Average Price for Engagement Ring (Based on Salary)

An engagement is a special, life-changing, and lasting memory shared between two individuals. For such a momentous occasion, having an engagement ring perfectly suited for your proposal will help you and your loved one cherish the moment for years to come.

The prices of engagement rings vary greatly and are determined based on a variety of factors. Although all couples want nothing but the very best for their partner, the engagement ring is still only a part of a greater wedding experience, which will have costs of its own.

Engagement hopefuls may not know how much to spend on an engagement ring based on their financial situation or the preferences of their partner. Fortunately, there are options to accomplish any engagement ring look for any budget.

Average Price of an Engagement Ring

People spend on average $3,500-$4,000 on an engagement ring. Prices of engagement rings vary based on the size and quality of the stone, the type of metal, any desired details in the ring, and if the ring is a brand name. This average cost also included ring insurance, which 68% of customers purchased.

OccupationAnnual SalarySalary After TaxMonthly IncomeRing Budget
Restaurant worker$27,000$18,800$1,600$2,000
Stock broker$100,000$70,000$5,800$9,500

For more information on wedding spending statistics for 2020, make sure to check out Brides’ 2020 American Wedding Study. Before you purchase the ring, knowing the answer to these questions can help:

  • Know your partner’s preferences
  • Know the origins of the stone you choose
  • Pay attention to the setting of the stone
  • Consider working with an experienced jeweler
  • Avoid entering any binding agreements
  • Using stone grading as a guide but not the determining factor

For more tips and explanations for buying an engagement ring, refer to Vogue’s 10 Tips for Buying an Engagement Ring.

The average spending on an engagement ring varies depending on your income. For example, a school teacher who makes $50,000 will likely make $39,500 after tax with a monthly net pay of $3,300. They are likely to spend around $3000-$5,000 on the engagement ring.

A stock broker who makes $100,000 will likely make $70,000 after tax with a monthly net pay of $5800. They are likely to spend around $9000-$10,000 on an engagement ring.

Engagement Ring Cost by Carat

An average engagement ring is around $3000 and it is around 0.70 carat. A good engagement rings can cost around $7000 and can be defined as having high quality, popular, and preferable choices of center stones for the majority of Americans.

Each couple has their preferences, so understand your partner’s desires before purchasing a ring. Ultimately, a good engagement ring’s cost varies primarily on its center stone.

Based on information from past wedding studies and aggregated purchase data, a good engagement ring center stone has a cut of ‘good’ or better, a color of ‘I’ or higher, and a clarity of VS1 (meaning ‘very slightly included’) or higher. The most popular diamond shape is Round.

Based on these criteria, examples of the pricing for good engagement rings are as follows:

Price ($)$1,200$2,800$4,301$7,503

To view more details, see different shaped stones, and view more rings based on cut, color, clarity, and carat, refer to Blue Nile’s Build Your Own Ring online tool.

How Much You Should Spend

As a general rule, you should spend up to a maximum of 3 months of your salary on an engagement ring. An average person tends to spend around 1-2 months of their salary, and 3 months’ salary is considered very high in terms of an engagement ring budget.

This three-month salary rule evolved from an older rule from the 1980s saying someone should spend two months’ salary on an engagement ring. That two-month rule initially evolved from an even older rule, which originated first during the Great Depression.

This restrictive rule is a myth. Consumers have a lot more freedom to spend what they want to buy what best fits their partners preferences and their budget. Most budgets and preferences can be met equally with the options that exist today.

What To Consider When Purchasing

Before purchasing an engagement ring, you should know your partner’s preferences (if they have any) for what their ideal engagement ring would be like. The type of metal used for the ring and any additional features desired will influence a ring’s final price. Nothing will impact the ring’s final price nearly as much as the selection of center stone, however.

When purchasing a ring, consider the following factors for the center stone:

  1. Shape
  2. Carat
  3. Cut
  4. Color
  5. Clarity

More popular shapes for stones will lead to higher-priced rings. Similarly, more ideal cuts and higher clarity will significantly increase the price of an engagement ring. A good engagement ring often cost more than double of an engagement ring.