So, you have this grand idea for a wonderful event or project. You are excited to get everyone on board and all to eager to start the ball rolling. And that’s great! But first, slow down! There’s one thing you should probably consider before diving in head first, and that is your budget. Budgeting is often intimidating to dreamers and planners, so it gets pushed to the back burner. This is the opposite of what should happen. When you have a clear budget in place before the rest of the event is planned, you’ll save yourself a whole lot of stress, believe us. And, to be honest, budgeting isn’t that hard, either. Here are five tips to help you create a budget before the rest of the planning begins.
1. Establish how much you have
You need to know what kind of funds you have to work with right from the get-go. You never want to overspend yourself. So the first step is to find out how much you can spend for this particular project. Write down your preferred figure. How much (or little) would you like to spend on this? Then write down the absolute maximum amount that you can spare. Your costs should land somewhere between these two numbers, and hopefully on the lower end.
2. Write down all necessary costs
The next step is to write down every single cost that will be involved in the project. You will definitely want to go overboard on this. Think of the smallest possible details; don’t leave anything out. Trust me on this, you would rather be over-prepared than under-prepared. So try to put down every single little cost that may possibly arise. You will have plenty to time to cut back later.
3. See how you can gain more funds
If you feel like you are stretching your budget a little bit, try to think of ways that you can raise your funds. You can start a page on one of various online fundraising websites. Or you can create an on-site fundraiser of your own. If you do start fundraising, make sure you are offering your patrons something that will be useful for them. You don’t want to ask for money and give nothing in return. But many people will be glad to provide funds for your project if it is well-explained and well-represented. As you raise funds, make sure you have a helpful, grateful attitude!
4. Find ways to cut costs
If you can cut costs, go for it! But it is important that you do so without cutting corners. Find ways that you can lower the figures in your cost column without skipping out on things you really should have. Try to find ways that you can buy less of something. Or do some extra research to find items that you can buy more inexpensively than you originally thought. Make the best of sales when you can. All of this will take a little work, but in the end, it is definitely worth it.
5. Get feedback and double-check to make sure everything lines up
Creating a budget is definitely not a one-person job, it requires teamwork. It is helpful to have at least two or three people working on the budget at once. And when it is complete, it is definitely a good idea to have a fresh pair of eyes run things over to make sure everything is cool. Not saying that you won’t do things right, but it is always important to have more than one perspective. Another person can also help you assess whether or not your budget is realistic, whether or not you can add or subtract various costs, and point out any errors that may have crept in.
Planning a big event or project definitely takes some strategy. If you have any concerns or questions, or if you are simply feeling overwhelmed and need some help, check out our website and shoot us a quick message. We are always on call and would be happy to help you!