Tips to hiring the best wedding vendors

Kate Pararo, A Piece of Cake Event Planning, LLC

As a local event planner and company owner of A Piece of Cake Event Planning, I have worked with a fair share of wedding professionals in the area. It is so important for couples to hire a professional wedding vendors that they can trust and know will provide honest services. Choosing a bad vendor can cause a lot of stress and unnecessary worry on your wedding day. Here are a few tips to help you find the best vendors for your special day.
First and most important are the things to look for when hiring a wedding vendor. You want to hire someone that is competent, reliable and a real professional in their field. Look at their experience, training and recent work. How long have they been in the industry? How many weddings have they personally been a part of, and where and how have they learned their profession? Do you want someone who just started their business or someone that has earned their reputation with years of experience? Another good question to ask is if their profession is their full time work and only job? Do they have other jobs that would pull them from being 100% committed to you? Also, ask yourself if you are impressed by their work.
The first vendor that couples usually hire is their wedding planner. The wedding planner of course will save hours of scouring websites and attending shows to find the perfect venue and the best vendors. They will also help the couple stay on track and not miss any details. However, a full service wedding planner is sometimes not in the budget and if that's the case the couple will need to select their date and venue first. Most event planning companies provide wedding planning package options. With my company we provide three different wedding packages, with some providing more planning involvement then others. A lot of couples just need the weekend of help and that is an option too.
The best way to research potential wedding professionals is to meet with them. Look at their recent work, ask for references and know that a vendor's best reflection of their work is what their past clients had to say about them. A good way to find out more about a vendor is to ask other wedding vendors. Other vendors in the area can be a great resource.
When selecting a vendor, make sure you review their contract and know what items you should see on this contract. Make sure all the who's, what's, when's and how's are covered in any contract you sign. Specifically, look at hours of coverage that will be provided, product details if they are providing supplies, the name of the particular individual that will be providing the service if you have requested someone specifically; any cancellation policy and payment details including due dates and extra fees such as over-time and travel.
Lastly, when selecting your wedding vendors it is important to hire the most reputable vendors. It is a good idea to hire someone that is an organization such as TAWP. Every member of TAWP is license, insured and voted in by the membership. It is important to communicate all the details, timeline, and expectations you have for your wedding with your vendors. Make sure you get everything in writing and have your wedding planner follow up with all wedding details prior to the wedding.
Good luck!