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Selling an engagement ring? Avoid these mistakes as prices drop

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California divorced mom Marissa Forrester's 1.5 carat diamond engagement ring had a retail value of $10,000 in 2012. Eleven years later in 2023, she sold it online for a quarter of that — $2,500.

“I thought I'd get something close to $5,000 or $6,000,” Forrester told me. “I was disappointed, but glad to finally get rid of it!”

While the resale value of a diamond has always been very low — 50% or even far less — prices have plummeted in the last two years as inexpensive lab-grown diamonds compete with natural stones, and the global economy is depressed.

While it may be disappointing to sell such an expensive item for such a small sum, it may make sense to sell now before prices drop even further.

Keep reading to learn:

Common mistakes women make when selling an engagement ring

  1. Waffle about whether to sell or keep your engagement ring
  2. Assume your ring is worth more than it is
  3. Try to sell your ring without documentation
  4. Take the first offer for your engagement ring

Best places to sell an engagement ring

  1. Pawn shops
  2. Diamonds USA
  3. Worthy
  4. Diamond Banc

FAQs about selling an engagement ring

  1. Can I legally sell my engagement ring?
  2. Should I get my engagement ring appraised before selling?
  3. How much will I get if I sell my diamond ring?
  4. How much will a jeweler pay for an engagement diamond ring?

Common mistakes women make when selling an engagement ring

Most jewelry is a gift, and therefore an emotional possession — even if the gold, diamond or other material is really just a commodity. Engagement rings are the most emotional of all.

Before you figure out how and where to sell your engagement ring, let's knock out some common emotional barriers that may be standing in the way:

1. Waffle about whether to sell or keep your engagement ring

I meet a lot of women who hold on to their engagement rings for a years, which in this market, means that they are losing money every day — all while holding on to a momento from what was likely a sad breakup.

Others similarly hold on to their ring for their children to use for their own engagement ring one day. I try not to judge, but that is nothing but bad mojo.

Others repurpose the center stone of their engagement ring into a necklace or other jewelry. Many seem happy with that choice, but again — there are plenty of other diamonds that don't carry the negative baggage of your divorce.

In general, women are happier once they get rid of their engagement rings — whether they sell (and use the funds to pay off debt, go on vacation, invest in a business or education), or, in the case of Mallory in Oregon, climbed the summit of a local mountain, wrapped the ring in a scrunchie and tossed it off a cliff. “Never felt better,” she told me.

2. Assume your ring is worth more than it is

This post spells out how to understand what your engagement ring is really worth on the resale market. Dig into that ASAP — know what you are dealing with.

Word to the wise from Jessica in Lumberton, N.C.:

I thought about keeping my bridal set for my kids. However, I know there are a lot of superstitious people in our world. Plus, there was no way of knowing if either of my children would want the rings. So I finally decided to sell them to a pawn shop, mainly because my ex was not helping financially.

The pawnshop owner told me the diamonds are fake and they're not even quality crystals! So I asked about selling the set for the gold scrap value. They tell me it's gold-plated!

I was mad, but I didn't know if my ex knew or if he was scammed. The jewelers where he bought the rings had closed down because people were finding out when they were bringing in real diamond jewelry to be sized or cleaned that their real diamonds were being taken out and were replaced with fake cheaply made stones. I went to another pawn shop and jewelry store hoping that the first place was wrong, but that was not the case. I did find someone that would take the set, but I literally got $10 for it, which at least replaced the gas I had burned going to all the different places for quotes. 

How to tell if your gold is real

One of the reasons many women choose not to sell their engagement ring is that the price they are quoted from a jeweler or auction site is much lower than what they believe their ring is worth.

There are several reasons diamonds lose so much value:

  1. Wholesale ring buyers need to make a profit when they resell your ring or earrings, so they like to buy low.
  2. Diamond values are down at least 30% from their peak in summer 2022.
  3. A common misunderstanding is that the engagement ring owner believes that, for example, she has a 1-carat engagement ring, when in reality, the center stone is .5 carats, and the surrounding smaller stones total .5 carats. Most jewelers or ring buyers value the smaller stones very little — perhaps less than $100 total in this case — and are only interested in the center stone.

Diamonds do not hold their value the same way that commodities like gold and silver do. Typically, the resale value of diamond jewelry is 30% to 50% of what you paid for it. 

One online diamond buyer told me that the resale value can be as little as 5%.

“People are always surprised by how little their diamond is worth, but diamond retail prices have always been inflated, and now prices are dropping like crazy,” he said.

