One of the most exciting times in your life will be deciding you want to pick out an engagement ring and ask your significant other to marry you!
It’s a decision that will stand throughout your marriage, so choosing the perfect ring should be done with extensive forethought.
Here are 7 things to consider before purchasing an engagement ring for the love of your life.
1. Is Protection Provided?
Choosing an engagement ring is actually only the beginning.
You’ll want this symbol of your love and devotion to last a lifetime, so making sure the ring is protected is paramount. After all, life happens.
Dirt, wear and tear and everyday life takes a toll on all jewelry, so making sure the warranty coverage is robust. What good is a beautiful engagement ring if six months down the line something happens and the ring is damaged?
Completely replacing the ring could come with a substantial price tag. You would hate to start over after making such an important decision, both in terms of appeal and investment.
Your love is forever, so shouldn’t her engagement ring last a lifetime as well?
A jewelry warranty or guarantee generally covers replacement or repair of diamonds and other gemstones, ideally for a lifetime.
The warranty may be included in the price of the ring, or the jeweler may offer it as an add-on.
Typically, the jeweler will require you to have the ring regularly inspected, usually at least every six months. They will normally clean your ring free of charge as well, giving it a brand new sparkly look!
Not complying with the jeweler’s terms can void the warranty, so it’s important that both you and your fiancé read the warranty and understand its requirements.
Hal Davis Jewelers, jewelry experts for more than 5 decades, furnishes an appraisal with each purchase.
Appraisals are important information about your jewelry that is necessary if you decide to insure the piece, and should include the following:
- Current retail prices (in the region where you bought the ring)
- Cut, clarity, color and carats of diamonds or other gemstones
- Details and description of the number of diamonds or other gemstones
- Composition and weight of the precious metal in the ring
- Material origins and assessment of craftsmanship
- Manufacturer’s marks (including brand name and serial number)
Hal Davis Jewelers provides a full description with each item’s current market replacement value. Each brand designer has its own warranty, and two of our brands—Tacori and Michael M—have lifetime warranties.
2. Is the Jeweler Trustworthy?
For most of us, buying fine jewelry only happens a few times during our life, but those times are emotionally significant.
Buying jewelry isn’t like making other major purchases.
Unless you have a trained eye, it’s difficult (if not impossible) to fully appreciate the value of a precious stone. Trusting a jewelry expert is worth your while.
Just as you want your significant other to cherish their engagement ring for a lifetime, you want to find a jeweler who will take care of the ring too.
A good reputation and integrity are preeminent in choosing a jeweler.
When shopping for a jeweler consider:
- Is the jeweler interested in your needs or do they focus on their own agenda? (price, style, etc.)
- How long has the jeweler been in business? A great warranty is worthless if the company you bought it from isn’t there to back it up.
- Is the company credentialed? Be sure the jeweler has certification from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or American Gem Society (AGS).
- What kind of services are offered? The jeweler should offer a wide variety of services so that you know you can have the ring cared for properly.
- Do they offer an in-house gemologist who is trained and knowledgeable?
- Do they have an in-house bench jeweler so her ring can be repaired or resized?
- Will the jeweler walk you through understanding the 4C’s so that you know what you are looking at?
- Does the jeweler educate you on the quality of the metal used in the ring?
The American Gem Society certifies all their gemstones and diamonds, ensuring a quality product you can believe in.
It’s important that your jeweler maintains a close relationship with each customer, ensuring they are comfortable. You need to trust the company taking care of your jewelry throughout the years (cleaning, stone tightening, rhodium plating, etc.).
3. Understanding the 4Cs
The Gem Institute of America (GIA) made buying diamonds a whole lot easier when they created the 4Cs (cut, clarity, color and carat) as a guide.
Now we have a universal method of comparing diamonds objectively so you can know exactly what you are buying.
Details on the 4Cs:
- Color signifies value. Diamonds are valued by how close they come to being colorless. The less color in the diamond, the more valuable it is. Even though slight differences in color may be invisible to the naked eye, they make a big distinction in the value.
- Cut determines the allure of a diamond more than any other factor. The fire, sparkle and brilliance are affected by the cut. A diamond cutter must be very precise to maximize the characteristics of the cut.
- Carat weight is the measurement of how much a diamond weighs.
- Clarity is based on the number of blemishes and inclusions visible in the diamond. These “flaws” are a natural result of the formation of the stone in the ground, and the fewer inclusions and blemishes, the rarer the stone.
4. What’s Her Style?
This is probably the hardest factor to quantify. There is no “standard” by which to measure personal aesthetic preference.
So how do you go about finding out what she’d like to have?
Here are a few ideas:
- Ask her girlfriends or siblings. They probably have a good idea of what she likes. She may have even shown them her dream engagement ring.
- Check her Pinterest account. She has probably posted rings that she likes, and you can probably figure out if she prefers white gold, platinum, yellow gold or even rose gold.
- Pay attention to her current jewelry. Does she wear yellow or white gold? Is it traditional in design or modern?
- Consider a custom design. What is more romantic than a ring that will be uniquely hers?
5. What Size Is Her Finger?
Okay, maybe this one is the hardest question. Short of asking her and giving away the surprise, you may just have to guess.
But that’s okay because if you buy the wrong size the jeweler can easily resize the ring if you guessed wrong.
6. How Much Is Your Budget?
Sticking to a budget when buying an engagement ring can be tough, especially if you have no idea what you want.
Here are a few tips:
- Determine a budget you can afford and stick to it! Don’t fall for the old adage that an engagement ring needs to cost one or two times your monthly budget.
- Know what you want in a diamond. Remember that cut is the most important characteristic of the stone, and be willing to compromise a little to get an aesthetically pleasing ring and still stay within your budget.
- Consider white gold over platinum. They look quite similar, but white gold is much less expensive than platinum.
- You don’t have to buy the biggest diamond. A slightly smaller stone can save you lots of money, so look at 0.8 or 0.9 carats instead of 1 carat.
7. Will you Want to Upgrade the Diamond or Mounting Someday?
Of course, you don’t need to know the answer to that question right away.
But, if you have the idea that you might want an upgrade in the future, then knowing what the jeweler will do for you in this respect is a good idea.
Two of the designer brands at Hal Davis Jewelers—Michael M and Tacori—offer up to 75% credit for upgrades.
Hal Davis Jewelers offers up to 100% credit on diamond upgrades.
That means if you decide to upgrade her diamond ring after your initial purchase, HDJ will buy your original purchase back and give you credit towards your upgrade.
If you are curious if your jeweler does this, just ask!
Now that you have an idea of what’s involved in choosing and buying a diamond engagement ring for the love of your life, all that’s left is to pop the question.
This is an exciting time for you and your significant other! At times, it can be nerve-wracking. We want to help make your journey of purchasing an engagement ring as simple as possible.
Although we can help you with the steps towards your purchase, the poetry behind your proposal is up to you!
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