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Picking the Perfect Venue & How to Create a Venue Inventory

Happy Wednesday everyone! With my new journey on breaking my way into the wedding and event planning industry I have decided to create a new series: Wedding Wednesday!! Tune in every Wednesday for a new post about all things weddings! This week I’ll be talking about how to find the perfect venue and how to keep them all organized in one place to ensure the planning process goes as smoothly as possible! Enjoy!

You’ve finished showing off your new bling to your family and friends and your more than ready to start planning for the happiest day of your life. Your wedding day! You want to go ahead and find the perfect location so that you can set the date and start counting down the days till you say ‘I Do’. But you have no idea where to start or how to pick a venue.

It can be hard to choose between a rustic barn or a dreamy ballroom. And then how do you keep track of all the different locations, their prices, and conditions?! This article can help walk you through on picking the perfect venue for your wedding or other event.

Hire a Wedding Planner

At the end of the day, the most seamless way to plan your special day is to work with an event or wedding planner to help give you options and handle to nitty gritty business work. Wedding planners have built an extensive network during their research and experience and most of the time have referrals for venues that they know will be spectacular.

Determine what type of event you want to have?

If you’re going for a classy wedding, a beach location might not be the best. If you’re throwing a birthday party for a 5 year old and all of her friends, maybe a fancy restaurant won’t be the most enjoyable experience. The type of event you want to have can help narrow down your searches to the type of venue you want.

Keep your budget in mind

Nothing hurts more than finding the perfect venue and then realizing it’s $1,000 over your budget. Before having your heart set on a location, determine what your budget will be and if there is any wiggle room with this number. Keep this in mind when calling venue managers and be sure to ask exactly what the expenses cover. You may be getting more than just the location that will make the price worth it!

How many people will be attending your event?

It is also important to keep in mind your anticipated guest list. Some brides will plan their guest list around their venue; however, if you know about how many people you’ll want to invite you can ensure that your location will have room for everyone!

Find a place that fits your aesthetic

When exploring venue websites, take a look at their gallery and see if their set up and design match the general theme you want to go with. Looking for a rustic wedding, a garden or old barn might be perfect! Wanting to live the life of a princess for a night, some cities have gorgeous old castles.

Read Reviews

Planning a wedding can already be stressful and the day of the last thing you want is to have preventable issues arise. Before moving further with a venue, read the reviews online and determine if there are any major red flags.

Ask about insurance policies and security

Your big day is supposed to be special and exciting and the last thing you want to have to worry about it an accident. When talking to venue managers don’t be afraid to ask questions like, what kind of insurance do they have, if they have security or recommend anyone, or what happens if the venue is no longer accessible (i.e structural damage or closure) before the event. It’s always better to plan early!

Tour the Venue

Before booking a venue always tour the location. Ask to walk the grounds and as you do make visuals about how you would like the location set up. If the venue sets up tables, chairs, etc., for you, ask them if you can sketch out a design together. If you can see yourself enjoying your time in the venue, it’s a great contender.

Creating a Venue Inventory

When you’re trying to narrow down your search it can be helpful to create an inventory of all the venues in your area. I like to do this with a simple Excel sheet that lists all the information I need. If you’re an event planner this can be a great reference when helping a bride decide on a venue for the big day. My inventory might look a little something like this:

And if you like things to be physically in front of you, I’ve also created a printable that you can add to your planning binder for quick access to some of your favorite venues! You can access the worksheet here!

Keeping track of all your venues as a planner is crucial in helping to maintain those connections with managers. You never know when networking can come in handy (hint hint: almost always).

Planning your wedding is a fun and exciting time! Having everything organized in one place can help make the process flow perfectly! Happy hunting💕

-Lacey

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