Engagement ring are not cheap. The word cheap alone defies its purpose as a courtship gift. Diamonds and precious metals are an accepted form of wealth and their prices vary from day to day. If a jeweller tells you that their engagement rings are cheaper because they buy gold or diamonds cheaper than the competitors then it is probably not true. The prices of the materials are well classified and hardly negotiable, so the lower price has to come from lowering the size and quality of the stones and/or lowering the weight and purity of precious metal.
How cheap could an engagement ring be?
It all depends on the difference between the cost price of the materials and the labour, and the final retail price. The smaller the difference, the better the price. This is why it is important to ensure that when you compare prices, you are comparing similar rings. Segments which form the price and are worth considering are: size and quality of the main diamond, number and combined weight of the secondary stones, metal type and purity (9k, 18k, platinum, palladium etc.), and projected metal weight. After we have all of the above information we can compare the complicity of the design and the craftsmanship.
What is a good price?
With the current Dollar to Rand rate, engagement rings with costing less than R 7,000 should be considered with caution. Just the VAT on such a ring is R 1,000, so whatever is left should constitute cost and profit. In precious metals and diamonds this is not much. Do not trust a jeweller if he tells you he is not making profit by selling a ring with such a huge discount; no one stays in this business for fun. With the diamond engagement rings there is a balance between low cost and value for money. The look of the ring and the size of the diamond/s must greatly exceed the expectations pertinent to your budget frame. This is when I consider my job as a designer and jeweller well done.