If you and your partner have been together for quite a while and you’re looking into taking your relationship to the next level, you might also be thinking about purchasing an engagement ring for your proposal. Your finances might not be the first thing you would think about when you are about to ask the question, but you will surely think about them. It’s because engagement rings and the wedding ceremony that follows are among the most expensive purchases in people’s lives. Therefore, it is essential that you start the right way.
One of the cheapest ways to pay for an engagement ring is with savings. However, in reality, not all people who want to propose to their loved ones have savings for the ring. Others are reserving their money for the big day, as well as for starting a family. If this is the case for you, there are other engagement ring financing options that you can consider. Among those is taking out a loan and paying for the ring on a monthly basis.
However, keep in mind that loans usually have interests that can make your expenses bigger. Therefore, you also need to consider certain factors that may help decrease your monthly expenses for the ring. In this post, we are going to give you the different ways how to reduce the monthly payment for an engagement ring.
Things You Need to Avoid When Financing Your Engagement Ring
As you search for the best financing option for your engagement ring, you need to ensure that you fully understand the benefits and potential drawbacks of each of them. Always remember that finance companies are businesses whose goal is to make money. To help you, here are some of the things that you need to avoid in order to not spend more than you need to:
0% APR Introductory Rates
There are credit card companies that offer the first 6- or 12-months interest-free when you open a new card. This may sound like a great offer, but you should also learn about deferred interest. It is a sneaky kind of interest as it is accruing in the background during the period that has no interest. Once the promotional period ends and you have a balance, you will need to pay interest on your whole original balance.
Zero-percent offers can work well for some shoppers, especially if you have lots of saving and good money management skills. It’s because you can plan your payments to make sure that you pay off your balance in time. However, if there is an unexpected expense that comes, such as a trip to the doctor, that can throw off your payment plan, making this type of financing quite risky.
Credit Cards with Low Interest
There are also jewelry stores that offer a low-interest credit card option. These have interest rates that are below the national average credit card rate of 17%, which is mostly around 8 to 10%. These credit cards also have a much longer promotional period, usually 24 to 60 months. However, these also come with drawbacks. For instance, if you make a late payment or if you fail to pay off your whole balance within the promotional period, the interest rate can jump to 28 to 30%.
In addition to that, the other issue is minimum payments. In each billing cycle, the credit card company sets a minimum amount that is needed to be paid. This is usually one or 2% of the total balance. When you only make the minimum payment, it can help you save money in the short term, but it could also get you stuck into a debt cycle. It’s because the longer you take to pay off the balance, the more interest it accrues. This may lead to your monthly interest being bigger than the monthly minimum payment. Therefore, even if you pay monthly, the balance still increases.
No Credit Check “Financing”
These are the companies that lease your engagement ring to you and give you a choice to buy it within 90 days at its original price or pay a large markup for more than 12 months by charging you leasing fees. This can be equivalent to around 200% APR, which is illegal in most states. With this, lease-to-own operations can’t legally call their setup “financing.” However, they can attract customers who have poor credit. But you need to avoid these as most of them hide the real terms of the lease or misrepresent the number of monthly payments. Sometimes, they continue to charge for purchases that have been returned or paid off.
Fees are indeed a headache, particularly if the financing company does not have a transparent policy. One of the common fees that you need to look out for is the late fee. No matter what financing option you pick, you need to plan your payments carefully. Ask yourself if you have enough extra money to make payments each month. See if your other billing schedules will get in the way. This way, you will be able to avoid late fees.
There are also other fees to look out for, such as returned payment fees and origination fees. These can make your monthly payments larger, making you spend more than save money when you purchase an engagement ring.
How to Reduce Monthly Payments for an Engagement Ring
Here are some of the best things that you can follow in order to reduce your ring monthly payment:
Use your credit card to buy an engagement ring the smart way.
This is the most common method to buy an engagement ring if you do not have any savings to spend on it. They are the most convenient for a lot of people to make large purchases. However, they are also expensive due to high-interest rates. Credit cards let borrowers make small minimum payments that increase the length of time it takes to pay off the debt. Therefore, if you plan to use your credit card in purchasing an engagement ring but you also want to save money, you have to use it responsibly.
We’ve mentioned earlier that some credit cards offer promotions wherein new customers can get a 0% interest rate on new purchases for 12 months or even longer. This could also work well if you open a new credit card before you make the big purchase. It’s because most cards provide a sign-up bonus if you spend a certain amount within the first three months.
Therefore, if you are sure that you can pay off the engagement ring before the promotional APR expires, then a credit card is the best choice to save money. Some even use their credit cards even if they have the cash to buy the ring. It’s because you can leave the case in your savings account and let it earn interest. You can also earn rewards from the credit card when you make the purchase, which can also help lessen your monthly payment.
Look for a jeweler that offers 0% interest for financing an engagement ring.
There are jewelers that have their own in-house financing options that offer 0% financing. Some of them may require a minimum purchase amount, while some may need you to make a cash down payment. However, it is essential that you know that the 0% interest rate may only be in effect for a certain period, just like in credit cards.
Know the terms and make a plan.
In order to reduce the monthly payment for your engagement ring, it is essential to pay off your balance quickly, no matter what financing option you choose. Ensure that you pay the balance within the length of time specified. This way, you will avoid having the interest deferred, which may lead to late fees and other additional fees.
Alternatives to Financing an Engagement Ring
If you really want to save money on your engagement ring, you can also look into other alternatives instead of financing. Here are a few examples:
Check out online retailers and compare them with physical stores.
Keep in mind that online jewelry retailers do not pay for rent like traditional physical stores. This means that online sellers can offer engagement rings for lower prices. In addition to that, there is usually a larger selection of rings to choose from online. You can try to explore some online options, make a virtual appointment with sellers, meet with a jeweler in a virtual showroom and see what deals you can make.
Try to consider pre-owned rings.
Another alternative is buying pre-owned rings if this is not an issue for you. If you are open to purchasing a used ring, then there are lots of good deals out there. Once the ring is polished, no one will ever know that it has been used.
When it comes to financing an engagement ring, you need to take an honest look at your budget. This way, you can do your research and find the best deals and make a plan to pay it off as fast as possible. Better yet, if you really want to save money, start saving for your dream ring and pay it in cash soon. We hope this post helped you learn more about the ways to reduce the monthly payment for an engagement ring.