How Much Should I Spend on an Engagement Ring?

“How much should I spend on an engagement ring?” is a question we often get asked in our studios. Many customers are unsure about what they should be budgeting, and what their expectations should be.

The traditional guideline you might have heard is X months’ salary. However, this guideline has never been clear. Some say two months, some say three, and some say one. Whatever the number, most sources can agree these guidelines were created as part of marketing campaigns. “Rules” like these don’t consider your personal situation. Don’t let arbitrary rules dictate how much you spend. Instead, be guided by what you are comfortable with and your personal financial values.

How Much Do People Normally Spend on Engagement Rings?

In short, Australians are spending more than they used to when shopping for engagement rings. A 2019 study revealed the average amount of money spent by Australians on an engagement ring was $5,297. This was a significant increase from 10 years earlier when the average was $2,579. More recent figures from 2021 put the average amount spent at $6,000, yet another increase. It is important to remember that for every average, there are people who are far above and far below that amount. Every couple is going to have different determining factors for deciding how much to spend, regardless of their income.

When deciding what engagement ring budget is right for you, here are some guidelines to keep in mind:

What Engagement Ring Design Do I Want?

When looking at engagement ring prices, most rings have two (or more) elements adding up to the total price. The first is the ring design itself, and the second element is any gemstones or diamonds you want in the ring. Do you prefer a more simple and classic design such as our Elegance engagement ring? In this case, the majority of the budget would go towards the centre diamond or gemstone. Or would you rather have something with more detail like our Eve or Aurelia engagement rings? Thinking through where you want your money to go (the ring versus the gemstone) can help you decide what you want to prioritise.

What Type of Gemstone/s Do I Want in My Engagement Ring?

If you have a certain design in mind for your ring, changing what type of stone you feature can significantly impact the cost of the ring. Your options are endless. From ethically sourced natural diamonds, exquisite coloured gemstones, and lab-grown diamonds. Regardless of what you decide, there is a range of options for any price point.

Are Lab-Grown Diamonds Less Expensive?

Lab grown diamonds are a budget-conscious girl’s best friend. You can often get a larger diamond in a lab grown for the same price, or even less. A great example of this is our Ballerina engagement ring in white gold, click the images below to see how the prices compare:

Round Solitaire Engagement Ring White Gold | Ballerina

Are Coloured Gemstone Engagement Rings Cheaper?

If you want a unique twist on a classic look, choosing a gemstone for the centre stone instead of a diamond is a great way to achieve that. Coloured gemstone prices can vary depending on the rarity of the stone and the colour. Some gemstones might be cheaper than diamonds. Alternatively, a coloured gemstone might give you the a bigger stone for the same price. The most common coloured gemstone we use in engagement rings are sapphires, but your options for colour are endless. Ruby, tsavorite garnet, spinel, and aquamarine are other popular options.

One example of how this can change the price of a ring is our Nouvelle Lune ring, pictured with both a sapphire and a diamond. Click on the images below to see how the prices compare.

Oval Diamond with Side Stones Ring in White Gold | Nouvelle Lune (Diamond)
Oval Side Stones Dress Ring White Gold | Nouvelle Lune

Another example is our Oval Rosetta Halo Ring, with a larger peach sapphire for a similar price to a diamond. Click on the images below to see how the prices compare.

Oval Halo Dress Ring White Gold | Peach Rosetta
Halo Engagement Ring White Gold | Rosetta (Oval)

How Much Does Diamond Quality Affect the Cost?

If you decide on a diamond for your ring, your price will change depending on the quality of the diamond. Diamonds are graded by 4 factors, the 4 C’s, each of which can impact the price. If you are after a certain size or quality of diamond, compromising on other factors can be a way to get your dream ring within your budget. Some customers prioritise the size, and some prioritise the quality. Some go for somewhere in between. Our diamond inventory is a great place to explore the way in which these factors can change the price of a stone.

What Else Should I Keep In Mind?

When looking for an engagement ring, it is also important to consider any ongoing costs. Examples of these are any maintenance on the ring or the cost of insuring the ring. It is also important to think about the quality of the craftsmanship used to create the ring. A poorly made ring that is mass-produced might be cheaper initially, but the cost of repairs to the ring or replacing stones can add up! Our jewellers at Larsen are experts in their trade. We create pieces of the highest quality that meet our strict quality assurance guidelines. All our engagement rings come with a complimentary annual clean and safety check for the lifetime of the ring. They are also covered under our comprehensive lifetime manufacturing guarantee. You can read more about our after-care service and what we offer to our customers here.

The Custom Process: The Larsen Difference

Here at Larsen, we recognise that every couple will have different budgets and different values they want to prioritise. The beauty of the custom process is that it gives the customer control, and gives you a large range of price point options for your ring. If you have a specific budget in mind, having a ring custom-made for you gives you more options than if you were to pick something pre-made off the shelf.

At the end of the day, there truly is no right or wrong amount of money to spend on an engagement ring. Whether your budget is $3,000, $30,000 or $300,000, the Larsen Jewellery team are here to create a ring as unique as your love story.

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