How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?

There are a lot of myths on what to spend, so it can be hard to get an estimate.

Congrats! You’re about to embark on such an exciting time in your life. But first, you need to pick out an engagement ring. Perhaps your significant other already has a ring in mind, or maybe you’re on your own. Either way, you’ll need to come up with a budget. But how much should you spend on an engagement ring?

An old tradition says you should spend three months’ salary on an engagement ring. This rule doesn’t apply anymore! The reality is, there is no one-size-fits-all budget for buying a ring. Experts say the average engagement ring can cost between $5,500-$7,000. There are beautiful rings out there though, that can cost $1,500-$2,000 (and maybe even less for the savvy shopper). And, of course, there are rings that cost more than the average.

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Here are some things to consider when creating a budget for an engagement ring:

Your Current Financial Status

How will you be paying for the ring? Will it be in installments, with or without interest? Paid in full? Cash or credit card? If you’re dipping into your savings account, will there be enough for future plans? Your wedding? A house? It’s important to take a look at your finances to see how much you can afford.

What Does Your Partner Want?

Or rather, what are they expecting? While it doesn’t matter what you spend, it’s important to know what your partner is looking for in an engagement ring as far as size and style. While it might be nice to splurge and treat your future spouse to the biggest and most expensive ring, consider what they would like. Perhaps they want something simple and a smaller, less expensive ring is all they’re looking for (because your love is enough!)

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The Four Cs

Clarity, cut, carat and color. All of these should be taken into consideration when creating your engagement ring budget. Clarity refers to the level of imperfections in a diamond, cut is a measurement of the diamond’s dimensions, carat is the unit of measurement for a diamond’s weight, and color indicates how clear the diamond is. 


While diamonds are the traditional stone in an engagement ring, there’s no rule that says every engagement ring has to be a diamond. In fact, stones like topaz, morganite, and sapphires are becoming increasingly popular engagement ring choices. If your future spouse’s heart isn’t set on a diamond, consider looking at rings that feature other beautiful stones – they’re usually a little cheaper than diamonds, and you can use the money you save on wedding expenses instead.


Factor in engagement ring insurance when creating your budget. While we know that your significant other will take great care of their ring, things happen, and it should be protected.

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Ultimately, you should spend what you are comfortable with. If you know that you’ll be paying for your wedding, keep that in mind as you ring shop.  And remember to keep your partner in mind. Thoughtfulness is more important than how much you spend.