What are the costs involved?
People tend to think that an at-home wedding will be less costly than one at a hotel, club or event facility. Though you will likely save on food and beverage costs, remember that you will have to import everything into your home: tables, chairs, linens, tableware, decor, tents, lighting, restroom trailer and catering staff. Costs for these items can add up in a hurry, not to mention the time and effort on the part of the host and disruption to your household.
Is there enough space available?
Tailor your guest list to the space available. Will the residence comfortably hold all those you wish to invite? Is there room for a band or DJ? If you are planning to use your outdoor space, you will need a rain plan, which can mean putting up a tent. And don’t forget to build into the budget hiring a pest control company to spray for mosquitoes!
Will the weather be a factor?
If you’re using an outdoor space and guests will be on a lawn, in a field, or traversing a country path, make sure to include this on your invitation, so everyone will know to dress for outdoor weather conditions. Consider using phrases like "in the garden" or "in the meadow" to let guests know what is to come. Your invitation should reflect the unique style of your at-home wedding.
How will you capitalize on the uniqueness of the property?
Your vendors (floral designer, rental company, caterer, etc.) must work in concert to produce the look and feel of your wedding. Communication and coordination is the key to success. If the ceremony is also at home, be sure to determine how the ceremony space will transition to usable space for the reception.
How will you handle restrooms?
Guests will search every corner of your home looking for a restroom. If this does not appeal to you, or if you don’t have enough restrooms to accommodate the number of guests, an appropriate-sized, attractive restroom trailer is a must. No matter what, be sure to hire someone to keep restrooms clean and well stocked.
How will the guests get to your home?
If everyone is expected to drive their own car, we recommend hiring a policeman to direct traffic. Or secure the services of a valet company to control the parking. Out-of-town guests will be appreciative if you provide bus transportation from the hotel. You don’t want them to get lost trying to find your house!
Will there be enough liquor on hand?
Since you will be responsible for acquiring the beer, wine and alcohol for the wedding reception, ask your caterer or liquor store professional to recommend appropriate quantities. You don’t want to be caught shorthanded!
Will I need extra insurance?
Advise your insurance agent that you are having a major event at your home. Ask about your existing liability coverage and see if additional coverage is recommended.