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Easy Event Planning: The Do’s and Don’ts of Budgeting Basics

CC Image by Found Animals' Foundation
CC Image by Found Animals’ Foundation

Behind every creative endeavor lies a solid logistical foundation – event planning is no different. It’s very important to have a clear vision and goal for the event; however, these are useless without a budget to keep your expenses organized and in check.

Budgeting is an ongoing duty that needs to be revisited and revised often. In our previous article, Easy Event Planning: The Right Way To Get Started, we briefly touched on budgeting as an important step during the initial planning meetings. In this post we will delve a little deeper to further illuminate the do’s and don’ts of event budgeting.

Let’s get started!

DO discuss the budget early on in the event planning stage. The budget will help your organization set expectations for the event, manage estimates/expenses/payments, and act as an overall guideline for resource allocation.

DOknow your upper spending limit. This sounds basic, but it’s absolutely critical to know this number. If your event happens to be a fundraiser, make sure that you have calculated the “break-even” point so that you do in fact raise funds.

DON’T pick a budgeting tool simply because it’s the latest and greatest event management software application. In many cases simple spreadsheets still do the trick! Consider using Google Docs to make sharing and updating the budget easy and accessible for the entire event planning team.

DO estimate the number of staff needed based on maximum capacity attendance for your event. This can be revised closer to the event, but it’s important to know what your staffing costs will be if you sell out your event.

DON’T wait to update ongoing budget changes. Be sure to track estimates and quotes as they are adjusted, when the costs are finalized and when payments are made. Staying organized will help you stay within budget and (hopefully) reduce some of the event planning stress.

DON’T let expenses go unaccounted for. List them as a miscellaneous expense if they don’t fit into any of your main expense categories. Remember that absolutely every aspect of your event must be budgeted.

DO check to see if your chosen venue requires your organization to provide any additional permits or insurance to host an event. If so, these need to be included in the budget.

CC Image by reynermedia
CC Image by reynermedia

Do you have any budgeting do’s and don’ts that have helped to make event planning easier? We’d love to hear them – drop us a line in the comments below!

Stay tuned for our upcoming How-To post about creating an in-depth, comprehensive budget for your event.



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