Here’s How Much You Should Spend on an Engagement Ring (2024)

Before your head goes spinning from the sheer number of engagement ring designs, diamond retailers, and digits of price tags, let's take a moment to remember why you're here. Understanding how much to spend on engagement rings isn't something we'd expect you to subconsciously know. But this piece of jewelry doesn't have to put you into debt to make you and your partner happy. In fact, several factors go into purchasing a ring, from creating a spreadsheet budget to enlisting the help of the “four Cs.” Here are five pieces of advice for keeping your head on your shoulders while searching for that perfect engagement ring.

1. Understanding the Average Cost of an Engagement Ring

If you have absolutely no idea where to start on how much to spend on an engagement ring, it's not a bad idea to look at the average amount people spend. The rule of thumb people typically followed was the two-month salary guideline—which was created during the Great Depression, when diamond sales weren't doing too well and De Beers, a leading diamond company, sought to improve the situation. The marketing campaign cast diamonds as the ultimate symbol of love and encouraged buyers to put aside one month's pay (which the company later boosted to three), to purchase a diamond engagement ring.

In the present day, this means a salary in the low six figures could translate into options that are at least $25,000 and up. But this rule is outdated for several reasons. While engagement rings are a pricy investment, the usual cost tends to be below $10,000, with a national average of $6,000, according to The Knot's 2022 Jewelry and Engagement Study. But that doesn't mean there aren't other factors to take into consideration for your wedding ring, like the types of gemstones (especially for the center stone), metals, carat weight, and setting.

2. Much Like a Wedding Budget, Set an Engagement Ring Budget

There's no need to go into debt or take out a student loan's worth of money for an engagement ring. This piece of jewelry is meant to be special, but not unreasonable. First (for you and/or your partner), analyze your current financial situation: salary, savings, and how much you would ideally wish to spend. Then, create a budget. If you're not too great with budgeting (don't worry, you're not the only one), pull out a spreadsheet and create a physical plan you'll want to stick to while engagement ring shopping. Be sure to factor in additional costs to your total, like jewelry insurance.

In essence, don't drain your savings for the sake of a ring. If you know you don't have enough to purchase the ring your partner is set on, consider payment plans. Check with your jeweler to see if they offer in-house financing, or think about using a credit card to cover the cost. There are payment options readily available, but be responsible by looking into interest rates and the realistic timeframe for paying off the ring. If you know yourself well enough to know you're not the best at timely payments, consider this a last resort.

3 Go Over the “Four Cs” With a Reputable Jeweler

Not everyone is going to have a reputable jeweler on hand or a family heirloom ring prepped and ready for the upcoming proposal. Start at local jewelry stores or gather recommendations from family members and friends. This doesn't have to be where you buy your ring, but it's a good place to begin your search.

Here’s How Much You Should Spend on an Engagement Ring (2024)


Here’s How Much You Should Spend on an Engagement Ring? ›

How much should you spend on an engagement ring? Most people believe you should spend at least two months' salary on your engagement ring. If, for example, you are making $60,000 per year, you should spend $10,000 on the engagement ring.

How much do they say you should spend on an engagement ring? ›

According to the classic engagement ring cost rule, you should spend three months' salary on an engagement ring for your loved one – after all, they'll be wearing that ring for the rest of their life.

What is the appropriate amount of money for an engagement ring? ›

According to a 2022 study from Credit Donkey, most couples reported wanting to spend between $1,000 and $5,000, though the average cost of an engagement ring was around $5,225. (This is actually down from 2019, when the average rang in at a whopping $7,750.)

Is $1000 enough for an engagement ring? ›

A $1,000 budget for an engagement ring is a practical starting point that aligns with many people's financial realities. At this price point, you're typically looking at a smaller carat weight or considering alternative options such as lab-grown diamonds which often offer a better value.

Is $6000 enough for an engagement ring? ›

Average cost of an engagement ring

In 2022, couples spent an average of about $6,000 on an engagement ring, according to The Knot 2022 Real Weddings Study.

Is $20,000 too much for engagement ring? ›

According to tradition, the amount you choose to spend on an engagement ring should approximate the amount of your monthly salary times two. By this measure, anyone who earns $2,000 a month should be looking at models in the $4,000 range. For someone earning $10,000 a month, a $20,000 ring would be about right.

What is the golden rule for engagement ring prices? ›

The 3-Month Salary Rule:

This is one of the most popular engagement ring cost rules, stipulating that one must shell out the equivalent of 3 months' gross or net salary for purchasing an engagement ring.

What is the etiquette for engagement ring cost? ›

You Should Spend Three Month's Worth of Your Salary on a Ring. "There is a long-standing cultural tradition of spending two to three months' salary on an engagement ring.

What is the rule for spending on engagement ring? ›

It's known as the "three months' salary" rule, and it implies that a buyer should put three months of their salary toward a sparkler for their future spouse. For context, The Knot's 2023 Jewelry and Engagement study found that the average cost of an engagement ring in the US is $5,500.

Is $10 000 enough for an engagement ring? ›

Perhaps one that offers a bit more than just a diamond? If so, then $10,000 is an excellent budget to work with. You may have heard by now that $10,000 engagement rings are becoming more and more popular. The average of spending $5,000 on your engagement ring may soon be a thing of the past.

What is an acceptable amount to pay for an engagement ring? ›

We have all heard of the saying 'an engagement ring should cost 3 months' salary' and although this is a great way to set a goal for saving there is no set rule for this.

Is $10,000 a good price for engagement ring? ›

Typically, $10,000 can afford you a ring with a significant diamond, often reaching or surpassing the 1-carat mark, which is a common weight for engagement ring diamonds.

How much should a man spend on a wedding ring? ›

Average wedding band cost for men

The average cost of a wedding band for men is about $510, according to The Knot. The price can vary significantly based on the metal used. Titanium is the least expensive, while platinum costs the most.

What is the etiquette for buying an engagement ring? ›

The Rule: One person has to foot the bill.

Regardless, there's no denying that an engagement ring is a sizable expense. And while it's common for the proposer to buy the ring, either partner can contribute any amount they'd like.

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