Prices have fallen nearly 30% since their peak in summer 2022, according to IDEX, which tracks global diamond trends:

IDEX May 4, 2024 report.
IDEX May 4, 2024 report.

3. Try to sell your ring without documentation

Now, many people, especially those with smaller stones, do not have a proper diamond appraisal, and that is OK.

Nonetheless, do your best to learn everything you can about what your diamond is worth. If you have a GIA certificate for your engagement ring or other lab report, the original box, receipt, and any documentation of the size and quality of the stones and metal, send or bring it with you when you sell.

The resale value of your engagement ring depends on the size, cut, clarity and color of the stone, as well as the market value of the precious metal in which it is set. Plus, yours might be worth more if it's from a designer jewelry brand. All of these can be documented in a lab report or even a jewelry appraisal or diamond appraisal

These reports typically cost between $100 and $300, so they're only worth it if your item is worth at least $1,000.

4. Take the first offer for your engagement ring

It's always worthwhile to get at least two offers for your engagement ring (or any jewelry for that matter).

You can always start with a quote from a jewelry store, diamond buyer, or local pawn shop. 

No matter where you end up selling — even if you are not a skilled negotiator, the buyer will typically respond to your suggestion for a higher price. As my mom used to say: They won't respect you unless you negotiate!

It’s easy to obtain multiple offers from online diamond buyers. Here's how the process typically works:

  1. Online diamond buyers will ask you for some basic information about your engagement ring, either online or over the phone.
  2. They'll give you an initial estimate, either via email or over the phone.
  3. A quality online buyer will send a free FedEx, UPS, or USPS mailer that includes insurance (you should be able to track your item all the way to the buyer — and back if you decide not to sell).
  4. The diamond buyer will make a final offer after evaluating your engagement ring in person, which you can accept or reject. Again: negotiate! Many of the top diamond buyers offer payouts within 24 hours or less.

Best places to sell a diamond engagement ring

Based on our criteria and extensive research in the diamond-buying space, we've determined these are the four best options for selling your ring, based on what makes the most sense for you:

  • Pawn shop: Where to sell diamonds for immediate cash
  • DiamondsUSA: Best place to sell most wedding and engagement rings online
  • Worthy: Good choice for designer engagement rings
  • Diamond Banc: Best way to get cash without selling your engagement ring (jewelry loans)

Keep reading to learn about each of these options:

Best place to sell your diamond engagement ring for immediate cash: Local pawn broker near you

Pawnshops can have a bad reputation for paying pennies on the dollar. There are many local pawnbrokers that are honest, reputable business and will pay you a fair price for your diamond — or extend a pawn loan, allowing you to maintain ownership of your diamond and secure a short-term loan if you need money.

Pros:

  • Immediate cash
  • Do business with a local company in your community
  • Possibility of pawn loan

Cons:

  • Unlikely to get highest price for your engagement ring

This post outlines how to find a reputable, legit pawnshop in your community, and sell for the highest price (tip: know the value of your ring and always negotiate).

Find a pawnbroker near you:

google-maps-usa-image

Best place to sell most diamond engagement rings: Diamonds USA

Selling your engagement ring to a local jeweler or pawn shop may give you quick cash, which is important to a lot of people. However, local jewelry buyers typically pay less than online buyers — plus also require you to leave your house (annoying), and have a much less private process than online diamond buyers.

DiamondsUSA is one of the best gold and jewelry buyers on the market and buys any and all sizes of gold and diamond jewelry, including lab-grown diamonds. We also like Diamonds USA because:

  • A+ BBB rating
  • Payouts within 24 hours of an accepted offer
  • Fully insured shipments from your home
  • Guarantee they will beat any written price for your engagement ring

Most other buyers require a minimum size and value of diamond engagement ring or loose diamond, typically .5 carats and $1,000.

These are some recent Diamond USA sales:

January 2024 — White gold engagement ring set with 1.29 carat center stone with a clarity I1 with color J-K w strong fluorescence, paid $1,500:

You can sell an engagement ring on CashforGold, like this 2.89 total carat weight ring, which sold for $903.

