If you are on a hunt for a good-quality diamond ring that gives the best deal for your buck, here is what you need to know to go about it.
A Good Time for Diamond Deals
The majority of diamond rings are bought as engagement rings and anniversary rings. However, a lot of women buy this most coveted gemstone for themselves as fashion-oriented pieces. There are new sources of mined diamonds hitting the global market and that make for competitive pricing from a broad range of diamonds from the low-end to the high-end variety.
Save by Knowing the “Four Cs”
A rule of thumb for spending on a diamond ring is the equivalent of two-month salary. But you should be guided by your own financial situation and not on high-pressure sales pitches or social pressure when determining what you can afford.
For a good deal when buying a diamond ring, follow the 4Cs which refer to carat, clarity, color and cut that characterize the quality of a diamond. This is the GIA’s diamond-grading system that has become the industry standard for jewelers.
A basic understanding of these grades before making a purchase will help you save your money.
Carat refers to a diamond’s weight. The price of a diamond increases according to an increase in weight. Hence, for those on a tight budget should exclude a one-carat diamond from the price range. Instead, going for a 0.5 carat diamond could save you a large amount of money. What’s more, slight differences in weights of diamonds when they are mounted are considerably negligible, though will cost noticeably less.
In a white diamond, the colour measures the closeness of the diamond to white. The highest grades of D, E and F are meant for the colorless diamonds and are taken as the premium as they allow for the greatest reflection of light resulting in the most dramatic sparkle. Z is the lowest grade on this scale.
Going down the scale with an H, I, J or K rated stone, the price drops within 25% and 35% from the premium, though they still look good.
The 11-grade clarity scale of GIA tells about the blemishes of a diamond, both within and outside. The ratings of grade range from F for flawless (an extreme rarity) to Included 3, or 13 and this is taken as the lowest available clarity grade. However, a diamond whose grade is below the highest grades can still look luminous. Going for a lower-clarity stone, like SI1 and SI2, will save you a large amount of money.
According to experts, it is the cut that has a huge influence on the reflective qualities of a diamond. One certainly does not want to compromise on this quality. A well-cut diamond has a good sparkle that gives it its brilliance. Select a cut among the two top ratings, “excellent” and “very good” on the GIA scale and try to stay away from “good”, “fair” and “poor” cuts. Although, the cost of “excellent” and “very good” will be about 10% more than a “good” one, it makes sense to save on the other of 4Cs.
Ask For Diamond Grading Reports
While shopping, if you find a specific stone interesting, ask the retailer about a diamond-grading report that shows an assessment of the four Cs of the particular diamond. The grading report provides an impartial evaluation of the quality of a diamond, and is a true representation of what you are getting.