On average, Americans think you should spend about $2,000 on an engagement ring, though the idea that you have to part with thousands to prove your devotion has also fallen out of style in recent years.
More and more people, especially millennials, agree with "Shark Tank" star Kevin O'Leary, who suggests sidestepping the expense altogether. According to TD Bank's 2017 "Love & Money Survey," 10 percent of survey respondents believe a ring isn't necessary at all.
If you do want a traditional engagement ring, best-selling author and co-founder of AE Wealth Management David Bach offers some simple, straightforward advice: "You should only spend what you can actually afford."
"Don't fall for this idea that you need to be spending six months of what you make on a ring. That's utter nonsense," he says. "I want you to buy a ring that you can afford."
That amount will look different for different people — though, considering most Americans don't even have $1,000 in savings, lots of couples should probably be spending less than they do. In actuality, though, Americans tend to pay more: The average couple spends about $2,800 on an engagement ring.
At the end of the day, what really matters, experts say, is that couples see eye to eye. "If each partner's expectations aren't met or communicated to each other, frustration and disappointment can result that will eat away at the happiness in the relationship," relationship expert Terri Orbuch tells TD Bank.
When the time comes, if you decide to buy an engagement ring, create a budget that makes sense for you, recommends Bach. And start saving. "I don't actually think that anybody goes around saving for a ring," he says. The further you can plan ahead, the better off you'll be: "If you think you're going to get engaged a year from now, then now would be a really good time to be taking money from your paycheck and setting it inside in a ring account."
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