I often speak about the wedding day and the things that you should do, how to best save money when planning your wedding and provide advice for just about everything wedding related here in our part of Virginia, but no one really talks about what you should be doing after the fact.
Today, I want to take a little time and talk about the day after your wedding and your honeymoon and what you should be doing and yes, there are some things that you’ll need to do.
The Thank You & Reviews
Sure, you should review your wedding vendors and rightfully so. Reviews are very powerful things that couple read and look for when planning to connect with a vendor and book them. In fact, nearly 92% of couples here in the Roanoke Valley said they use reviews to help make their choices when hiring a wedding vendor, even if it was a word of mouth pick too.
Wedding Reviews in SWVA
From the vendor standpoint reviews help us with making what we do better. Anything less than stellar reviews and we take what’s written and typically want to improve on them. Be sure to be as descriptive as possible so other couples will know we are, be specific and provide specific examples about your own wedding and experiences.
The other thing you want to do is provide ‘thank you’ cards to your wedding guests, especially for those that traveled or purchased you a gift. While it’s not really needed, sending a small thank you in the mail will really connect with the people you asked to come to the wedding day, and it speaks volumes to those you are close with. Additionally, sending out thank-you card is not that expensive, so be sure to take time and do that.
The Financial Talk
Yes, talk about money, insurance and setup a game plan. Listen, now that your married, you need to combine your household and that also means money, taxes and insurance.
If you took out a loan for the wedding in part or in full, have a game plan to pay it off quickly, if needed research Dave Ramsey and look at his debt snowball method of paying off debt, trust me, it works! Other things you’ll want to change include your life and health insurance, car insurance and even homeowners if you have that too.
You'll also want to think about changing beneficiaries. Most newlyweds switch their spouse to their beneficiary on work and life insurance docs. Contact your insurance company and HR department at work for these forms. In addition, think about whose health insurance plan you'll use by comparing cost and treatment options. If you're the one making the switch, make sure the doctors you like are on the new plan.
My point is that you’ll want to take some time no matter what you have, and you’ll want to decide on what to merge, what to keep and what to change regarding your incomes and the like too.
Sell or Donate off Your Stuff
One thing that you’ll want to do is sell off your wedding items. There is a great place on Facebook (I happen to manage it btw) called Roanoke Weddings Something Old Something New and it’s a wonderful local page to buy, sell or trade your wedding items.
Listen, if you want the best thing for the wedding dress, donate it. Yes, donate it. A great 501c3 nonprofit called Brides Against Breast Cancer is a non-profit in Florida that will accept your wedding dress and give you a tax receipt that you can write off at tax time. They travel across the country and have wedding gown shows where brides-to-be pick out these dresses and the money raised goes to finding a cure to treat breast cancer. It’s one of my personal favs within the wedding business and many people don’t know about them here in our part of the state.
The Name Changes
Facebook status and Instagram handle changed: check. Now it's time for those other updates. To officially change your last name, you'll need your original (or certified) marriage license with the raised seal and your new last name on it. It should've been sent automatically, but if not, you can call the clerk's office to track it down. Then do the following:
Change your social security card. Visit the Social Security Administration's website to fill out the application and see where to send it.
Change your license. Head to the local Virginia DMV to get a new license with your new married name—bring every form of identification you can get your hands on, including your new Social Security card.
Change your bank accounts. The fastest way to do this is to go into your local branch with your new driver's license and marriage license. In addition to changing the name attached to your accounts, you should also request new checks and debit and credit cards too.
Change everything else! Once you've changed your social security card and driver's license, everything else should be a piece of cake. Some places may only require a phone call. Make a list (post office, employers/payroll, voter registration office, alumni associations and so on) and notify each organization one by one.