You know the saying: first love, then marriage, then … mortgage? As much as we want to have it all – all at once – most young couples cannot afford a big luxury wedding or a down payment on a house. When faced with a choice between two, weddings usually won; But that all changed last year during the pandemic. Many couples who had to postpone their wedding found an unexpected positive: they could instead invest that money in buying a home.
COVID not only changed our plans, but also changed many of our priorities. As a result, the pressure and anticipation of a big, chic wedding has officially ended. Escapes and small parties are more popular than ever as couples realize they can eat their cake (get married) and eat it (buy a house) if they skip the full-blown events they’ve dreamed of in the past. I think this is a pretty smart idea. That’s why.
1. The pandemic is not over yet.
The number of vaccinated Americans is on the rise and the rules regarding group gatherings are being relaxed, but we’re not quite out of the woods yet. People are still nervous about scheduling (and attending) big events. A traditional full-blown celebration could be met with mixed feelings and mixed responses. Plus, let’s face it: posting photos of a large and expensive event won’t get the usual praise and attention on social media. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be successful on your wedding day! But in today’s social and economic climate, many couples decide that it still makes sense to run away or arrange a more modest meeting. Both options are easier to plan, more intimate, and cost MUCH less money – which means couples can get married but still have the money to buy a home.
2. Traveling is difficult.
Travel bans are still in effect, as well as new COVID variants causing blockages in other countries, meaning there are no international guests or local weddings. You will have to kiss this fantasy of a castle wedding in Scotland or a vineyard wedding in Tuscany goodbye. Even if you get married in the States, the chances of Aunt Amelie flying in from her home in France or your fiancé’s parents flying in from London are slim. This is a much better time to focus on moving, decorating, and arranging a new home than planning an event that requires people to travel.
3. Buying a home is the new Flex.
Remember what I said about posting wedding photos on social media? Well, posting your new home on social media won’t require anyone to write a check, wear an unflattering bridesmaid dress, or break any CDC rules. In fact, buying a home together sends the same message as a wedding: I’m happy, I’m doing well, and I’ve reached one of the most important milestones in my life.
4. ROI makes more sense.
A grand wedding this night can be fun, but the next day, when you wake up in the same little apartment with five food processors to return and a credit card debt, it isn’t. On the other hand, a home is a valuable asset that you can count on and enjoy every day for years to come. So while the market is still active, mortgage rates are still low, and COVID is still circulating, investing in a high-priced wedding just doesn’t sound as smart as investing in a home – we now know the value of it more than ever.
So, congratulations to all engaged couples who have decided to postpone, cancel or shorten their wedding and buy a house instead! You have made a difficult but intelligent decision.