How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?

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How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?

This page contains references to diamonds or engagement rings from different companies. Sometimes I do receive a commission when you click on links and buy the products.

Engagement should be about romance, the prospect of the future, and love. However, along with the engagement comes a new range of costs: the party, the big hit that is the wedding, and immediately – the cost of the engagement ring. How much should you spend on an engagement ring? Are there rules you should be following? How do you meet expectations without breaking the bank?

The reality is that you should probably set the budget before you do the browsing. It’s not much fun to discover the much-coveted ring isn’t a realistic prospect without an extra mortgage. However, you should also note that there is no set amount that you should spend. What’s right for you, and your relationship, is personal. However, there are some guidelines which will help you decide.

Most of these guidelines are summed up in etiquette rules of the past. Let’s take a look at these and see how realistic they are for helping you decide how much should you spend on an engagement ring.

One Month’s Vs Three Month’s Salary

In the US men who get down on one knee have typically been encouraged to spend between one and three month’s salary on the ring for their soon-to-be betrothed. You might hear it expressed as a percentage, usually 10%.  What’s good about this old-style rule is that it is a quantifiable, determinable amount. There aren’t any questions left, you just get given a nice round figure to work from.

Platinum Vatche U-113 6-Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring

Platinum Vatche U-113 6-Prong Solitaire Engagement Ring

This can work just fine for many couples, and means you can head on over to the jewelry store or website with a clear expression of budget.

However, this rule was fashioned when Americans tended to get married younger – therefore having naturally lower salaries. Additionally, this rule was started when setting up home together, and the first mortgage, was very much part of the marriage arrangement. Nowadays, the average age for marriage in the US is 28 and many are already living together, and already burdened with the expenses of accommodation and bills.

This can mean that this rule is difficult to interpret in modern scenarios. You could have more, or less, disposable income depending on your personal circumstances. Such a prescriptive budget guide is possibly less suitable for modern couples. It’s also worth remembering that the salary guide for budgeting for engagement rings has its roots in a De Beers advertising campaign, and successfully tapped into the emotive nature of this type of ring purchase.

Working from Averages

If working on a proportion of your salary doesn’t work for you then there are other options open to you. Many couples choose to work out what they should spend based on what the majority of people do. Working from the average engagement ring spend can give you a ball park figure of what you should spend. The average cost of an engagement ring is $4758.

14K White Gold Spiral Tension Set Engagement Ring

14K White Gold Spiral Tension Set Engagement Ring

This gives you a good working guide, however, it doesn’t take in to account your own personal circumstances at all. Even if you earn the national average salary it doesn’t mean that your finances are completely average. This situation may lead to over-stretching yourself on one hand, or not truly demonstrating your fiancée’s worth on the other.

Say Goodbye to the Rules

The result is, that for most couples, how much you should spend on an engagement ring should be determined on an individual level. The amount you spend should be decided between you, or solely by the person buying the ring. You should consider what you can afford, whilst also ensuring that this is a large and symbolic gesture.

Once you have established your own budget, you’re then better placed to begin looking at engagement rings within your price range. Also, don’t forget, that a carefully selected engagement ring holds its value, and will become an heirloom. Money spent on an engagement ring is an investment, and rarely lost.

If you need any help selecting an Engagement Ring and Diamond get in touch and I recommend the best retailers for your budget.

For the best cut quality diamonds, try the A CUT ABOVE diamonds from Whiteflash, I would also consider the Astor Collection by Blue Nile and True Hearts by James Allen

Richard Jenkins
Richard Jenkins
Richard Jenkins, known as Your Diamond Guru, is a diamond enthusiast who became an expert after searching for an engagement ring for his fiancée. Frustrated by the lack of guidance, he studied diamonds and became the go-to person for advice on buying the best diamonds. Richard launched Your Diamond Guru to provide unbiased reviews and resources to help others make informed purchasing decisions. He emphasizes the importance of considering factors beyond size, such as cut, color, clarity, carat, certification, and light performance.

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