Need opinions on wedding venue cost

cayennews

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jul 9, 2009
So here is the deal. I am getting married in August and have decided on a venue. I will be renting a private residence in CT. It is a gorgeous, extremely large home with several bedrooms, amazing outdoor space and an inground pool. Normally the person who owns the home only rents it out to couples, but has agreed to allow me to hold my small (35 people) wedding there. When he rents it to couples he charges $350 per night. I plan to rent the home for 3 nights and have approximately 10 people stay over each night. Plus, have the wedding there, mostly outdoors.

So this is where I need some feedback. He told me that he would not know where to begin to come up with a price for the 3 days and asked me to come up with a price. I have one in mind that I think is fair. I also spoke to my sister and she came up with a number that was way off from mine. When I was researching other places to have my wedding, like museums, most places were going to charge an event fee of $900 - $1000 just for chairs and use of the space.

Keeping his normal per night charge in mind, which is usually for one or two couples at most, what would you consider fair to offer for the three nights and use of the property for the wedding? I am not sure if it matters, but of the 35 people coming to the wedding, about 30 of them are between the ages of 45 and 80. The others are my nieces and nephews.

Thanks in advance for your input!
 

Wishing on a star

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 7, 2002
Okay, I am not posting with any knowledge or experience...
But, just thinking off the top of my head.
If the owner is giving you the opportunity, I would tend to low-ball him.
See how he responds.

From what you have posted... IMHO, $350 a night for the rental of the property described is really low.

So, the event space would be about $1000. for the one day.
Maybe the $1000.00 on top of the $350.00 per night???? ($1350. per night)

I would not start as high as the $350.00 per bedroom for 5 bedrooms, or couples. (which would be $1750 per night)
 

Darcy03231

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 1, 2006
I would say $3000-$4000. DS and his wife just did this last year and they paid $1200 a night for a 6 bedroom/6 bath home.
 
  • barkley

    DIS Veteran<br><font color=orange>If I ever have a
    Joined
    Apr 6, 2004
    just want to make a suggestion that you research noise, curfew, parking, lighting or permit regulations that may be applicable to your stay and planned event. it may seem picky but i've lived in 2 places where it's illegal to rent a private home for these purposes and neighbors will quickly call the police to shut a wedding down. where i live now the county only allows 2 adults per legal bedroom in short term rentals (like air b&b or vrbo's) and exceeding it let along holding a wedding requires a special conditional use permit. again-neighbors eyeball known short term rentals and if they see an excessive number of cars/people-they call the police or fire department to remove them.
     

    luvsJack

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2007
    For wedding itself, will you have to rent chairs or tables or is all of that there for your use? Are you serving food and will it be prepared there and using their items like pots, pans and dishes? Do you need to purchase event insurance or is that included? (Covers the venue for damage and injury to guests).

    We looked at sooo many venues. But two that provided rooms for two nights (night before and night of wedding) were $4500 and $6000. The $6000 one included more items but both had tables, chairs, etc.

    None of the venues we looked at charged by how big/small the wedding was.
     

    sam_gordon

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2010
    What does the $350/night usually cover? Just use of the house? How many bedrooms?

    Who is providing tables/chairs/linen? Who's doing clean up?

    Who is providing the food? Drinks?
     
  • cayennews

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 9, 2009
    Throughout my career as a college administrator I have planned hundreds of events. So the planning part is nothing I am overly stressed about. I will be hiring a caterer that supplies the table linens. I will also be renting some tables and chairs for my guests. I plan to leave the house in the condition it was in when I took possession of it as far as cleanliness.

    The house has 5 bedrooms and 4.5 baths. They are not providing more than the furniture than is already there. The $350 per night usually covers the use of the house. The house is on 5 acres, so it should not disturb the neighbors, but the owner is going to let his neighbors know about the wedding. We have already discussed cars and there should only be about 12, so they will all fit on the very long driveway.

