Jason Biggs is moving on from apple pies to wedding cake. The "American Pie" franchise star, 29, revealed his engagement to actress Jenny Mollen, 28, at the January 29 premiere of his new comedy, "Over Her Dead Body," costarring Eva Longoria. Other stars sporting new sparklers these days include Jessica Alba, who has said she will tie the knot with her fiancé Cash Warren after she gives birth to their child early this summer, and presidential twin Jenna Bush, who just celebrated her engagement with 15 best pals at a White House slumber party.
Planning the perfect engagement moment can be emotionally taxing enough, but if you plan ahead buying the ring will not excessively tax your bank account. Even before you start shopping, start saving. “Start a little savings account for it where you put $100-$200 a week aside for it,” says Cary Carbonaro, a financial planner in New York. Then set a budget of about 10% of your salary, says Carbonaro.
“De Beers tells us to save two months of our salaries, but is that gross or net?” jokes Chris Brown, a financial planner in Maryland. “Seriously, people need to realize that is an ad campaign by a company that controls the diamond industry.” Brown advises that anything over $10,000 is excessive. “Don’t put yourself in the poorhouse, but remember you want to buy something a woman won’t be ashamed to wear 15 years from now.”A good way to save is to avoid financing the ring, says Carbonaro, which means you will not have to pay interest on your purchase. “Save up and try to pay in cash,” she says. “Going to [a place such as] the Diamond District in Manhattan can offer a great deal if you pay in cash.”
An even better way to save is to propose with a family heirloom says Carbonaro. “Grandma’s ring means a lot and you don’t have to spend a lot if you are going to change the size and style. Because of the sentimental value, it is an honor to receive.”
In the end, remember that life is about priorities says Brown.” Lots of people get bamboozled into the two month salary equaling a demonstration of love,” he says. “Do you want that $10,000 to go to the ring or do you want to take $5,000 to spend on the wedding or honeymoon?”