A few short nights ago I was stunlocked by a fascinating radio interview with a car salesman discussing car buying myths and tips. First lesson; take the bare amount of extras - they’re completely worthless when you resell the vehicle. Second lesson; when you’re seriously (like, really really) in buyer-mode negotiate prices during the last weekend of the month. Most car dealerships have tough targets to meet and usually only make their targets with last minute sales they push through by offering considerable discounts to end-of-the-month-last-minute-buyers. Be the last deal.
I thought it would be awesome if we did an engagement ring variation of this interview with some of our knowledgeable employees.
So... I asked two of our more experienced consultants for their answers to 5 questions I think everyone can benefit from. I hope you enjoy!
Question 1: The internet has been flooded by a tsunami of poorly written fictional articles presented as fact. Name one common myth you have to deal with regularly?
Juanice: “I would have to go with small diamonds being “diamond chips” or the like. We’re jewellers and not a fast food restaurant. The small diamonds we use in our rings are round brilliant cut diamonds, with all 58 facets.”
Samantha: Some people think palladium is some weird new metal. Palladium has been with us forever and has been utilised in industries since around 1800. When jewellers employ the right equipment (including a laser welder), palladium is definitely one of the best metals you can use for an engagement ring! Please keep in mind that an engagement ring is most probably the first piece of jewellery your loved one will wear every single day - choosing the right metal is crucial.
Question 2: Online diamond colour and clarity charts are inaccurate. You’ve seen more than a few diamonds. What’s the best value colour and clarity combination?
Juanice: “If you prefer a white diamond for your engagement ring I would suggest you opt for an I or J colour. Clarity-wise SI1 and SI2 offer great value for money. SI1 and SI2 clarities usually don’t have prominent inclusions that are visible to the naked eye, and the ones that have tiny visible inclusions can often be set in a way that the inclusions are no longer visible. Online diamond shoppers take heed: It’s always best to physically see the diamond you’re interested in before purchasing. I’d like to add that colour and clarity does not affect the “shininess” of the diamond, this has very little to do with the colour and everything to do with the quality of the cut.”
Samantha: “Definitely I/J colour, and SI1 or SI2 clarity, it is clean to the naked eye and doesn’t appear yellow.”
(Click here to download our 4C's e-book if you're not 100% sure what all the colour and claritie lingo means)
Question 3: Let’s talk about metals… white gold, platinum or palladium? (No budgetary concern…)
Juanice: “Without a doubt palladium. It’s an amazing metal for any jewellery piece and especially one that’s worn every single day. Palladium is a white (silver looking) metal, it’s hypo-allergenic, and not plated with any substance– it just stays white. It has all the great characteristics of platinum, but it’s slightly lighter in colour and weighs less than platinum. It’s a hard/strong metal so your diamonds are safe, but it’s still light for a comfortable fit.”
Samantha: “Agreed. Without a sliver of doubt… palladium!”
“We’ve got a lot of sharks out there.” - Cypress Hill.
Question 4: Any words of caution for engagement ring shoppers?
Juanice: “Unfortunately this statement is true. I would suggest you check your jeweller of choice’s references. At Poggenpoel.com we have a public Facebook Page filled with testimonials. It’s very important to us that all our clients are happy and satisfied with the level of service and the quality of our products. We don’t strive to be the cheapest – we strive to be the best.
Please don’t go shopping for the cheapest jeweller. Do your research thoroughly. There’s a “trust element” involved when choosing your jeweller. If you felt uncomfortable after having a cup of coffee at the jeweller’s premises… run!”
Samantha: “Make sure you do not get over-charged due to incorrect diamond grading certificates. To ensure you’re receiving what paid for, opt for a GIA certified diamond with the certificate number laser engraved on the girdle of the diamond. A lot of jewellers are charging full-price for diamonds that have been erroneously over-graded.
On the trust issue I agree with Juanice; find a jeweller that you feel comfortable with. You have to be able to trust your jeweller.”
Question 5: Your best friend is shopping for an engagement ring. Whats your best insider tip?
Juanice: “Always make sure there’s a 100% satisfaction guarantee in place. Jewellers with these guarantees are confident in the quality of their products and level of workmanship, so you’re probably in safe hands. If you’re not happy with the end product you can just reclaim your deposit.”
Samantha: “Do your research and take your time to consider all of your options. Someone’s going to wear this ring for the rest of her life and should feel proud doing so. There is no need to rush. Good luck!”
Thanks ladies! Ok - back to me.
Ladies and gentlemen... knowledge is power. A little bit of reading can save you a lot of money. Here are links to our top 4 most read blog posts to get you started:
- The Most Popular Engagement Ring Designs Of 2014
- How Much Should You Spend On An Engagement Ring?
- White Gold Vs. Palladium (A Very Unfair Fight)
- Engagement Ring Prices - A Guide
For more tips and information on super common engagement ring mistakes download our e-book: "Top 10 Engagement Ring Mistakes" HERE.