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HOW TO SHOP FOR AFFORDABLE ENGAGEMENT RINGS
Let's face it. Spending 10,000 on an engagement ring is just not practical for most people. You want to get your partner the ring of her dreams, but you're not sure how to shop for affordable engagement rings. Here are some helpful tips to get you started (and hopefully land you a perfect ring, for the perfect price).
Shop Online, Not in Store
If your ultimate goal is to get the best deal on your engagement ring, the mall is not the right place to shop. In fact, it is where you’ll find the most inflated prices for diamond jewelry on the market. This is because jewelry shops at the mall have far more to pay for (rent, electricity, staff) than jewelry shops that exclusively sell online. You will find that many of the jewelry spots at the mall are well-known designer jewelry brands. Brands such as Tiffany & Co. and Cartier are high-end luxury brands. This, of course, results in more expensive jewelry. The best you can do at a mall is to check for designs and do a little bit of research and window shopping. Other than that, if you want the best deal, shop for affordable engagement rings online, not in store.
Look Out for Holiday Sales
The year is filled with holidays that mark opportunities to save a few hundred on an engagement ring. Be it Mother’s Day, valentine’s Day, or Thanksgiving, most online jewelry shops offer great holiday sales that are definitely worth the way. You can get discounts from anywhere between 20% to 40% off on beautiful diamond jewelry. Do your window shopping ahead of time and have a ring design picked out and ready. Sign-up for brand newsletters to get an email notification for when they are on sale. As soon as there is a big holiday sale, you can shop for your engagement ring at a fraction of its original price.
Don’t Shop for the Perfect Diamond
The diamond on an engagement ring is what makes it expensive. But more specifically, it is the quality of a diamond that can determine whether an engagement ring sells for 5 or 10 grand. The more ‘perfect’ a diamond is, the more expensive it is. If you’re looking to save money on a diamond ring, don’t look for the perfect diamond. What to look for in an affordable diamond:
- Diamonds with SI1 or SI2 Clarity Grading have the best value for your money.
- Look for Eye Clean Diamonds. These are diamonds that look flawless to the naked eye. They are a lot more affordable than flawless or close to flawless diamonds.
- Shop for diamonds just under a Carat weight. For example, a 1.75 Carat diamond ring will cost around 4000, and a 2.00Carat ring will cost up to 6000. The price difference is significant, but the weight difference is not.
- You don’t need to shop for a colourless diamond (D, E,or F colour grading). Much like the perfect clarity, a colourless diamond is a lot more expensive. It is okay to go for the near-colourless grading such as G, H, I, and J. These diamonds look colourless to the untrained eye.
The perfection of a diamond will only often be seen under magnification. A diamond that is worth 10 grand can look similar to the one that is 6 grand from an untrained eye’s perspective. And in most cases, it will be you and your partner who will be looking at your engagement ring. You don’t need that perfect and expensive diamond for the ring to still look beautiful.
Shop Specifically Within Your Budget
With the vast market of diamond jewelry online, it is easy to get lost amongst the hundreds of available engagement ring designs, all at different prices. This can make your search for the right ring, at the right price, a lot more difficult than it should be. A good way of avoiding wasting your time browsing through hundreds of rings is to shop specifically for your budget. Lucky for you, many affordable engagement ring options can be shopped for according to a budget. For example, you can shop for 2 Carat Engagement Rings that range from 5 to 8 thousand in price. Your search will be narrowed down to the budget you are aiming to stick to, eliminating the possibility of you getting distracted by other rings at more expensive prices.
Check for Diamond Certification
Be aware that there is some diamond jewelry that may be sold without diamond certification. These can be appealing as they are most likely sold at very low prices. But without a diamond certificate, you can’t be sure that the diamond on the ring is a real one. As soon as you start to shop for affordable engagement rings, make it a point to check that the diamonds you are looking at have been certified by a trusted gemological laboratory.
Diamond Certification / Gemological Laboratory
DGC diamond certification / Diamond Gemological Certification
AGS diamond certification / Diamond Gemological Certification
GIA diamond certification / Gemological Institute of America
GSI diamond certification / Gemological Science International
SGL diamond certification / Solitaire Gem Labs
IGI diamond certification / International Gemological Institute
GCAL diamond certification / Gem Certification & Assurance Lab
EGL diamond certification / European Gemological Laboratories
HRD diamond certification / Hoge Raad voor Diamant, Diamond High Council
Take Your Time to Do Your Research
If you want to get the best deal for the right diamond ring, you should give yourself enough time to do research. This means going through all the possible options for a ring. The problem with a rushed buy is that you can’t guarantee that you buy the best possible price. Tips to do engagement ring research: - Look at all your possible options for jewelry shops - Compare different prices of the same ring design from different jewelers - Take note of your top options, and choose from them With enough time browsing through potential engagement rings, you are giving yourself the opportunity to find the right ring, at the best price found on the market.
Make Sure There’s a Warranty and Return Policy
Never accept the fact that a ring is affordable, that it is okay not to have the security as a buyer to have a warranty and return policy when you purchase from a jeweler. You’ll most likely be shopping online, and it is better to guarantee that the shop you are buying from will be there to help you if your ring is damaged or you need to return it.
Ask for Financing Options
If the price engagement rings are a little too heavy for you to pay for all at once, there’s always the option of financing. Ask jewelers what their offers are for staggered payments. You never know, you might actually be able to afford a 10,000 with the right financing option. Nowadays, there are great alternatives to paying all at once. You can pay in staggered payments using a credit card. There are also third-person companies such as Bread and Split-it, that give you the option to pay in staggered installments, without the heavy interest fee.
You can shop for affordable engagement rings, and still have the option of quality and beautiful designs. The key is to shop the right way. Use these tips to help you find the perfect diamond ring, at the price you are happy to pay. These tips will not only help you get the ring within the budget you are hoping for, but these will also help you eliminate all the commonly stressful experiences of shopping for a diamond ring.