As a 24-year old female, I can admit to loving Pinterest. I have enough meals pinned to category-specific boards to get me through dinner for the next 30 years and I patiently wait for the outfits I find to magically appear in my closet.
As a wedding planner, I can admit to my love-hate relationship with Pinterest. Do I use it professionally? Absolutely. As a business-owner, it's a visual marketing tool and as a professional in a creative industry it serves as inspiration. But here's the thing about Pinterest ... it can be deceiving and if you are planning your wedding there are some things that you need to know.
Pinterest is a great tool for finding inspiration. I work with plenty of couples who aren't 100% sure how to label their style or who have different styles and want to make both work together and when they show me their Pinterest boards it provides me with insight into their overall vision so that I can create a custom design plan for them.
If you are using Pinterest to help you with your wedding day vision, make sure that you aren't confusing inspiration with copying. Professionals won't want to copy the work of another, and want to create something that is uniquely yours. Do you want your guests to walk into the room and say "WOW! This is beautiful and is so them" or "Oh, cute! I saw this on Pinterest!".
Wedding Planner Pinterest Tip: Show professionals your favorite Pinterest photographs and share with them the reasons why you love it. They'll be able to create something that embodies those things while also showcasing your personality.
Since Pinterest is known for its DIY nature, many people figure that if they see a photograph of a wedding project that they can do it themselves. While there are plenty of DIY projects available on the site and lots of crafty individuals, you need to think about each one before committing to it.
There are some beautiful DIY decorations and really cute favors that you can put together, but will you have the time to craft 175 of them? I've worked with plenty of brides who admitted to feeling a bit in over their heads with the projects that they committed to creating on their own for their wedding day.
Wedding Planner Pinterest Tip: Commit to one or two DIY projects, and leave the rest to the professionals.
I have my couples show me their Pinterest boards to get a better idea of the vibe and vision that they are going for. When doing this, I'm almost always shown photographs of projects that are out of their budget. Pinterest does not equal a small price tag.
The trouble with Pinterest is that it can be a bit deceiving if you aren't familiar with the industry. More often than not, the price tag of the wedding isn't part of the caption or hyperlink.
Wedding Planner Pinterest Tip: Set a budget right from the start so that you can communicate with your team how it will get distributed. Just like with the inspiration, your professionals will be able to create something just as beautiful in your price range.
Pinterest is a fabulous tool; however, it is important to be aware of how to use it so that you don't feel discouraged or overwhelmed as you plan. Keeping these inspiration, realistic expectations and cost in mind you'll be able to use Pinterest like a wedding planner!
House Hunting & Wedding Planning: An Interview with Philadelphia Realtor, Michelle McClennen
For many couples, wedding planning isn't the only task on hand while they are engaged ... many are also looking to purchase a home together. I've interviewed local realtor, Michelle McClennen to make the process a bit easier and less daunting.
First things first, do you work within a specific area in Pennsylvania?
"As a licensed realtor, my territory includes: Montgomery County, Bucks County and Chester County. I will assist clients who are looking at homes that are within an hour from my office since I have the best idea of what those areas are like and what is happening in their market. It is very important to me as a realtor to be familiar with the area that I'm taking my clients to. If they have questions, I want to make sure that I'm able to educate them and to help them decide if it's a community that they would enjoy calling home.
What would you say is one of the biggest misconceptions that first time homebuyers have?
The biggest misconception that first time homebuyers have is being pre-approved for a mortgage! The majority of buyers think that getting pre-approved means they have to commit to purchasing a home right away, which is not correct. Getting approved at least 6 months in advance lets you know what your financial status is, the amount that you'll be able to borrow to purchase a home and the best loan type for their situation which allows them to develop a financial plan. If there are issues, it allows you to rebuild your credit and save money. It happens all the time, buyers wait until they think they are ready and when they find out they have problems with their credit they didn't know about or didn't have enough money saved up, they then have to wait another 6 months after they truly wanted to begin house hunting. Get pre-approve early- it's free!
Any advice for couples who are planning their wedding but also want to purchase a home?
A piece of advice that I have for my clients who are getting married as well as buying a home at the same time is to stay organized! When couples are going through two major life changing events simultaneously a lot of stress and frustration is created which shifts the focus from organization. Therefore, I help them to create and action plan which includes preparing necessary documents, having our house hunting time organized and helping them to see the potential in each home. If you are not organized or focused when house hunting, the process will take much longer and you'll have a harder time picking "The One"!
Why would it benefit a couple to work with a realtor?
There are so many benefits to working with a realtor especially in the beginning stages vs. searching for homes on your own. 90% of prospective buyers start shopping online first before they find their realtor, but that can actually delay your process because you could be searching for homes that you are not sure that you can afford! Having a realtor will help you to focus on what your needs and wants are, they would put you in touch with a Loan Officer early so know the price point that you should stay in, and they are familiar with local communities and will be able to see new listings hitting the market instantly vs. the online sites that have endless errors and delays.