January 2024 — 1.16 total carat weight engagement ring set, paid $445:


January 2024 — 1.78 total carat weight engagement ring set, paid $550:


January 2024 — 2.89 total carat weight engagement ring set, paid $903:

DiamondsUSA is also a good option for selling gold and platinum wedding rings. Actually, DiamondsUSA and its sister sites, CashforGoldUSA and CashforSilverUSA, can help you sell the following:

  • Diamond engagement ring with a center stone of any size
  • Wedding ring with lots of small diamonds in the setting (known as melee diamonds)
  • Engagement ring with small diamonds or other gemstones in the setting
  • All other diamond, gold, gemstone, or even silver jewelry, coins and bullion

Where to sell a designer engagement ring: Worthy

If you have something that’s high value because you have large diamonds or a designer engagement ring (Tiffany & Co, Cartier, Harry Winston, Van Cleef & Arpels, etc.), and you don't need the money immediately, consider Worthy.

Worthy accepts engagement rings if the largest diamond is at least 0.90 carat in weight and auctions them to a network of more than 1,000 professional buyers.

These are some recent auction payouts for engagement rings on Worthy.com:

March 2024 — 0.97-1.08 carat princess cut bridal set, sold for $1,450


March 2024 — 1.5 carat round cut bridal set, sold for $3,193


March 2024 — 2.07 carat round cut solitaire ring, sold for $8,000

Check out my Worthy review to learn more about my personal experience selling an engagement ring with the auction platform.

Where to get cash for your engagement ring without selling: Diamond Banc

If you need to get the most money for your engagement ring today, but you don’t really want to sell it, then consider a jewelry loan from Diamond Banc. A jewelry loan allows you to send in your engagement ring (or other jewelry) as collateral against a loan, in exchange for interest.

Learn more about how jewelry loans work and read our Diamond Banc review.

Moissanite vs diamond: What to know about resale value in 2023

Cubic zirconia vs diamonds: What to know before you buy

FAQs about selling an engagement ring

Can I legally sell my engagement ring?

In all states, any item that was gifted to you, you own. Typically, an engagement ring is a gift from one person to the other — the receiver of the ring in this case has full legal ownership and has the right to sell, trade or trash it.

Should I get my engagement ring appraised before selling?

An appraisal from a local jeweler is useful for insurance resale value, or perhaps to understand the quality of your engagement ring. A lab report can be very helpful in selling your engagement ring, or for getting a loan against your ring, but will cost $100 to $300, so this only makes sense for more valuable items.

How much will I get if I sell my diamond ring? How much is a diamond worth?

Your engagement ring is worth the current market price for the diamond and metal.

The real value in selling your wedding or engagement ring or other jewelry you don’t wear is that it frees up all that negative energy attached to the item, stewing indefinitely in your jewelry box. It felt good to rid my home and mind of that significant marriage memento.

Even if you loved the ring, loved your ex, loved being married, love any kids that came from that union (yes, yes, yes, yes for me), it is time to move on and free the mental energy attached to the ring — not to mention the money!

How much will a jeweler pay for an engagement diamond ring or wedding ring set?

A jeweler will likely pay you anywhere from 5% to 50% of the retail value of your ring, similar to pawn shops. Again, this may be less than what you would get from an online buyer, as a jeweler will have a higher markup. Shop around to ensure you get the best price and always negotiate. 

A 1-carat diamond and gold engagement ring will fetch resale prices ranging from $1,000 to $5,000, depending on the cut, quality and setting. Platinum setting and large side stones can mean higher prices, as can name brands like Tiffany or Cartier.

Bottom line: Is it worth it to sell an old engagement ring?

A couple years after my divorce, I sold my engagement ring and wedding band at a fine jewelry buyer in New York City, where I lived.

I only received a fraction of what my now ex-husband and I paid for it, but I felt I got a fair price and used the proceeds to fund a trip my kids took to Europe with their dad to visit family — which I felt good about.

You can get a quote for your engagement ring within a day at DiamondsUSA.

How about you? Do you still have your engagement ring? Do you feel you understood the true resale value of your jewelry?

Share in the comments!

Where can I sell my engagement ring for the most money?

Selling your engagement ring to a local jeweler or pawn shop may give you quick cash, which is important to a lot of people. However, brick-and-mortar jewelry buyers typically pay less than online buyers, so I recommend considering a reputable diamond buyer online.

Do engagement rings hold their value?

While over time, diamonds have historically risen in value from a retail price point, do not expect to get your money back on an engagement ring. Typically, resale value of fine gemstone jewelry is one-third to one-half of what you pay for it. Diamond prices have been declining over the past year.

How much can you sell an engagement ring for?

A 1-carat diamond and gold engagement ring will fetch resale prices ranging from $1,000 to $5,000, depending on the cut, quality and setting. Large side stones can mean higher prices, as can name brands like Tiffany or Cartier.

How much will a jeweler pay for a diamond ring?

