Goodbye, 3 Month Rule: How Much Should An Engagement Ring Cost?
June 1, 2023
Of all the engagement ring questions we get, some of the most common are related to price. Every customer wonders how much they should spend on their ring–you don’t want to overspend, but you also don’t want to skimp on one of the most important purchases you’ll ever make. There are plenty of so-called 'engagement ring rules,' misconceptions and myths floating around. As your local jewelry experts, we created this guide to help you make the best decision.
Don’t Worry About The 3 Month Rule
First, we want to clear up a common engagement ring myth.
Many will reference the ‘3 month rule’ when engagement ring shopping. This rule recommends saving three months' pay to set your budget for an engagement ring. While this is a nice way to avoid overspending relative to your income, it’s a bit of an old fashioned concept. At the end of the day, it’s an arbitrary amount, and it doesn’t always mean you’ll get the best value for your money. The best way to decide what to pay for your engagement ring should be based on what you want from your engagement ring. Start with your ideal ring and use that to construct your budget.
The Average Price of an Engagement Ring
According to a recent jewelry and engagement study, the average engagement ring costs around $6,000. However, that doesn’t mean you need to spend at least $6,000 dollars to get a great ring–and it doesn’t mean that spending more than $6,000 will guarantee a better ring.
Simply put, price isn’t always the best measure of ring quality. Beyond the physical quality of the ring, price also has little to do with personal satisfaction. In short, when you find your perfect engagement ring, the price tag won’t matter as much as how much it means to you.
However, when looking for a good rule of thumb, or a basic budget to build around, $6000 isn’t a bad place to start if your income can support it. Our recommendation is to budget around your income, and save over a period of time so that the ring purchase is a comfortable and enjoyable experience. At Dean’s, we specialize in finding the perfect ring for every budget, so don’t let these averages deter you from coming to chat with us!
One of the best ways to narrow in your personal ring shopping budget is to learn more about the type of ring you want to get. Decide on your material and diamond size and you can get a better idea of your personal budget. Of course that means learning a bit about how much to pay for different diamond sizes and ring materials.
How Much Do Diamonds Really Cost?
For those outside the industry, it can be difficult to understand how diamonds are priced. To summarize as best we can, diamonds are categorized by their color, cut, clarity, and carat weight. This is why many newbie ring shoppers looking for a one carat or two carat diamond are shocked to find out the variance in price between those categories. Depending on the other three C’s (color, cut, and clarity) the price of individual diamonds, even those of similar sizes, can vary quite a bit!
So what is a good, average 1 carat diamond ring price? For a quality 1 carat natural diamond, you may spend between $4,500- $7,000. When it comes to a 2 carat diamond ring price, you can expect to spend closer to $8,000-$10,000 on a quality natural stone. This is assuming quite a bit, but should still help you get an idea of what to spend on your ring.
People often ask what a $2000 engagement ring, a $3000 engagement ring or a $5000 engagement ring will look like. The truth is, it's impossible to say, as there are so many variations between diamonds and styles that two rings at the same price point may look completely different from one another. Our best advice is to visit your local jeweler and talk to them about the various styles they carry within your budget.
Knowing what to spend on your diamond should help you build a more realistic budget for your engagement ring.
How To Buy an Engagement Ring on a Budget
Now that we’ve discussed some methods for setting a ring budget, let’s put them into action. Take a look at your yearly expected income and find something realistic for you. Then calculate an amount based on your income that you’d be comfortable saving every paycheck. Start putting that money away towards your total goal. With your total ring budget decided, you can start looking at some specifics for your dream ring.
Remember, you can trade off certain aspects of your diamond for others in order to help get the perfect stone on a budget. You can look for diamonds with slight inclusions, colorations, or other minor ‘flaws.’ The truth is, many of these flaws are quite hard to perceive with the human eye. They are still high quality diamonds, and in fact, you might find that those tiny quirks make them more unique or appealing. Mother Nature may be imperfect, but that’s part of her beauty.
Our final piece of advice is to never sacrifice quality for your budget. Many jewelers have financing options available to help you extend your financial horizon to get the best ring for your budget.
Should I Insure My Engagement Ring?
Yes! This one is a no-brainer: engagement ring insurance is a great way to protect such an important purchase. In the unfortunate case that your ring is lost, damaged, or stolen, your policy can help protect your investment. The process is simple, the price is affordable, and the peace of mind it gives you is reassuring.
Dean’s Jewelry is Here to Help You Choose the Right Ring in the Columbus, Ohio Area
We know how hard it can be to find a ring that’s right for you. As your local jeweler, we want to make that shopping experience simple, budget-friendly and hassle-free. With the anxiety of such a big purchase looming, let us be your voice of reassurance.
An engagement ring is an investment, and an important decision. Come visit the store today to discuss your options and get the ring of your dreams. Or, you can start exploring our collection of diamond engagement rings online. We can’t wait to work with you to find the perfect ring!