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3 Engagement Ring Financing Options, Including Loans and Credit Cards

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Couples pay an average of $5,500 for an engagement ring, according to WeddingWire’s 2021 Newlywed Report. While paying in cash is the best way to pay for an engagement ring when looking to minimize costs, some young couples may not have that option.

There are a few standard engagement ring financing options, from jewelry store financing to personal loans. Couples should also consider the alternatives, like setting a more realistic budget or proposing with a family heirloom ring.

3 ways to finance an engagement ring

1. Jewelry store financing

Jewelry stores realize that many customers can’t afford to buy an engagement ring in cash, so they offer their own financing options. Many jewelry stores offer in-store credit cards with deferred-interest and reduced-interest financing offers that can save you money when compared with a traditional credit card or personal loan.

Promotional annual percentage rate (APR) financing deals can last for six months or longer, after which the APR will adjust to its normal rate. It’s important to remember that these promotions are typically offered with deferred interest, which means you’ll pay interest from the original purchase date if you don’t pay off your balance within the promotional period.

The table below shows a few national jewelry stores that offer reduced- or no-interest engagement ring financing.

3 jewelry store financing options
Jewelry store credit card Interest rate Special financing
Jared The Galleria Of Jewelry Gold Credit Card 29.99% APR 0% APR or reduced APR for …

  • 12 months: $1,000 minimum purchase with 20% down payment
  • 18 months: $5,000 minimum purchase with 20% down payment
  • 36 months: $3,000 minimum purchase
  • 48 months: $5,000 minimum purchase

Interest will be charged to the purchase date at 29.99% APR if balance is not repaid within timeline.

Kay Jewelers Credit Card 29.99% APR 0% APR or reduced APR for …

  • 12 months: $500 minimum purchase with 20% down payment
  • 36 months: $3,000 minimum purchase

Interest will be charged to the purchase date at 29.99% APR if balance is not repaid within timeline.

Zales The Diamond Card 29.99% APR 0% APR or reduced APR for …

  • 6 months: $300 minimum purchase
  • 12 months: $750 minimum purchase
  • 18 months: $3,000 minimum purchase
  • 36 months: $1,500 minimum purchase

Interest will be charged to the purchase date at 29.99% APR if balance is not repaid within timeline.

APR is a measure of your cost of borrowing and includes the interest rate plus other fees. Available APRs may differ based on your location.

Some jewelry stores, including those in the table above, also offer engagement ring financing through Affirm, a buy now, pay later service that offers point-of-sale loans. Affirm charges between 0% and 30% APR. While some customers may potentially qualify for zero-interest jewelry financing through Affirm, others will have higher APRs.

Do the math: Let’s say you financed a $1,500 engagement ring using Affirm over six months at 20% APR. Your monthly payments would be $265, and you’d end up paying $89 in interest over the life of the loan.

Click here to read our Affirm review

2. Personal loans

Personal loans are lump-sum installment loans that are typically unsecured, which means they don’t require collateral and can be used to pay for virtually anything — including financing an engagement ring. These loans are repaid in fixed monthly payments over a set period, typically a few years.

Small personal loans can be a practical financing choice for people who can’t save up to buy a ring in cash and who don’t want to open a new credit card to use for jewelry store financing. With fixed interest rates and monthly payments, you’ll know exactly how much you owe and when you will pay off your loan.

One downside of using a personal loan to finance an engagement ring is that you’ll pay interest. Interest rates are based partly on your credit score. If you have a fair or poor credit score, there’s a good chance you’ll get stuck with a high interest rate. Many personal loans come with a loan origination fee of 1% to 8% of your loan amount, which is deducted before loan disbursement or added on top of your balance.

How to use a personal loan to pay for an engagement ring

  1. Determine how much you need to borrow. Most personal loans have a minimum loan amount of $1,000. Consider how long you need to repay the loan and what you can afford in monthly payments.
  2. Check your credit score. Personal loan eligibility is heavily based on your financial history, including your credit score. You can check your credit score for free on the LendingTree app.
  3. Prequalify through multiple lenders. Many lenders let you check your loan eligibility with a soft credit check through personal loan prequalification. This can show you your estimated APR without hurting your credit score.
  4. Compare offers and choose a lender. The loan offer with the lowest APR is typically the one that will cost the least amount of money in financing charges, but you should also consider loan amount and loan length when comparing offers.
  5. Formally apply for the loan. Expect to fill out the application online and to be asked for personal information such as your Social Security number and income. You’ll also submit to a hard credit check, which will lower your score temporarily.
  6. Receive loan funding, if approved. Depending on the lender, you may be approved and get your loan funded on the same day you apply or within a few business days. Loan funding is typically deposited right into your bank account.
  7. Pay for your engagement ring. With funds in your bank account, you can use the money to buy an engagement ring.

See personalized offers

3. Credit cards

It’s not advised to put large purchases on a credit card since you’ll pay high interest rates if you don’t pay off the balance by the time the bill is due. However, many credit card issuers offer a 0% introductory APR period to entice new customers. You could potentially utilize one of these offers to avoid paying interest on your purchase altogether.

One drawback to this option is that not all borrowers will qualify for a credit card with an introductory APR promotion. Most of the credit cards that fall into this category require at least a good credit score, which starts at 670.

This can be a practical option for engagement ring financing if you meet the credit score requirements and you know you’ll be able to pay off the total amount before that introductory period ends, typically within 18 months.

Alternatives to financing an engagement ring

You should avoid debt at all costs when you can, so financing an engagement ring really should be your last option. Before you take out debt in the name of love, consider one of the alternatives:

Talk to your partner about a budget

It’s no longer the norm that the person popping the question buys a ring and gets down on one knee without discussing it with their partner. Discussing the ring purchase ahead of time is a good way for couples to get on the same page about their finances as they enter the lifelong financial entanglement of marriage.

Couples who open this line of communication have the opportunity to discuss the engagement ring budget as a team. It can be a part of a larger discussion about your wedding budget and future financial goals.

Take a deep dive into your budget with your partner using the LendingTree app. You can download it for free using the buttons below.

Borrow from friends or family

Depending on your family situation, you may have loved ones who want to contribute to your celebration. If your parent or grandparent wants to chip in for the big day, you may consider asking them to loan (or gift) you the money for the engagement ring. This can help you avoid a credit check and interest charges assessed with a typical lending agreement.

Just be sure you’re clear on how you’ll repay the amount, if you will. Lending between family or friends can be damaging if you fail to pay back what you borrowed.

You could also consider asking your loved ones to give you an heirloom ring to propose with. This can be a heartfelt way to keep family traditions alive, and you’ll save money on an engagement ring along the way.

Consider opting for a more economical ring

While diamonds are still the overwhelming favorite center stone for engagement rings, there are other options on the market that can help reduce the cost of the engagement ring if your partner is on board.

Many engagement rings come equipped with moissanite, sapphire and morganite instead of traditional diamonds. These stones resemble diamonds in clarity and longevity, but they can save you thousands of dollars, too.

Save up months in advance

Once you’ve decided to pop the question, postponing can often feel burdensome. But giving yourself some extra time to save up for the cost of the ring might be the right choice.

An engagement ring is a big investment, but it’s just one of the many expenses you’ll have when it comes to planning a wedding. Allowing yourself the time to save can help to ensure you’re ready for the cost of the engagement ring, as well as the wedding expenses to come.

You can use a budgeting worksheet, like the version below, to make room in your budget for an engagement ring.

Special financing offers current as of date of publishing.

 

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