February is recognized as National Wedding Month and while this is a happy time, wedding planning can be stressful. Better Business Bureau's Veronica Craker offers tips for soon-to-be newlyweds.
"Two of the biggest issues we hear about are problems with purchasing a wedding dress and contracts with vendors or entertainment not being fulfilled," Craker said.
In 2016, BBB received more than 450 complaints against businesses who specialize solely in the wedding industry. That includes, photographers, officiants, and even cake decorators.
That number does not include businesses who offer additional services, like limousine rentals or catering.
When it comes to choosing a wedding dress, Craker says it's safer to go into a brick and mortar store than shop online.
"In this digital age, it’s not uncommon for brides to order gowns online, that they’ve never seen in person. If they aren't mindful of what company they’re shopping with, they could end up ordering a counterfeit gown, their gown might not be delivered on time, or it might not even show up at all," Craker explained.
BBB urges shoppers to research the company they’re purchasing from. Check their reviews on www.bbb.org, find out their delivery and return policy, and remember if the deal is too good to be true, it probably is.
To be sure other wedding vendors uphold their end of the deal, Craker says get all sales promises in writing.
"That includes specific dates, products, prices, name brands, etc. Make sure all oral agreements are included in the written contract. Don’t be afraid to ask for an itemized contract that lists every single detail and cost quotes. Cancellation policies should also be included. Know what your rights are, should you decide to cancel their services or if the vendor decides they can’t fulfill the order," Craker added.
For more resources to help you protect your identity and money, visit www.bbb.org.