    I will need to look at the outdoor lighting. Since it is an August wedding and we plan to have the ceremony at 2pm, I do not think that lighting will be an issue. Most guests will be gone by 7 or 8pm before it gets dark.

    Thanks for all of the questions and feedback so far. It is all very useful!
     

    TreeFalls

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jun 22, 2016
    For the price, I would structure it as normal cost of $350 per night plus an event fee. Price a couple local venues that provide empty space you can rent for a day, and offer an event fee comparable to that.
     

    sam_gordon

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2010
    For the price, I would structure it as normal cost of $350 per night plus an event fee. Price a couple local venues that provide empty space you can rent for a day, and offer an event fee comparable to that.
    I agree.

    I'm picturing something like VRBO where the per night cost includes however many beds. So if you rent a 5 bedroom house, it's $x regardless of whether every bed is filled or not. Maybe to be nice, offer $400/night, but that would probably be as high as I would offer.
     

    DCLPrincess

    Gone to the Dark Side
    Joined
    Jul 5, 2018
    If he typically rents it for $350 a night then you should pay $1050. If he didn't rent it to you and instead rented it to someone else he would get $350 a night right? Plus you're guaranteeing him 3 nights of rental. Otherwise he might not even have it rented.
     
  • Wishing on a star

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 7, 2002
    Yes, as I mentioned, I would look at it as $350 per night, plus Event fee. (not just $1050.)
    You can rent a room at a nice upscale hotel for $350. per night... That doesn't mean that you get Event Space, etc.

    And, while you have discussed number of guests and cars, etc.
    I would still want to double check the local and neighborhood policies/limitations.
    Policies on renting a home might be different than restrictions on operating a business that hosts "events".

    It doesn't sound like this would be a problem. People can have parties at their homes.
    And, this doesn't sound like this will be an event that would be too disturbing to any neighbors. (hopefully the overnight guests do not have other ideas)
    I would just want to cover all the bases.
     

    sam_gordon

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 26, 2010
    Yes, as I mentioned, I would look at it as $350 per night, plus Event fee. (not just $1050.)
    You can rent a room at a nice upscale hotel for $350. per night... That doesn't mean that you get Event Space, etc.
    While you may not get a conference room, I'm sure you could use other public space. DD had a sleep over at a hotel. DW booked a room and the girls went swimming (event space).

    I don't think a comparison to a hotel is valid. I think comparing it to VRBO, AirB&B, etc is more in line. $350/night in this case gives you the run of the house & grounds. I'm guessing there's nothing saying "don't go on the lawn" or "don't use the pool" or anything like that.
     

    DisneyHardin

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2010
    If the owners are doing nothing more than what they would do for a couple renting it for the weekend, I would probably offer $1500 for the 3 days.
     

    kaytieeldr

    Post hoc, ergo propter hoc
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2005

    Wishing on a star

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 7, 2002
    Katie, (and Lily as well) I did not say, or mean, to offer them basically nothing (like just the usual $350. per night)
    I even mentioned adding in a nice Event Fee.
    Maybe you didn't actually read? (Or maybe just stirring the pot?)

    I would never ever recommend trying to get something for nothiing. Or, more than you pay for.

    I just meant, since the owners seem to be very reasonable in their pricing, and flexible, etc... I would probably start at a lower offer, rather than a high one.
    If you really really want to go after posters who might really want to low-ball, there are those here who have mentioned far less than I did.

    And, if the OP, and the property are in Mass. Then rentals might run quite a bit more than some in FL.
     

