Faced with two daughters getting married within a year of each other, Jacqui Lyons decided to bite the bullet and took out not one but TWO loans worth $30,000.

“I wanted to give both my daughters the best weddings they could have – but weddings are so expensive.’’ she said.

“Initially, I thought I could use my credit card to cover the cost of both weddings. But credit cards can get you into trouble. I did consider banks and with hindsight, interest rates may have been cheaper.

“But I decided to go with SocietyOne as it was easy and I could see the end date – a five year loan.

“I do not have any liabilities or loans. We own our home in Kellyville and both my daughters are contributing to the repayment of the loans,’’ Jacqui said.

When her eldest daughter Ella first decided to get married in December, she took out a $20,000 loan in March last year. When her youngest daughter Demi said she planned to get married in October next year, she took out another $10,000 loan to cover the wedding expenses.

The $20,000 loan has an interest rate of 13.44 per cent pa. This means Jacqui is paying $480 a month over the next five years. The second $10,000 loan has an interest rate of 12.77 per cent pa which is costing her $220 a month over the next five years.

At 57, making a total repayment of $700 a month for the wedding loans was well within her budget as she works as a manager.

So Ella, 28, who works as an executive will marry Fergus at a ceremony held at a park followed by a reception at home in Kellyville for 80 guests.

Demi will marry Nicholas in the Hunter Valley with a homestead, car, photographer all booked and locked in.

“No matter how much you budget, bills do mount up,” said Jacqui. “For instance, Demi’s wedding dress will cost $3000. The photographer alone costs $7000. By the time you add the cost of the food and drinks, venue and dresses for three bridesmaids and suits for the best men, you need a loan to cover everything.”

SocietyOne works out an interest rate depending on the applicant’s history, employment and credit score.

“These personalised interest rates mean the better an applicant’s credit history, the lower their interest rate. In some cases, the interest rate may be lower than what banks offer,’’ said a SocietyOne spokesperson.

Getting hitched? Here’s how to save and still have a big day.

* Don’t get married on a Saturday – you can save thousands of dollars.

* Get married before the start of the peak season. A winter wedding is always cheaper.

* Have your wedding ceremony and reception in the same place – this would save on transporting the bridal party in hired cars.

* Have a reception rather than a sit down dinner

* Choose a venue that does not require much decoration

* Try doing your own flowers or get a friend to organise the floral arrangement. Or don’t have flowers at all. You save hundreds of dollars.

* Offer beer, wine and a signature cocktail instead of a full bar

* Cut the guest list – its far more fun to have a wedding with close friends and relatives.

* Get a friend who is keen on photography to take your wedding photos. A professional photographer usually costs thousands of dollars.

* If you have to provide entertainment, then get a friend to be the DJ

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