The Secret to Engagement Ring Shopping | Houston Diamond Outlet
Now you are at the point where you want your future bride to wear a symbol of your promise of marriage. You want her ring to be perfect. A reflection of yourself as well as her taste. Something she will be proudly wearing and showing off for a long time, if not forever.
I have been selling engagement rings and in Houston for over 25 years and I would say I have seen it all. Having said that, I believe my experience can help get you through some of the major common issues when it comes to getting started in the process of buying an engagement ring. This guide is not a guide on how to buy a ring or diamond, but how to get started.
To Buy Alone or Not Buy Alone
First, should shopping be a couples thing or should the guy buy it on his own. Should it be a total surprise or have at least some element of surprise. It has been my experience that most couples have discussed the idea of marriage and even a ring and have some sort of interaction in the engagement ring buying process. Whether that means they come in and actually pick out and buy the engagement ring together, or he comes alone with a lot of suggestions. Some couples shop together and the guy comes back later to leave some element of surprise. Many times she just sends him a bunch of pics to his phone and tells him to pick. Rarely, do I see the guy come in by himself with no idea of what she wants just to make it a complete surprise.
According to a study from The Knot of 14,000 engaged or newly married people, they reported 33% shopped together.
Since most couples discuss marriage before the purchase of the engagement ring, it really is not a secret that a ring is coming. It is my suggestion that you have at least an idea of what she wants. That may mean browsing in stores or online together, asking her friends and family or keeping those ring pics she has been texting you.
Things to take note of
Note shape of diamond, size of diamond and type of setting. There are many shapes of diamonds, but the most common in 2019 are round, cushion and some fancies like oval or princess.
Setting styles range from antique style, simple with diamonds, a single diamond on a plain band to ornate. Check out the most sought after engagement rings in Houston of 2019.
In 2019, in my store, 90%+ choose white gold but rose gold or even yellow gold is an option that you must pay attention to. If you are getting conflicting messages… ask. On several occasions I have someone trying to shop alone and they know what style she wants and they choose a ring then they can’t decide white gold or an alternative because she sent him pics of both white gold and, let’s say, rose gold. I would suggest hinting or just plain asking so you are not tortured trying to make a decision without her.
If you are shopping without her ask your jeweler about returns or exchanges. A good jeweler will do what it takes to make you both happy. That may mean she comes back to exchange it, but find that out before you pull the trigger.
Next I recommend shopping online. This way you can get a feel for how much things cost. You can also browse a lot a designs to help you narrow it down. I highly don’t recommend picking out a ring and purchasing online, but by browsing you will have an idea of how to set your budget.
Many people don’t like disclosing their budget with the jeweler when they first come in. I try and make it very simple and give customers an idea of what things cost before I ask for a budget. Also, don’t get held up with the idea you need to spend three months salary on an engagement ring. According to a 2017 study by Wedding Wire, the average engagement ring cost about $5,000. Whether or not that is your budget, is all up to you.
If you find you are simply not able to afford the ring you want her to have look into financing options. Many stores offer financing that you can make payments over time. If financing is not an option you may consider buying what you can afford now and upgrading later. In my experience this is done frequently because many young couples usually are not making a lot of money. Ask your jeweler what the trade up policies are, most are happy to offer future upgrades.
Once you have an idea of what she wants and an idea of how much that may cost, you will need to go to a store in person. If at all possible I would hope you can find a wholesaler in your area. If you are close to a major city doing a google search should be enough to find a jeweler other than a big box store like Zales or Kay’s. Unless you are into paying for brand like Tiffany or Cartier, those stores will be ultra expensive.
A true wholesaler is one that either manufactures the engagement rings they display or at least owns them. They will have a decent selection of loose diamonds in stock and will not need to “get something in” for you. If they need to “get something in” that means they will be getting in on consignment from a wholesale and adding their mark up. Going to a retailer or broker will just add another middle man and increase your cost.
Shopping in person is a much better way to narrow down your selection and make a purchase. Online you can see some images, but actually holding the ring and potentially trying it on is a completely different experience. Also, seeing your diamond in person, comparing it to others, and seeing in different lighting makes all the difference in the world. As I mentioned before, I am not going into how to choose a ring or diamond in this article, but I highly discourage buying a diamond online. Check out our engagement ring page for some of the latest styles at wholesale prices.
By taking these few simple steps I hope you will find your engagement ring shopping experience to be enjoyable and not stressful. This is an exciting time of your life and, take my advice, enjoy it! Ultimately buying an engagement ring should be an experience you will not forget.