Do you ever feel the pressure to purchase the perfect ring for your girlfriend? Are you delaying engagement ring shopping because you think they’re out of your price range?
The average price for an engagement ring is about $6,000 but you can find great bargains online. There’s no reason to stress about ring shopping: we’ve got you covered.
If you’re wondering how much should you spend on an engagement ring, this article’s for you. We’ll give you the inside scoop on finding a perfect ring.
Should You Shop for Rings With Your Girlfriend?
It’s every boyfriend’s dilemma: should you involve your girlfriend in the ring selection? Would you rather the ring be a surprise or would you rather pick one she’s going to love?
One way to approach this question is to have her send you pictures of rings that she likes. There are several different diamond shapes to choose from including:
- Round. These diamonds are perfect circles and are very common.
- Pear. They look like a teardrop and have an elegant flair.
- Princess-Cut. These diamonds are perfectly square and pack a lot of shine.
- Marquise. These look like a cat’s eye or pointed oval.
- Baguette. They look like a thin rectangle but are quite sturdy.
Chances are, your girlfriend will have a list in her head (or maybe on Pinterest) of diamonds that she likes and diamonds that she would never consider wearing.
If you don’t want to shop for rings with your girlfriend, make sure that you know exactly what kind of diamond she prefers. You could also bring her along and have her pick out several rings that she would like. Then you can go back alone and make the final selection.
How to Budget for an Engagement Ring
Once you’ve determined the style of diamond your girlfriend would like, it’s time to set a budget. You may have heard that you should spend at least two months’ salary on a ring, but how much to spend is ultimately up to you.
Ideally, you should spend about two weeks’ salary on an engagement ring. If you save $50 per paycheck for a year, you’ll end up with $1,200 for a ring. If you want to spend more, just set aside an amount that works for you.
Don’t go into debt for a ring, however. If you need to take out a loan, make sure that you’ll be able to pay it back without a problem.
You don’t want to spend your first few years as a married couple struggling under debt from the wedding, honeymoon, and ring.
Some things to keep in mind when you’re looking for an engagement ring:
- You may be able to find an attractive antique ring for a much lower price. You might want to shop at estate sales or auctions to find a classy and affordable ring.
- There are alternatives to diamonds including sapphire, emerald, and even Moissanite, a durable lab-grown gemstone. A snowflake Moissanite ring looks just like a diamond but costs under $1,500 to own.
- If you’re worried about the clarity of your diamond, don’t. You can get rings with small imperfections called “inclusions” for a much cheaper price than a perfect ring. These inclusions are invisible to the naked eye.
- Another way to save money on diamond rings is to buy ones that are a bit smaller than usual. Instead of paying through the nose for a two-carat ring, you may be able to score a great deal on a 1.8-carat ring.
What Should You Engrave Inside of the Ring?
As you consider how much you should spend on a wedding ring, you should also think about the inscription. Some people opt for simplicity: their wedding date and “I will always love you.”
Other options for engraving would include the date you met, the date you got engaged, or even her new married name.
If you have a private joke that is meaningful to both of you, you could get that inscribed in the ring. You might want to stick to more romantic phrases like “Eternity” or “For My Soul Mate.”
Remember, she’s going to wear this ring for years and you want to find an inscription that she’ll love.
Inscribing your ring shouldn’t add too much to the engagement ring cost. Just make sure that you get it done at least one month in advance. If you leave the inscription until the last minute, it may not be done in time for your proposal.
Don’t Hesitate to Shop Online
Once you have a good idea of the kind of ring you’d like to buy, it’s time to check out online deals. You can often get the same ring for a fraction of the cost if you buy it online.
If you’re shopping online, look for stores that have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Before you shell out thousands of dollars for a ring, make sure that the business offers overnight shipping and guaranteed delivery.
You should definitely get your ring delivered to your workplace instead of your home. If it were to be stolen off your front porch by a package thief, your homeowner’s insurance might not cover its replacement.
How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring for a Second Marriage?
If you’re wondering how much should you spend on an engagement ring for a second marriage, the answer is still two weeks’ salary.
Make sure that you involve your girlfriend in the planning stage. You don’t want to accidentally get her a ring that’s the same style as the one she wore during her first marriage.
The same thing goes for the ring’s inscription. It would be disastrous to repeat the same inscription that she had for her first marriage.
You may be nervous about finding the perfect ring, but when you see it, you’ll know it’s the right one.
Now that you know how to shop for an engagement ring, take a look at some more of our blogs! We’ve got insider info and pro tips on everything from fashion to entertainment!