A jeweler will likely pay you anywhere from 20% to 50% of the retail value of your ring. Shop around to ensure you get the best price.

Should you sell your engagement ring?

Overall, I am a huge fan of selling your engagement ring in the event that your relationship ends, and I did so myself. Diamond prices are declining, so best to sell now before your ring is worth less in the future.

154 Comments

Great article! It’s important to find a GIA Certified Diamond Buyer and Grader. For any of your readers who are in the Florida area, we have been in the diamond buying business since 1945 and we can help ensure that they get the best value when they sell their estate diamond jewelry.

I sold mine this past spring to pay for my son’s summer camp. I have to say I am glad it is gone. I too thought I would give it to my son some day to give to his future bride. Why? A sign of a failed marriage! No thanks. He deserves something fresh! Pretty funny story. My x’s sitter sold him the diamond. If the stories are true- she actually made him over pay by $10,000. Ha! i didn’t get that much for it but I got way more than I would have selling it to a shop. I sold it to my neighbor who is a diamond dealer. In the end, glad “it went to my son” xo

Thank you so much for letting me know I helped. I wish you and your wonderful girlfriend, soon to be wife all the best in your life! –

Where would you start with a Tiffany band?

Ebay has one for 1700 but who knows if that’s high ball & will just sit….. I’m planning on watching. Since it’s a high-end brand I am hoping to take a fast, high dollar route.

it is a very useful post to those girls who want to sell their diamonds rings after divorce or any other problem. they can get tips through this post that what things they should follow to sell diamond jewelry and get profit with that deal.

When you are ready to sell and engagement ring, look into DiamondLighthouse.com. You want to get the most money from your diamond sale and the solution is to put it up for auction with a network of professional diamond dealers and jewelers placing competing bids. Diamond Lighthouse has opened up the expert diamond market so the public can get fair value for their diamond jewelry.

In my first engagement, I had a beautiful 3.5 total carat diamond ring. He was caught cheating multiple times and I broke off the engagement. I caught a lot of flack from men-friends and co-workers on how wrong I was for not returning the ring. I look at as compensation for time served! If we had decided to part amicably because we weren’t ready for marriage, I would have gladly given it back as he went into debt to buy it. BUT…since he decided to be a dog about it, I kept it and went on to use the proceeds to put a down payment on my first home! BOOYAH!!!

Michelle – that is a funny story in a way, but men don’t owe us financial compensation because they’re dogs. That is why no-fault divorces prevail — to decouple relationship drama from the financial realities of divorce.

Terrible attitude, pretending you are entitled to some sort of compensation when you are not and just really wanted the money.

She was cheated on multiple times and treated terribly by that man and she’s the one with the bad attitude? I find her attitude very positive. Instead of dwelling on the pain, she moved forward doing what was best for her after wasting time on a creep that put his wants ahead of the woman he was engaged to. Gary, you seem to think that engagement rings are owned by men and are like a retractable leash they attach to the woman they are engaged too. Or like a car lease. Shame on you for putting down women who don’t subscribe to the same opinion as you.

Mere rationalization — whatever the circumstances, she’d be keeping the ring considering it compensation.

News for you, RC: the law says an engagement ring purchased by the man is supposed to be returned. If he had sued, he would have won.

My ex and I just call of the engagement. We have been engaged for 2.5 years and it hurts like crazy. I still have the 1 Carat Diamond Solitaire ring in 10 Carat white gold. I am not sure if I want to sell it or not. I paid 2 grand for the ring and if sold, would want to get at least half my money back. Am I think realistically or should I just keep it?

Get rid of it, though don’t expect to get 50% ROI. The market is the market – send the ring to the service mentioned here, or check with your local jeweler. Free yourself so you can move on to new love! You deserve it!

Just curios as to why it’s hard to get what a diamond originally cost? I have always thought diamonds were good investments and usually don’t ” get old” so why should you take less?

Im struggling with what to do with my ring… I married at age 30 to a man far too fast, not a bad guy, but NOT my guy. He gave me a fake silver ring to propose with telling me it was a family heirloom, and I wore it for a while until the stones started to pop out. This wasnt a big deal to me, because I planned to design my own ring eventually (Did I mention that I am a jewelry designer specializing in engagement rings?!)…. anyhow, come to find out after our elopement that not only was the ring not a famiily heirloom, that he had bought it and proposed to his ex girlfriend with it…. she never wore it, but it was tainted.

So now there were lies attached to the damn thing! I pushed myself to finally figure out the ring I wanted, and let me tell you, it is BEAUTIFUL…. Platinum, diamonds all over, looks truly vintage, huge gorgeous center stone…. I put SO MUCH WORK AND THOUGHT into my design, and I myself designed every line of the ring….