    kaytieeldr

    Post hoc, ergo propter hoc
    Joined
    Jun 11, 2005
    Katie, (and Lily as well) I did not say, or mean, to offer them basically nothing (like just the usual $350. per night)
    I even mentioned adding in a nice Event Fee.
    Maybe you didn't actually read? (Or maybe just stirring the pot?)
    Low-ball is sleazy, offensive, and unnecessary. Maybe in the future just write out one's entire thought.
    I would never ever recommend trying to get something for nothiing. Or, more than you pay for.
    Yes, I realize there was nothing indicating getting the venue free. Probably better advice than one-half would have been research and negotiate.
    I just meant, since the owners seem to be very reasonable in their pricing, and flexible, etc... I would probably start at a lower offer, rather than a high one.
    First step is to determine value. Lower offer than what? The nightly rate? The full stay rate? For 2.5 to 5 times as many guests as typical? And then the use of the house, utilities, and facilities?
    If you really really want to go after posters who might really want to low-ball, there are those here who have mentioned far less than I did.
    No other term piqued my anger.
    And, if the OP, and the property are in Mass. Then rentals might run quite a bit more than some in FL.
    Or much less. Or the same. As I pointed out in my response, the link was to give the OP an idea, an informed starting point. I am fully aware the house she's interested in, unlike the houses in that link, is not an event venue.
    https://www.willowdaleestate.com
    http://www.thetrustees.org/places-to-visit/rent-a-venue/
    https://www.historicnewengland.org/visit/property-rentals/eustis-estate/
    https://saphireeventgroup.com/saphire-estate/
     

    lovin'fl

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 7, 2011
    Not really knowing what I am talking about, just what I would feel is a good offer...the $1050 for the 3 nights and $650 for an event fee= $1700. It's almost 5 nights rental so you figure 1 prep day and 1 clean up day plus 3 days stay=5 nights.
     

    Wendy31

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 5, 2005
    Does the owner normally rent it for $350/night/bedroom or $350/night for the entire house?

    I guess I'm a bit confused because I'm not sure why he only ever rents to couples if the house has several bedrooms - so is it like a B & B w/ couples renting the separate bedrooms for $350/night & then sharing the communal areas - kitchen, living room, grounds, pool, etc?

    If he usually rents the entire house for $350/night, then, for your wedding, for the 3 nights & the wedding, I think I might offer $3,000.00.

    $350.00 x 3 = $1,050.00... w/ taxes & cleaning & other miscellaneous fees, then it's probably around $1,500.00 or so for the 3 nights.

    Then, I'd offer an additional $1,000.00 for the wedding event... the extra cars, the extra guests, outside chairs & tables on the lawn, venders coming & going, etc.

    An additional $1,000.00 would equal around $2,500.00, &, then, I'd round up to $3,000.00.

    I'd offer a relatively good amount from the start because I'd want him to stay congenial & generous... especially once the wedding planning & preparations amped up.
     

    _19disnA

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 8, 2018
    I'd be a little leery of renting a venue for a wedding that has never hosted one before. So many other things (as others have mentioned) go into the wedding venue that if they don't have experience with, you could run into a lot of unforeseen problems.
    I agree. Even if the OP says they have hosted some sort of events at college, this is going to be FAR more complex of an undertaking. Planning for an outdoor wedding requires back-up plans in the event of inclement weather on the day of the event. Where will the 35 people gather if the wedding has to move indoors? Even if a large home, meal prep for 35 people requires an industrial sized kitchen or food prepared offsite by the caterer. I think it will be a challenge for the person getting married to also try to be the wedding planner leading up to the event. Setup alone (outdoor tent, lighting, electrical, sound....etc.) could take several days. There is far more to do then just putting out a few tables/chairs. With the wedding planned for August, all of the necessary planning/organizing/logistics could take several months.

    I guess I'm a bit confused because I'm not sure why he only ever rents to couples if the house has several bedrooms - so is it like a B & B w/ couples renting the separate bedrooms for $350/night & then sharing the communal areas - kitchen, living room, grounds, pool, etc?
    I have similar questions. If there a full-time onsite staff who cooks meals/handles cleaning/runs the place.....etc. or is this an empty house when the owner is apparently out of town and rents to individual guests? I assume the owner is gone when renting out the place, but the OP didn't really talk about how all of that works. How will meals work for those 10 who are apparently staying over for 3 nights?

    I would suggest finding a venue that already has experience hosting weddings and then your job will be a LOT easier, including how to determine pricing.
     

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