Private jeweler Dan Moran of Concierge Diamonds offers best advice for would-be brides and grooms shopping for engagement rings.
According to popular wedding website The Knot, December is the most popular month to get engaged. But because the average price of an engagement ring in the US is around $5,000 (USD), many future brides and grooms will be feeling the pinch in their wallets, especially around the holiday season. Fortunately, says Dan Moran, private jeweler and President of Concierge Diamonds, Inc. in Los Angeles, there are a few things would-be brides and grooms can do to help get the best bang for their buck when purchasing a diamond engagement ring.
“Many people focus on the 4 C’s when they purchase a diamond,” says Moran. “While all four of these things go hand in hand to determine the cost of a diamond, color, clarity, color and cut, moving up or down in any of those categories can dramatically affect the price of a diamond.”
Moran recommends to his private clients that they not overemphasize clarity as one of the main reasons to purchase a particular diamond, but rather that they focus on the cut of the diamond. Moran explains: “As long as a diamond is clean to the naked eye, why would you spend more? You will more than likely never look at your diamond under a jeweler’s loupe again after you purchase it.”
“But cut,” he continues, “is the one C I advise my clients to never sacrifice on.” He explains: “A diamond’s only job is to sparkle and it’s the cut of the diamond that does that. If you’re considering buying a poorly cut diamond just because it’s cheaper, just buy a piece of glass for $15 and save yourself the trouble. Take a so-so rough diamond and cut it perfectly, and it will look beautiful. Take a top-of-the-line rough diamond and cut it poorly, and it will look like garbage.”
Moran offers these five additional tips for his clients looking to save money a diamond engagement ring this holiday season:
- Buy a diamond, not a certificate. When you purchase a diamond, may ultimately want to get a certificate to accompany your stone. But many people get wrapped up in the notion of purchasing a certificate to accompany a stone. You’re buying a diamond, not a certificate.
- Consider your metal. There are many metal options that vary greatly in price. White gold is less expensive than platinum and rose gold is a popular choice right now. Consider the different options available to you in order to save on your overall costs.
- Don’t buy online. Shopping online can be an overwhelming process because consumers are presented with a multitude of designs. Additionally, while you will save money over what you’d pay at a retail store, you won’t save money like you would by going directly to a diamond dealer. And furthermore, you won’t be buying a diamond – you’ll be buying a certificate; neither you nor the online retailer will have seen the stone in person before you buy it. You want someone with a trained eye to look at your stone before you put down any money for it.
- Avoid paying retail. When you shop retail, you pay retail. Consumers pay for the store’s overhead in the final price of the ring – staff, advertising, lighting, rent, etc. Try working with a diamond dealer to cut out the middle man—this not only reduces the cost a customer will pay for a diamond but ensures the stone has been appraised by someone with a trained eye.
- Design your own custom ring. When consumers purchase a ready-made ring, they are often paying for design elements and extras that they might not necessarily want. Designing a custom ring not only ensures that you have a one-of-a-kind design unique for your future fiancée but that you’re not paying for extras you do not want.
For more tips on selecting a diamond and creating the perfect engagement ring, take a look at our YouTube channel by clicking here.