Fast forward to now… needless to say I got tired of lies in my marriage, and now my divorce is pending and I am dating someone new. Is it time to unload the thing? I am “in the biz” so I can sell it pretty competitively and make some cash, but I do still LOVE the look of the damn thing! I would wear it on my right hand and love it because its MY DESIGN but I think my new BF would be hurt or uncomfortable, yet I dont want to make the decision to sell it because of pressure to please him… or maybe I do…? Help!

Did you design it in a CAD program or still have your drawings, specs? You could make a new ring, just for you, with the design and different finishes… Use your stone in a new piece if you do not want to part with it… Or modify your design to be a pendant, or a bracelet… (I used to be a bridge jewelry designer/manufacturer)…

I’m surprised how non-black-and-white laws are regarding marital rings. In general, it seems unless a ring belonged to the ex’s family, it’s the wife’s to keep as it was a “pre-marital” gift. Engagmement rings, by nature are “pre-marital”…but NOT ALWAYS. I was married for 27 years. We had met in college and bought a $1000 rig from our joint account. My husband’s business thrived …and we lived well below our means (thanks to him, had no idea of $$$ until we split) and decades after he could afford it….I got, for CHRISTMAS (“and valentines, and anniversary, and birthday as most gifts covered years of gift obligations in his eyes) a really nice really PRICEY new ring. Unlike a lot of the micro pave and halo stuff that add carats but little value, I have found that a simple high quality solitaire stone is much more valuable in resell market (lucky for me) at one point during the divorce he petitioned to have my jewelry (all of it….all pieces that would constitute a year or two’s worth of jewelry) included in the property split. Now, engagement rings are pretty secure (unless previously belonging to groom’s family) but “remounts or upgraded ENGAEMENT rings can, come into play when dividing assets. The fact these were also “gifts” really doesn’t mean they are the wife’s property exclusively. I refused, told him if a judge mandated I would do it (of course) but he wanted no part of going in front of judge. Everyone asks what I’m going to do with it. I kind of agree with the bad mojo stuff. But I am happy to say I will be remarrying, and am drawn to older estate rings…they might have stayed married more back in the day…but I bet they have plenty of bad mojo too! for now, I’m sitting on it. I like a valuable, easily liquidated asset ? we’ll see…tough stuff

I agree with this perspective — engagement rings became a custom to protect women financially when they could not do so independently. Times have changed – time to grow up people!

Yes, these things have power, but keep in mind that the diamond market is corrupt, so you won’t get anything near what the ring originally cost. That’s why I’d go for resetting the diamond.

The engagement ring is the first big thing a guy pays for in marriage, and he keeps paying for bigger and BIGGER things after that. This is the arena where feminism often fails to show any of the “equality” women seek with men. We men pay for most everything, then she divorces us, and we continue to pay.

While I’m all for a woman getting paid to do the exact same job I do (not the parts she likes while she gets out of working weekends and taking on-call “because of the kids), and I’m completely cool helping around the house (as long as she can stop nagging), I see women only want the parts of feminism where they benefit financially, but also want to retain the traditional parts of relationships where they also benefit. – like the guy to go broke buying that engagement ring that she then also wants to get money for after she (likely) initiated the divorce. Typical

I hate to say it, well, actually I don’t hate to say it, but I do I agree with DarthW.

As a woman wanting across the board equality, why should I get a wedding dress that costs thousands of dollars that I’m only going to use once, and my groom rents a tux? Again, why am I, or what makes me, entitled to a multi thousand dollar engagement ring, and my fiancé gets what? Nothing. The same for all the various anniversary gifts, that tend to be jewelry. (And let’s be real honest here, when it comes to individual expenses, our clothes, especially shoes, cost a lot as well.)

Where and how do I balance my desire for male chivalry, wanting a man to open the door for me, but then when we enter the boardroom I expect him to treat me as his equal?

If we (women) want to be taken seriously, then as my husband likes to say, we’re going to have to “step up to the plate” (that’s the only part he says, the rest is me) and start giving up some of these indulgences for the equality we’re seeking. Marriage is like any business transaction, in that in order to be successful, there is going to have to be give-and-take from both parties that costs averages out in however we all assess and value our desires.

