Deciding that it's time to buy "the ring" is one of those moments that many people relate to signing the papers to buy their first house or finally saving up enough money to buy the car they've always had their eye on. It's a big purchase and typically is one of the most significant purchases that you will make in your early adult life.
Now that you know she's "the one" and you want to buy that ring - where do you even start trying to save?
With some preparation and research, you can be confident in your investment and find an amazing ring with the hard-earned money that you've saved up. Here are six tips for saving up for the diamond engagement ring of her dreams:
1. Set Up Automatic Transfers
If you use online banking, you are often able to set up automatic transfers from your checking account to your savings account. Create a separate checking account for your engagement ring fund, but make sure to label it something discreet in case your significant other sees. Start out by having it automatically transfer a smaller amount of money into it weekly, and then adjust from there. If after a month or two you think you can make the transfer amount larger, go for it! This is a mindless way to automatically save a good chunk of cash, and you usually earn more interest from money in your savings account, a double win.
2. Do Your Research
If you were going to buy a car, you would have researched it from top to bottom and everything in between. You would know who you're going to buy it from to get the best deal, you trust the information, and you check it out for yourself. You crunch the numbers and decide what you want and don't want before even pulling the trigger. Be the same way before you even decide to purchase the engagement ring. When you are educated on diamonds, types of metals, and style of engagement rings, you are able to look much more objectively at the ring as a whole when picking out the perfect engagement ring. You understand what affects price and therefore can be educated on cost before you even step into a store.
3. Be A Cheap Date
This method for saving some quick cash here and there seems like the most obvious, but it usually the most under utilized. Instead of chowing down on dinners at trendy restaurants, going out and ordering fancy drinks, or going to concerts, just do it all but smarter. Groupon and Living Social offer great deals on all of the above, and allow you to still have fun while sneakily saving some cash. Free dates like hiking, making a romantic dinner at home, or visiting your local art shows are a great way to take your significant other out without shelling out major cash.
4. Skip The Big Purchases
This may be the toughest one of the list and requires you to sacrifice the good - and usually much more expensive - things in life. Hold off on that new stereo system for your car or save buying that brand new suit that you know is a little overpriced when it is on sale. Use the money that you would have spent on those purchases towards the engagement ring. Skipping the big purchases usually only hurts for a second and is going to be totally worth it when you see how much she loves her new engagement ring.
5. The $5 Bill Method
We've all heard the stories about how the random dad on the Internet used cash to purchase everything and every time he got a $5 bill, he didn't spend it and immediately put it in his piggy bank. At the end of the year, it funded a vacation for him and his family of four to Disney. I know, it sounds crazy, but there is actual legitimacy to this method. By paying for everything in cash, you become more aware of how much money you are actually spending and are therefore more motivated to save your money. And hey, if any random person on the Internet could do it, you can too.
6. Financing Programs
Sometimes, you can't just wait around saving nickels to afford the ring of her dreams, and we get that. Financing programs are a great alternative to other penny-pinching methods, and there are plenty of options available to you. No interest programs, where you pay a set amount each month – typically 3 to 5% of the original purchase – and then settle the remaining balance with a larger payment on the last month, are very popular. Combining financing along with other methods of payments is also a great way to get her the engagement ring of her dreams. You can check out more information on financing programs and how they work here.