Congratulations! You’re about to embark on a whirlwind adventure, starting a new life with the one you’re passionately in love with. Your mind is absolutely buzzing with questions, emotions, and random thoughts. In fact, you’ll have so much to think about and consider, you may come to realize that falling in love was the easy part! One of the first issues you’ll need to tackle is finding the perfect engagement ring. You’ll want to find a ring that you'll cherish for the rest of your life, but you’ll need to balance aesthetics with affordability. How much does an engagement ring cost? How do you go about building a budget for an engagement ring? If you’re wondering about these questions, you’re not alone! Most struggle with the decision of budgeting for diamond engagement rings. If that’s how you feel right now, don’t panic! Pompeii3, the online leader for affordable, high-quality bridal jewelry, has the advice you need to help you set the perfect diamond ring budget.
1.Don’t Bow to Societal Pressure
If you Google how much an engagement ring costs, you’re going to see a wide variety of pages giving an even wider variety of conflicting tips. Some of the more common pieces of advice you’ll find online says that you should base your budget for an engagement ring on how much salary you make a month. Some bridal websites will urge you to spend anywhere from the equivalent of two to three months salary on a ring. That’s a lot of pressure! Remember that your diamond ring budget is the first of many decisions you’ll be making for your lifetime together, and it’s one that you want to be perfectly comfortable with. Don’t overextend yourself simply because it’s what society is pressuring you to do. Before you even start your search, decide for yourself that no matter what happens, you’ll set a budget that is within your means. Remind yourself that, if you utilize credit, you’ll only do so if monthly payments end up fitting with your monthly budget. Remember, only you can truly answer the question of how much does an engagement ring cost.
2.Research Engagement Ring Prices
Before you set your official diamond ring budget, you should research the general prices of the styles of engagement rings your partner likes. You can do this several different ways:
- Look for rings together. Some people want to be totally surprised when it comes to their engagement ring, while others want to be part of the process. If they’re willing to give you some general guidance as to her tastes and preferences, it will help when it’s time to determine your budget.
- Consider the style of jewelry they prefer. If they’re not giving you any hints, take note of the kind of jewelry they like. Do they have a more understated style? Do they prefer vintage pieces? Do they want something with lots of “bling?”
- Talk to a trusted friend. If your special someone has a trusted companion that can keep a secret, ask for advice.
Once you’ve done your research, visit a few jewelry stores at your local mall and get some ballpark ideas of prices relative to the types of rings your partner likes. We also suggest you browse our wide selection of engagement and wedding rings online from the comfort of your home! Now, you’ve got a ballpark idea of the prices of the types of rings you’re looking for, but how much does an engagement ring cost in accordance with your diamond ring budget? It’s time to grab a calculator and find the answer to the question.
3.Calculate Your Budget
How much does an engagement ring cost? The next step of the process is to find out how much you can afford. This step is vital, and you have to be brutally honest with yourself. Don’t fudge the numbers to try to create an artificially high budget. You’ll only be cheating yourself in the long run. Remember, you’ll still need money to afford the wedding and honeymoon! To determine your diamond ring budget, you’ll need to follow these steps:
- Calculate your monthly income: Take your most recent pay stubs or recent W-2 to figure out your net (after taxes) monthly income. If you’re self-employed, take your income over the past year and divide it by 12 to find your average monthly pay. Don’t forget that self-employment tax will take 15% of your income in these cases.
- Calculate your monthly expenses: How much do you pay a month on your rent or mortgage? Do you have a car payment? How about student loans? What do you typically spend on groceries, utilities, and cell phones? Be thorough, because you’ll want to ensure you don’t miss anything. Use a spreadsheet if necessary to keep track of the numbers. There are also smartphone apps like Mint that can help you with these calculations.
- Subtract your expenses from your income: How much money do you have left each month after paying off all of your expenses? Any leftover amount is “free cash,” and can be used to start an engagement ring fund.
So ultimately, how much does an engagement ring cost? It’s the amount you can save in your engagement ring fund in a certain period of time. For instance, if you’re wanting to buy an engagement ring in six months and can save $500 a month, your diamond ring budget is $3,000.
4.Reconcile Differences Between Price and Budget
You may find that there’s a shortfall between your budget and the type of ring you want to buy. If this is the case, you might be tempted to overextend yourself and buy a ring you can’t afford. Don’t fall into this trap! There are several steps you can take if your diamond ring budget isn’t everything you were hoping to be.
- Find ways to increase your income: Can you lobby for a raise at work or offer to work for a few more hours each week? You could also try to find a part-time job for a few months and use the income from this job exclusively to build your ring budget.
- Find ways to decrease your expenses: Maybe it’s time to cut the cord and get rid of cable? Perhaps you should limit your double shot mocha lattes at the local coffee shop to once a week instead of once a day? Can you refinance your car loan to get a more favorable rate? Each decrease may seem small, but they add up!
- Save over a longer period of time: Instead of saving for three months, maybe you need to save for six months or even a year. Nobody wants to wait to get married, but it’s an option you may need to consider.
- Consider credit: This option isn’t for everyone, and should only be used if you can afford the monthly payments. If you go this route, your best option is utilizing financing that has zero percent APR over a certain period of time. Make sure that the monthly payments will fit into the monthly budget you’ve already established.
- Find ways to save on your engagement ring: There are several simple ways you can save on your engagement ring price tag without compromising on looks. For instance, instead of a platinum ring, you can opt for white gold. You can also choose lab-created diamonds instead of naturally mined ones. These diamonds have the same chemical and physical diamonds as their natural counterparts, but can be found at a fraction of the price. Simple switches like these can help you when your diamond ring budget isn’t as high as you’d like it to be.
No matter what you do, remember that she’ll love the ring because she loves you.
Stretch Your Budget by Shopping at Pompeii3
In the end, how much does an engagement ring cost is a question only you can answer. However, at Pompeii3, we promise to stretch your dollar even further by offering a dazzling array of engagement rings at reasonable prices. We’ve been handcrafting rings here in the USA for over 50 years, and our customers have been returning to us for generations. Because we are an online retailer, we don’t have the high overhead that the jewelry stores at the mall have. Our low overhead means that we can save money in ways the mall retailers can’t, and we pass those savings directly to you. No matter what your diamond ring budget may be, we have the perfect match. If you can’t find it on our website, we can create a custom piece to your exact specifications. We won’t be satisfied until you’re satisfied! Still have questions about how much an engagement ring costs? Contact us today so we can help you find the perfect engagement ring, no matter your budget.