That’s why, when my husband gave me an engagement ring, I gave him an engagement watch. For my wedding dress, I just bought a nice dress from Nordstrom and my husband bought himself a nice suit. Every year we go on a vacation together, and every other year (rotating between us) we’ll take a smaller vacation by ourselves with friends. So far it’s working out, and if it ever gets to a point that it doesn’t, then we’re pretty much already equally, and equitably, all divied up!

All fantastic points. I dated a guy who had a broken engagement. Took the ring, sold it, and used it to buy himself a Rolex. FWIW!

I still have mine and don’t know that I will sell it. We are separated and have been for a long time. He refuses to file for divorce so he can still have control over me . I will most likely have it made into something else along with diamonds from wedding band& anniversary ring. Monetarily he did pay for those rings but I paid with Blood Sweat and tears LITERALLY. I Made him a home, raised our children, took a lesser job with less hours so I could work & be home for our family. For all this He cheated repeatedly and left after 25 years. So I do not agree… I earned those rings and I will be damned if I ever feel he is entitled to anything given to me throughout our marriage.

Really, “bitter”?? What a nasty, sour comment of yourself to make about someone! WOW. I wouldn’t call Lori “bitter” simply because she is stating the facts that she was married to someone for TWENTY FIVE YEARS for the love of God, whose only thanks was to lie & cheat on her repeatedly. She sacrificed and dedicated her life to him and her children and got nothing but a slap in the face in return. Just because she’s making a “HELL NO” comment about a situation regarding the return of the rings (which, HELLOO, no way would that even be in the realm of possibility given the length of the marriage and the circumstances) does not make her “bitter.” It makes a wise woman who perhaps has learned that ol’ adage, “Fool me once, shame on you . . . fool me twice, shame on ME.” And, might I add, shame on YOU, Emma, for this snarky comment. Her first step in healing will be surrounding herself with people who understand why she might feel angry and betrayed — obviously you’re not one of them! :o

I’m going to disagree. I just got divorced a month ago and my husband left me with $20,000 of debt. I got NOTHING out of the divorce. NOTHING and I’m paying EVERYTHING. If I get $150 from a couple of rings what’s the harm? AND not EVERY husband pays for EVERYTHING. I paid for a lot of stuff and extra money to make sure bills were paid be because he didn’t give a sh*t sometimes. So stop generalizing. It works both ways.

Right — except:
I bought a nice dress off the rack at a dept store for $400. He bought a new tux for $1000
Yes, he paid for the engagement ring but we jointly paid for the wedding rings.
He earned more during the marriage — and spent it all (mine and his – we always had joint accounts) gambling.
Now he wants joint/equal custody of the kids but can’t provide a stable home and cant/wont pay any child support (going on 3 years now). Tell me again why I don’t deserve equality in the workplace so that I can continue to support myself and my children. Good thing the executives at the male-run company I work for don’t think the way you do or I’d be homeless.

And I’ll add – women may need to step up but men need to grow up and take more responsibility for their children.

He can have his ring back: it was cheap then, not worth much now, and he’ll use it to gamble.

I don’t agree with the BS comment that men pay for almost everything. I have a great job and pay my own way in life. And BTW, I not only paid for my ex husband’s ring but I also paid a decent portion of my own. Not only that, but I also supported my ex husband for the first 6 months of our marriage then he turned into a liar and a cheater, so I really don’t appreciate the fact that men come on here and generalize that the men pay for everything because that is not always the case!

Not all men pay for every thing my husband lost his job and was unemployed for 2 years, while I busted my ass for those 2 years working 3 jobs to make ends meet and still had to make dinner and lunches and clean and do laundry! Those years were exhausting!! But we survived and are still together I’m not sure how but I’m sure God had it all figured out! So women bust ass too Gary!!

I used mine as the down payment for a car that I really needed after my divorce. It took me a year to make up my mind to get rid of the ring, and just a week to sell it with this auction https://www.worthy.com/sell-jewelry/engagement-ring
All the people closest to me tried to persuade me to pass it on to my little princess when she gets older. They kept telling me that it kind of belongs to her, but I really didn’t want to see that symbol of my unhappiness on her hand! I am more than happy to hear that I am not alone and that you also did the same.
Emma, thank you for the support and inspiration that I receive from your articles!

Hi Maria – you did the right thing because it was right for you! You don’t owe your kid that ring, and it having it around dragged you down, good riddance. Good for you and happy driving!

You could have passed it on to the man who paid for it. I am sure you have said before during and after your divorce that you wanted nothing to do with him, well nothing to do with him other than keeping the money you get for the ring he bought because you were getting maried

Sorry Gary, a gift is a gift. If you give someone you love(d) something, it belongs to them. There are exceptions to this — such as family heirlooms and breaking off an engagement. If one actually walked down the aisle with someone and had every intent on having a real marriage and it didn’t work out, you don’t get to ask for your gifts back. I think it’s funny how men on this thread are acting as though women are just taking them for their money. Grow up.

