Budgeting 101: How much should you spend on an engagement ring?

Posted in Budgets, Saving

Oh the age old question that I find many of my friends asking – how much should I spend on an engagement ring? This is a surprisingly tough and often taboo topic to discuss. Many couples do not share those details once they’re engaged, so an average amongst friends is often unknown.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Why are we discussing engagement rings on a financial blog? Well, you might say that I have weddings and engagements on my mind after getting engaged in August, and knowing what we can afford when it comes to an engagement ring along with other financial commitments, I felt that this was definitely a topic that needed to be discussed.

So do I have a magic number? Well, no. If you’re looking for a magical, mathematical formula that will give you the right answer, you might not be budgeting for what makes sense for you and your future fiancé.

So let’s start by looking at the age old two to three months of earnings argument. I’ve heard this many times before any of my friends and I got engaged. There is even a “fun” calculator available online available here. Now if you’re the one buying the ring in the relationship, I need you to take a deep breath. This argument isn’t exactly true. There is a lot of pressure to find the perfect ring, so I hope I can alleviate some stress.

According to a recent analysis by rate comparison website RateSupermarket.ca, the average price of an engagement ring is $4,000, while a wedding in Canada, including a venue, dress and a honeymoon can cost as much as $32,000.

So not only do you need to consider the cost of the ring, but there are so many other expenses (as I’ve learned) that need to be considered. You don’t need to buy your future spouse a diamond ring or partake in some stressful hunt for the perfect ring. You also don’t need to spend three months of your salary on a ring. The price tag should be the least important part of this event.

Instead, find out what style of ring they prefer. There are many brides-to-be who also prefer not to use an engagement ring. From there you can find the perfect ring that matches her style and fits into your budget.

I’ve included some useful resources below that you might want to take into consideration when you are planning to take the leap. Remember, just because you might be able to afford it, doesn’t mean you should.

Useful resources for engagement ring shopping:

How to shop for an engagement ring

Options when buying an engagement ring

– Nancy