow or damaged in some places. 

Another concern for outdoor home weddings is bugs.  Use fans, citronella candles or insecticide spray if mosquitoes and flies are prevalent in your area.  You don’t want pests bothering your guests.

Insurance for Weddings at Home

To protect yourself from everything from guest injuries to damage to your home, consider getting additional insurance for your home wedding.  Keep in mind that you need the same type of insurance that a wedding reception site would.  Check your homeowner’s insurance to see what it covers, then you may want to get a supplemental policy for the wedding.  The security of having insurance will ensure that a simple accident won’t put a damper on your wedding day.