Tuesday, March 06, 2007

TIP: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is


While you are working out every important detail of your big day (Tall centerpieces or short? Write our own vows or use the traditional ones? Band or DJ? yada, yada, yada...), I don't want you to overlook a very important detail: what do you plan on doing with all of those checks/cash gifts you get after you say "I do"?

I don't mean are you investing in a Money Market account or buying a 6 month CD, I'm talking about something much more immediate: who's going to take care of depositing your checks if you're leaving right away for your honeymoon?

In various parts of the country and for various ethnic groups, cash gifts are a big part of the wedding process. Mr. Beetle and I knew that we'd be getting quite a few "envelopes" on the night of our wedding and we wanted to be prepared. We were jetting off to Europe on the following Monday and we needed an action plan.

After researching the situation, we discovered that Washington Mutual has branches in both New York and California (where we were getting married). A week or so before the wedding, we opened an account at Wamu, for the express reason that we would be able to endorse and deposit all of our checks in Cali, before we left on our honeymoon to Italy. We did not want the worry and hassle of waiting the two weeks until we returned, and quite frankly, did not feel comfortable totaling up the checks and giving them to another family member to deposit for us (yep, we wanted a bit of privacy in this area).

Have you come up with a wedding night/money gameplan?

Here are a few tips:
*Designate someone as the "envelope guy" or gal. Anytime someone hands you a gift, you can pass them along to this person to keep safe.

*Keep track of EVERYTHING! Before you deposit a single check, make sure you've made a careful list of who gave what. Keep your envelopes and cards, just in case--they might be helpful if you need to put together any "who gave us this?" puzzles later on.

*Do you have a joint account? Almost all your checks will be written out to "Mr. & Mrs....." and you want to make sure you and your husband have a joint bank account in place so you can deposit all your dough.

*If you are leaving for your honeymoon on a weekend, ask someone you trust ahead of time to deposit your checks for you. If not, leave time in the morning to hit up the bank yourselves before you jet off on your honeymoon.

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