Buying an engagement ring is a sign that you are ready to take your love and commitment to the relationship to a higher level. You should make sure that you get everything right by getting a special ring and planning a heartfelt proposal. Superficially, buying an engagement ring might not seem challenging. However, as you come close to the rings with different ring sizes, shapes, and prices, you’ll realize that doing some background research is useful, especially when deciding how much you should spend on the engagement ring. This article highlights the average cost, rules to follow, and common myths to ignore when buying an engagement ring.
What Is the Average Cost of Engagement Rings?
Diamond rings, especially the best lab created diamonds, are a serious investment. While there is no exact average amount, surveys of those who’ve bought engagement rings show they spent between $5,000 and $7,500. However, this doesn’t mean you should spend over $5,000 on a diamond engagement ring.
Ideally, the average cost of engagement rings is pushed higher by those willing to spend more. Some even spend above $20,000 on diamond rings. A Morning Consult Survey published by the NY Times shows that the median amount spent on engagement rings is $1,900, with most people spending not more than $3,000.
There is a significant generational gap in the amount spent on engagement rings. Even though the general average is $5,000, millennials, on average, spend $3,000 on engagement rings. Note that these figures provide a guide or ballpark range and shouldn’t be used to guide your purchase. You should consider your financial position and your partner’s expectations rather than focusing on what other people spend.
How to Determine the Budget of Your Engagement Ring
Below are a few factors to consider when shopping and making a budget for an engagement ring:
1. Center Stone Cost vs. Ring Cost
The center stone should account for 75% of your budget. Most popular ring styles cost from $300 and $1,500. If your budget is $3,000, you should consider the contemporary solitaire ring setting and save most of your budget for the center stone. You can change the ring setting later, probably as an anniversary gift.
2. Understand Your Partner’s Expectations
Engagement rings are a symbol of love and commitment. You should do everything possible to meet your partner’s expectations. Unlike the tradition that made buying engagement rings a secret, you can consult your fiancé about their ring expectations. Consider the following to meet your partner’s expectations:
- Color of engagement ring setting
- The shape of the diamond they desire
- Ensure the ring setting matches their preferred style
- Are there family heirlooms or diamonds to include:
If you are uncertain of your partner’s preference and prefer making the purchase a secret, have a friend or close family member help you make a choice.
3. Consider Your Finances
You should think about the forthcoming wedding as you plan the engagement. You shouldn’t splurge all your savings on buying an expensive engagement ring. Ensure that you don’t go into debt purchasing the ring. Make an engagement ring budget based on your income, available savings, monthly expenses, and the cost of ring insurance.
Rules to Consider or Ignore
While you can ignore them, most people use the following to determine how much they should spend on engagement rings:
1) The Salary Rule
If you’ve searched online, you’ve probably come across the three-month salary rule, which states that you should spend the equivalent of your three-month salary on the engagement ring. Some people claim that engagement ring marketers coined this rule to increase sales during World War II. It initially began as a one-month salary before evolving into two and three-month salaries.
Most people consider this rule unrealistic, especially since it is based on gross income instead of net income. While you may be willing to spend much, it isn’t prudent to spend the first few years of your engagement paying off the ring.
2) Using Engagement Ring Calculators
Engagement ring calculators can also be used in deciding how much you should spend. The calculator gives a suggestion based on key details of your income, debt-to-asset ratio, and lifestyle.
You shouldn’t rely on external recommendations when deciding what to spend on an engagement ring. You should prioritize your financial position and partner’s expectations. Consider lab-grown diamond rings if you want a big, quality diamond at an affordable price.
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