What Is a Wedding Savings Account?

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DEFINITION

A wedding savings account is a bank account designated for saving for your wedding expenses. It usually allows you to earn interest on your deposits.

Definition and Example of a Wedding Savings Account

A wedding savings account is a bank account you open for the purpose of saving for your wedding. You can usually make regular deposits on which you’ll earn compounding interest. When you need the money for wedding expenses, you can withdraw it through various methods.

Credit unions and banks offer several savings account options that can work for your wedding fund. For example, America First Credit Union offers money market and share savings accounts that allow you, your future spouse, and loved ones to contribute money for the wedding. The bank also provides announcement cards for guests.

How Does a Wedding Savings Account Work?

Having a designated wedding account can help reduce the risk that you’ll withdraw funds for other purposes. Therefore, you’ll have a higher chance of meeting your savings goal and relying less on taking on wedding debt. At the same time, you can earn some interest to grow your savings quicker than leaving it in your wallet or a non-interest-bearing checking account. Banks offer interest as an incentive for you, allowing them to use your deposits to lend money to others.

Once you know your wedding budget, you can start putting money in your wedding savings account. For example, you might sign up for your bank’s autosave plan to conveniently stash away a specific amount every couple of weeks or once per month. You could also have your employer directly deposit a portion of each paycheck. Alternatively, you could make deposits whenever you have extra funds or receive cash gifts from friends and family.

Some banks require you to keep a minimum balance in your wedding savings account to avoid paying a monthly fee or to receive a certain interest rate.

As long as you choose an insured financial institution, your wedding savings account will be federally insured up to $250,000 by either the National Credit Union Administration or Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. This coverage applies to each account you hold at a bank or credit union.

Using Your Wedding Savings Account Funds

When you’re ready to use the money for your wedding day, your financial institution should provide multiple ways to withdraw the money. In addition to getting the money from a teller or ATM, you might transfer it to another bank account, such as a checking account.

Keep in mind you can encounter limits on certain transfers and withdrawals. While the Federal Reserve removed the requirement to limit certain withdrawals to six per month in April 2020, your financial institution can still set limits for which you may incur a fee. The number of in-person or ATM transactions are not typically limited; however, fees may apply to convenient transfers and payments made online or by phone.

Types of Wedding Savings Accounts

While some banks have specialty savings accounts for weddings, you’ll more often find general accounts suitable for any savings goal. Your options differ depending on how much interest you can earn, how liquid you’d like the account should be, and which account features you prefer.

Traditional Savings Account

Sometimes referred to as a basic or standard savings account, a traditional savings account usually features a very low interest rate and minimum opening balance requirement. You can easily find this account at credit unions and banks. Fees can be waived or may be minimal as long as you meet any minimum daily balance requirements.

Specialty Savings Account

Some banks offer specialty savings accounts you designate for a particular goal. These accounts may feature very low minimum opening deposit amounts and might not have maintenance fees. You can usually name the account for your wedding and may set a deadline for your savings goal.

Money Market Account

A money market account acts as a hybrid of a checking and savings account. You can get above-average interest rates for your deposits, as well as use a debit card and checks to spend your wedding savings. However, you may need to make a higher minimum opening deposit and meet higher minimum daily balance requirements to avoid fees.

High-Yield Savings Account

A high-yield savings account is a step up from a traditional account since you can get a higher interest rate on your deposits. You can find them by various names through online and brick-and-mortar banks. While it’s common for these accounts to be fee-free, many require minimum balance requirements to forego such charges.

Online Savings Account

An online savings account comes from a bank that usually doesn’t have local branches you can visit. That means you’ll handle most transactions online or by phone, mail, or ATM. You may be able to get a more competitive interest rate than a traditional savings account, and will often pay no fees. Saving through an online bank can help you maximize your wedding savings interest, if you don’t mind the lack of a physical branch.

Certificate of Deposit

A certificate of deposit (CD) allows you to save a lump sum toward your wedding for a specified period of time, usually from six months up to five years. This type of account typically yields a higher interest rate than other options. However, it is often considered the most restrictive option since you usually can’t make additional contributions or remove funds early without penalty. Therefore, it’s more useful if you don’t expect to need to withdraw funds for wedding expenses soon.

A no-penalty CD may be more ideal for a wedding since you can generally access the funds starting on day seven after account opening.

How To Get a Wedding Savings Account

Research multiple financial institutions and their savings account options to determine which works best for your wedding savings. Shop around for interest rates, and weigh the pros and cons of online-only versus brick-and-mortar institutions when it comes to managing and accessing your funds. In addition, research any bank fees required and options for waiving any monthly maintenance charges.

Your bank might waive the monthly fee if you have another account there or receive regular direct deposits in the account.

When opening your account, make sure you have enough money for any minimum opening deposit. You and your future spouse each will need to provide a form of identification during the account opening process.

You can usually complete the application process conveniently through the institution’s website and receive important documents by mail. Otherwise, you can visit a branch to get personal assistance.

Key Takeaways

  • A wedding savings account is a goal-oriented account that allows you to set aside money for your wedding and potentially earn interest.
  • Depending on the financial institution you choose, family and friends may be able to directly contribute to your wedding savings account.
  • Regular savings accounts, certificates of deposit, online savings accounts, money market accounts, and specialty savings accounts are some options available.
  • Deposit and withdrawal options, fees, and minimum dollar requirements for opening the account and maintaining a balance will depend on the type of account you choose.

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Article Sources

  1. America First Credit Union. "Wedding Savings Accounts."

  2. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. "Deposit Insurance."

  3. National Credit Union Administration. "Deposits Are Safe in Federally Insured Credit Unions."

  4. The Federal Reserve. "CA 21-6: Suspension of Regulation D Examination Procedures."

  5. FDIC. “National Rates and Rate Caps.”