I have to agree with the men in this case, and I am a woman. An engagement ring is a symbol of an agreement to share your life with one another. It is not simply a gift, such as a birthday, Christmas or other gift. And why are women not expected to do the same? This old tradition is really a joke. Not only is a man expected to be the one to spend the money for an engagement ring but then when the marriage fails, the woman is okay with keeping this? I gave mine to my ex when we ended the marriage. The ring was only mine when we shared our lives. And how about the man who gives the engagement ring that is a family heirloom? No different. It needs to go back to the man. Come on ladies, stop being so selfish. If you want a ring so bad still….work and buy your own!!!

I was told that a ring given as a ‘gift’, on a birthday, Chritsmas, etc, is and remains a gift. A gift is not returned when the primuse is broken. And that a ring given as a token of promise of love/marriage, is returned if the promise is broken. My source my not be correct, I always felt that it was fair.

I am getting a divorce after 30 years, I was trying to decide what to do with my engagement ring and wedding ring, didn’t know if I should go to a pawn shop or what.

I’m getting a divorce after 35 years with this man–I feel your pain Valerie!! I took my rings off & put them in my safe a few weeks back. Just spoke with a jeweler and he said when I’m ready we can remove all the stones from whatever pieces I want to get rid of (I’ll probably include his ring since he never wore his anyway) and play around with the loose stones to decide how I want to custom make some earrings & possibly a necklace with the centerstone. He’ll buy all the gold from me since they don’t reuse the gold in your new piece anymore. He said I’ll never get the money my diamonds are worth by selling them outright and quite frankly mine are worth too much. I’m thinking about getting this done ASAP before our divorce is finalized so I can have it paid for on his credit cards!!!

You must be the worst example on here not only do you want to sell the rings he bought for you but his ring and keep all the money.

All single men should read this article and attached thread to see what sort of people the ones they love can turn into.

Gary – You seem really hurt by all of this which makes me think this must be very personal for you too. An engagement ring or wedding ring is a promise of marriage; once the marriage occurs the promise is fulfilled and the ring is seen as a gift from one party to the other. No recipient of a gift is bound to return it, even if the relationship ends.

Yes, men and women should be aware that in a divorce, the gifts, including rings given to another belong to the recipient. There’s no right to half or something similar under the law or even under morality. When you truly love someone, even if that love ends, you don’t care about the return of the gifts you gave them; and you especially don’t care if they sell it to make ends meet. You realize that maybe those old gifts were deserved and you let go.

I hope you are able to let go of your pain at some point.

Gary,
The engagement ring is a gift and the man is not owed money back. Plus she received that gift 35 years ago! And she should give money back! She just said she can’t get the money back. Gold scrap is not worth that much. I’m going through the same thing, though I only have a 1/2 carat, though very beautiful, ring. My ex-husband returned to school, finished his undergraduate degree at 38, and started medical school at age 40. I was 2/3 support through undergrad and the sole provider throughout medical school. By residency, he wanted a divorce. This is not an uncommon story. Don’t judge when you don’t know her story. She probably earned every freaking cent as a wife. I know I did, though I walked away with very little.

Agree Gary. My story is a little different, after my wife moved from our abandoning me and our children, I’d successfully nabbed both engagement and wedding ring, along with the beautiful pave diamond ring that I’d purchased for her 49th birthday. Some of the money from the sale went towards lawyers, fees, which was a great help in fighting to have my X wife pay me child support in $1440 a month, all calculated by the courts disso-master. The remaining money went towards payment of my new Omega Seasmaster Chronograph watch.
Though the divorce is not completely finalized, another until first week in November, it was to my satisfaction that that money went to good use. The spousal support, which is absurd, considering that she got caught cheating, and I have to pay her for it, will offset the child support she pays me. I’ll still be losing in funds in the long run, but I’ve got a nice new watch and a brand new home to admire, not to mention the kids are with me everyday..

If he cheated and was the one to cause the divorce, she should be able to do whatever. Men think they can destroy marriages and still reap rewards!

I disagree. My ex demanded every gift he ever gave me and then tried to use the ring as an asset so he could keep the house. He cheated and he got the stuff. Even used my daughter’s car that I paid for against me. I had to let it go as it was just stuff. Five years later, I do not have the reminders surrounded me and know I took the high road. Keep thinking I will toss the ring at divorce beach in Cabo!

