What to Remember During Your Ring Buying Process

You’ve found the one you want to spend the rest of your life with and the time has come to ask for their hand in marriage. You want to make sure to pick the perfect ring, but stress starts to set in as you try and think where to begin the process. Questions might start to run through your head such as “How much do I spend?” or “What style should I go for?”. Well, first things first: take a breath, relax and read on to find out what to keep in mind when going through the ring purchases process.

 

Talk to your partner

PC: MaggShots Photography

Not sure what style ring to choose? Don’t be afraid to talk to your partner about what preference they prefer. Sure, a marriage proposal should be a surprise, but never unexpected. So having this convo with your significant other won’t throw a wrench in your plan. However, if you’d rather not be so blunt in asking, there are other ways you can gather this information. Pull in some of her closest friends and family members for help. Chances are she has shared this information once or twice and after all, no one knows her better than her mother and best friend! Another route to take is to look in her jewelry box to see the existing styles she owns. What are the shapes of the stones on her rings and the metals she favors? Grabbing a ring for sizing purposes can always help with the process as well. Just make sure it isn’t one she will notice missing! Regardless of the way you go about finding out her ring desire, getting these facts will help in figuring out and setting a budget to work within.

 

Research

PC: Ellen Ashton Photography

Once you have figured out her preferred style, it is time to do your research. So much more goes into buying a ring than just style. Depending on your choice to buy your engagement ring online or in store, it is important to research diamonds and rings in general. Familiarize yourself with the 4 c’s of diamonds: cut, color, clarity and carat which are the most important components to master when making a diamond purchase.

For instance, cut is the most important aspect to take into consideration when buying a diamond. It plays the biggest influence in establishing that sparkle every girl wants in her ring and without a high cut grade, a diamond of a higher quality can appear lifeless. It is smart to consider cut and carat together, as a bigger carat diamond that has a poor cut grade can often appear smaller than say a smaller diamond with a higher cut grade. To maximize your budget, it is suggested that you choose the highest diamond cut grade your budget will allow, usually starting at ‘Very Good’. If purchasing online, look into buying tips, grading scales and comparison charts, to help you decide the best diamond cut for your budget, as most sites provide this information.

PC: Macy O’Connell Photography

When purchasing an engagement ring, it’s important to understand how the color of a diamond can affect the price. The diamonds with the highest quality are colorless, while those of lower quality have noticeable color, which comes off as pale yellow. The Gemological Institute of America grades diamond color on a scale of D, which is colorless to Z which will have a light yellow or brown tint to it. There are six categories on the GIA diamond chart, with color grades that range from absolutely colorless to light in color. Diamonds that are rated D have little to absolute no color and are considered very rare, whereas G and H color diamonds are close to colorless, and since they’re priced lower they are considered excellent value diamonds. To put it simply, the more you move down the color chart, the lower the color grade will be making the light yellow hues more distinct.

As for clarity, this is often deemed the least important out of the 4c’s because the majority of diamonds have imperfections that are so tiny we are unable to see them with the naked eye. It is important to note that these microscopic imperfections do not affect a diamond’s elegance in any way.

 

Financing

PC: MaggShots Photography

It is no secret that purchasing your wedding rings can be a large investment. Most jewelry stores, whether online or in-store will provide you with financing options- take advantage of them! Many, if not all jewelry stores, will offer financing options such as credit cards which provide you with the flexibility to pay over time. Benefits with a credit card include convenient payment options, no annual fees and sometimes even special access to card member-only offers and promotions. Don’t let this major purpose overwhelm you with paying all upfront- consider having a financial weight lifted off your shoulders by financing your rings or taking out a low-interest engagement ring loan!

 

Appraisal

PC: Ellen Ashton Photography

Once your rings are purchased, your next step should be to get them insured. If you aren’t sure what the rock you bought is worth then getting your ring appraised is a smart move. You can’t protect the value of your ring if you don’t know what it’s worth, can you? Before jumping the gun with any appraiser, do your research to make sure they hold the proper credentials. The last thing you want is for the appraiser to exaggerate the value of your ring. Sure, you will be over the mean when the bling that cost you a certain price appraises for double, however, there is the potential of losing money in the long run by paying a higher monthly premium for a ring that was appraised at double what it should have been.

It is also important to note that as the years pass, the value of your ring will most likely increase from the time it was purchased. With that being said, have your ring re-appraised every two to three years for insurance purposes. Consider visiting the same appraiser each time to get the most accurate appraisal.

 

By keeping this advice in mind during and after your ring purchase, the process will be sure to go off with a hitch!