How to buy an engagement ring without going into debt?
So you plan to ask one of the most important questions there is: “Will you marry me?” »
But no man wants to ask the love of his life to marry him empty-handed. Yes… We’re talking about buying an engagement ring and whether you choose the ring together or surprise her with your amazing taste in jewelry or ask her best friend for advice, you need to know your budget. So how much should you spend on an engagement ring?
An engagement ring can be one of the biggest purchases of your life, aside from maybe a house or a car. The average cost of an engagement ring is $5,500.
If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, that’s okay! Take a deep breath, because we’ll teach you how to buy an engagement ring that will make her eyes shine, without going into debt.
But before we get into the details of buying an engagement ring, let’s start with the basics:
Set a budget for the engagement ring
You guessed it, no surprise here! The first step to buying an engagement ring is to be intentional and budget.
One month of your annual income is usually enough to buy a nice ring, but certainly no more than two or three months’ salary. And if you have a family heirloom you’d like to use, great! You can have the stone reset, buy a new diamond, or keep it as is. The options are endless.
Just because you want to buy your girlfriend the perfect ring doesn’t mean you have to go into debt to do it. Yes… We are talking about credit cards, financing or bank loans. Run! Far far away ! We repeat: you do not want to resort to credit or financing.
Pay as much as you budgeted in cash. Why ? Because often, by paying cash, you will get a better deal! There isn’t much that has more markup than jewelry, and paying cash opens the door to negotiation.
Many big box stores or jewelry chains are not known to give discounts. But it never hurts to ask for a percentage off your purchase. Either they will answer you “no way”, or they will surprise you by saying “yes”. Because even jewelry store salespeople know the truth: Cash means money in their hands now, not the possibility of payments in the future.
All payment options like layaway, financing, or jewelry store credit cards are scams, thanks to those ridiculous interest rates. Saving and paying cash will save you a ton of money in the long run! And let’s be real: This ring will be much less sparkling if it has to be paid for for years and years.
How to buy an engagement ring
Okay, now that you’ve figured out your budget for the engagement ring, it’s time to start shopping. We talk about how to buy an engagement ring. Are you ready ? Finding the right engagement ring for your loved one and your budget is going to take time. You don’t want to rush the process. Be sure to do your research!
Remember that buying an engagement ring comes with a lot of questions. But that’s a good thing. So, before you hand over your bundle of cash, let’s see what you need to know to buy an engagement ring:
The 4 important things about diamond rings
You don’t have to be a gemologist, but you’ll get a better deal if you know how to determine the quality of a diamond. The four important things are cut, color, clarity and carat weight.
This is the most important of the four. It refers to the angles of the diamond, not its shape. Cut is how the stone interacts with light, which gives the diamond that beautiful sparkle that we all love. A diamond may have excellent color, clarity and carat but if cut incorrectly it will not have the characteristic sparkle for which it is known.
The color of diamonds is graded on a scale from D (colorless) to Z (light yellow). Although color variations are so subtle that they are practically invisible, they can make a huge difference in price.
No diamond is perfect. But the fewer imperfections a diamond has, the more expensive it is. So keep that in mind when budgeting for your engagement ring. These imperfections can be internal (inclusions) or external (spots). A diamond’s clarity is graded on a scale from “flawless” to “inclusive.”
A heavy stone means a high price. People like round numbers, so you will pay a high price for a 1.00 carat. Save money by choosing a slightly lower weight, for example 0.85-0.95 or 0.65-0.73. The untrained eye cannot tell the difference! Truly ! If you’re really concerned about size, a quality jeweler can always make a diamond look a little bigger by setting and shaping it. The Halo ring is a winner!
What about the shape, frame and ring?
Diamonds can be cut in many different shapes: round, cushion, princess, pear, marquise, oval, emerald… the list goes on. It all depends on the taste of your future bride and your personal budget.
The setting is how the diamond is placed on the ring: solitaire, pavé, halo, channel or tension. Make sure you know what your bride-to-be likes or more importantly dislikes. When in doubt, ask her what she likes, or consult one of her trusted friends if you want to keep it a secret.
Then there is the ring, which can be yellow, rose or white gold, platinum, silver or palladium. As with most things, each metal has its pros and cons. For example, platinum is a bit more expensive than gold, but it’s also more durable. Gold is classic, timeless and easy to polish, but it wears out faster and may require more maintenance i.e. more money over the life of the ring.