Thursday, April 23, 2009

Purchasing a Diamond Engagement Ring: Part III

This is the third of a three part post which I give you my whole story of purchasing a diamond ring for my now fiancé. This post describes how I am using a credit card to buy the diamond ring.

One of the most important thought process is thinking about what you, as a couple can afford (even though you are paying for it). One of the last things you want to do  in this new phase of your life is begin with new debt or more debt. This is very hard to consider when you have a PR scam that says that the cost of an engagement ring should at least be 2 months salary and that you want to give them the best. I took a hard look at my fiances and choose a price range that was slightly higher than I had saved up for but realized that I would just have to be tighter with my budget...but I could afford it. I would say to anyone who is nervous that their someone special wants an expensive ring that you cannot afford, is to have in place a special way of letting them know that if money wasn't an object that you would give them the world. You are going to be with them forever and money is going to be a huge part of your marriage so don't start off on the wrong foot. You can always upgrade a diamond 5yr, 10yr, and so on for anniversaries if you like.

One of my problems I had was how was I going to actually pay for this purchase, cash, credit, or financing. I started saving up for the ring a little late but when I got serious about it I really tighten my buckle and beefed up my "wedding ring fund" every paycheck. At the time I was saving for the vacation trip as well, so I wished I would have started saving earlier...dont we always say that. I had, sitting in my "wedding ring fund" about 1/3 of the cost I had budgeted and I had the other 2/3 sitting in my saving account that I did not really wanted to tap into, especially in these economic times. I have 2 credit cards that are fully paid off and are only used for points. I started to look for credit cards with 0% APR for the first 12 months and found the one I wanted. I have great credit, so fortunately I was able to open it up and put the ring on the card. So this might not seem like a good idea but here is my full thought process of why I decided to put it on plastic.

1) I knew that it would help my credit and with trying to purchase a house later this year every bit helps these days. (I know I could still use credit to purchase and pay it in full so I don't have any debt.)

2) I could write a check and pay it off today if I needed to. Meanwhile my money is sitting in a high yield saving account with ING Direct. So I am borrowing money interest free and making money off the interest I am making in the saving account. 

3)My monthly payment is 2.5% of the remaining balance on the credit card so I only pay the minimum every month. I am acting as if I am sending the full amount by sending the 2.5% to the credit card and putting the remaining into a savings account which is creating some interest for me. On the 12 month I will cut a check for the remaining balance that is left on the credit card from my savings account. At the end of the day I am borrowing money interest free to invest for a 2% return.

Just as an example, let just say the ring cost $1000.00. Divide that by 12 months, around $83.30 a month. My credit card payment is 2.5% of that, so it is about $25.00/month. I send the remaining $58.30 to my saving account to make interest for me. So at the end of twelve months I have paid  around $300.00 to the credit card and have made interest off the remaining $700 sitting in the saving account. I write the check for the remaining 700 and have a few dollars from the interest I made.

4) With borrowing  interest free I can still have more cash on hand if something were to happen to my employment.

So there you have it, overall I would say that it is a very nervous, exciting , and really cool experience for purchasing something that is a) so important and b) so expensive. These three post might sound like I am just concerned with spending money on something that is very materialistic, I am just giving you my personal experience. Just remember that at the end of the day, if you can not afford a diamond, it is ok. It's not so much about the diamond but about your love and the statement to their family and friends by saying, 'I have found the one person I am ready to settle down with and start a new life with.' I hope you have gain some inside knowledge with making that next step, so please leave comments and suggestions to others.



  1. I think that throwing it on a credit card is smart indeed - good work. I did the same thing, but luckily the store I picked it up from offered 0% financing for 12 months, so it was a no brainer ;) just divided up all payments equally and it was gone by the time the year came.

  2. beautiful ring, sounds like you put a lot of thought into it!