How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?


There is no "magical" number as to how much you should spend on an engagement ring. For years, the "accepted" amount was 2-4 months salary, depending on who you asked. That is a reasonable and acceptable starting point to base your figures around but there are several other factors you need to consider. The average engagement ring costs about $5,400. At Mervis, our settings for rings start around $1,200 and go up from there-so we have plenty of rings that fit well under the average, as well as rings that lie within the average cost...and for those of you looking for something really extravagant, a few that are well OVER the average. The most important things to consider are these: How much can you comfortably afford to spend? No one can answer this question but you. This will depend on a multitude of factors: take home salary, amount in savings, monthly expenses. If you have a lot in savings, you may plan on paying for the ring in full. If you don't have much in savings and are afraid to deplete your savings, Mervis offers amazing financing options. This way, you can put a down payment on the ring and put a little bit towards the ring each month. What type of ring do you want? What style ring are you looking for? If you aren't sure, there are many ways to get more "bling" for a few less "bucks". You can always go for the ever popular halo trend, which is comprised of a series of small diamonds surrounding one larger center stone to make the center stone appear bigger/blingier. The solitaire is always a good, classic choice if you aren't sure what she wants- you can always add on details after choosing a simple stone to start. If you have NO clue what your girlfriend wants, you can always ask her or her friends and family-there are NO RULES when it comes to an engagement. Would you prefer a larger stone that is less quality, or a higher quality stone that is smaller for your money? There are two factors to consider here: the person you are buying the ring for, her style, and also your personal preferences. If you KNOW your girlfriend has her heart set on two carats and you can't afford that, would she rather a spectacular 1 carat that is close to perfect or a 1.5 carat that has visible flaws? Obviously, those two are the extremes, but that doesn't mean you can't get a lot of diamond for your money. You can go slightly down in color and clarity to increase your carat size, or even go down in carat size but up in color and clarity. Check out our downloadable diamond money saving tips here. You also would want to take in to account whether or not you want your stone certified. Gemological Institute of America (GIA) stones are graded on the most strict scale for diamonds, so they will be more expensive than an un-certified stone. You can always get your stone certified by various labs later if this paperwork is important to you. Does shape of the stone or metal really matter? If you are on a tight budget and don't have a particular metal or stone shape in mind, this can aid your shopping experience. Platinum is the most expensive metal out there, so if you are looking to cut costs but love the COLOR of platinum, look for a white gold ring. It is a very similar look with a much lower price tag. Most people tend to go towards white gold- over 72% of engagement rings are white gold. Another thing to keep in mind is the shape of the diamond itself: round brilliant diamonds, although the most popular, are the most expensive per carat because you cut away the highest percentage of the rough diamond to form the round brilliant. Round stones make up 55% of the chosen stones for engagement rings. At the end of the day, there is no "rule" for how much you should spend on an engagement ring beyond what makes you comfortable. Pick a budget, start looking at rings and if that budget is hard, we will work around it. If you find that what you want is out of your price range and your budget is more flexible, we can work with that too. At the end of the day, we want to create a beautiful ring to last a lifetime with you and your loved one.