I wore mine for two years after my divorce, until a friend asked me why I was still wearing them. That day, I took them off, and put them in my jewellery box, and the day after that I was burgled and they were stolen along with other pieces that my ex had given me over the years.

I had the insurance money in the form of a card to use in different jewellers for two years. In those two years, I worehardly any jewellery. and realised we don’t actually need these adornments. Anyway, eventually I did get round to spending it, I tried on an eternity ring just like my old one and had this instant gut reaction against it. It immediately reminded me of the bad end to the marriage, and also of the burglary. End result, I bought something totally different, that I really love, and which is bringing me much pleasure…… and I’ve got a burglar alarm to keep me and my kids safe.

What a story — if you believe in the universe it seems that greater powers wanted you to get the eff rid of those rings!

Hi Emma,
I took rings (his…which he never wore) my 3 (including Anniv. Ring) and the few other pieces worth selling to a reputable Pawn Shop (aka I know the owners:)) Then I ceremoniously mailed half of the little bounty to ex, including a copy of the receipt. Even took pictures ensuring no snap could come back on me. It was very liberating and by continuing to take the high road, my children witness a grown-up.
Thanks for your messages.

I feel that the engagement ring is a gift and there’s no reason to give it back or the value of it back. That money was hers to keep.

I’m having trouble getting anyone to buy my 1/2 carat beautiful ring! I’m not being greedy about it, but I was told to sell it used on EBay or Craigslist, which I’ll do. And I do need the money right now, but more importantly, I want it out of my life and clean, clear karma, all the way.

Yes, I agree that getting rid of ring was what I needed to do. It was an ornate vintage ring and my sister always told me that she thought it was beautiful. So, I gave it away to someone who now adores it the way it should be loved, just for it’s beauty.

Ha! I had to read because of my opposite story. I’m glad you put your past to practical use. I still have the gold wedding band which I chipped in money to buy and I thought about selling it for gold value– thankfully, I haven’t been that desperate for money (yet). But interestingly, the “engagement ring” I have was bought from my dad who bought it cheap from my sister’s friend when she was going through divorce from an abusive husband (yeah, talk about jewelry karma). It has diamond “dust” on it. I might get $50 for the gold value. When I was married over 10 years and my ex was earning six figures, he surprised me with upgrading the laughable engagement ring. There was a Kmart going out of business and he got a good deal on 10k gold cz ring. Yup! Doubt I’d get $20 for it second hand. But you go ladies!

BTW: I saw in the discovery documents during my divorce that less than two months after my ex moved out, he bought a $6000 engagement ring online. Looks like the mistress got all the respect he was saving up from me. Whah, whah, whah!

The main diamond in my engagement ring was given to my husband by his mother to make into a new ring when we got engaged. My in-laws had a nasty divorce and a terrible marriage. Before we got engaged, my now husband asked me “do you think that a diamond ring from a divorced couple is cursed?” I thought about it briefly and said “not if the diamond is made into a new ring.” I knew where the question came from and that the diamond had already been taken out of the ring (the gold was melted down and made into something new). I also knew it was a nice diamond (and yes, nicer than anything he could afford on his own). When I look at my beautiful platinum ring (I’ve had the ring for 18 years), I do not feel any bad karma. I know the history of that diamond, from when my MIL’s MIL bought it for her son’s engagement (a whole other twisted story), to my MIL making new jewelry out her ring – a pin with the big diamond, and a necklace with smaller diamond accents. She offered the diamond to my husband even before we started dating, and happily took it out of the pin to hand it down to the next generation. It makes her happy to see it on me.

I totally understand why you sold your jewelry, Emma, and it sounds like it was the right thing for you to do. For my MIL, who still has bad feelings about her ex-husband/marriage 25 years later (she’s happily remarried) the right decision was to melt down the ring and reuse the parts separately. There’s no universal right answer, only individual ones. This was a great topic for your post and I’m enjoying the other responses.

This is a sweet story, but an anomalous one. Glad your ring has given you and others (including the MIL) joy. For most of us, just sell it already. :)

Hi Emma. I love your blog. I too am a divorced single mother. I sold my engagement ring and took my kids on their first cruise last April with the money I made from the ring. I wanted to do something with the money that the kids would enjoy. ..and they did. It was a memorable vacation. This weekend, I am going to Puerto Rico with girlfriends to celebrate a friend’s 50th birthday. I sold a few other pieces of jewelry my ex gave me to fund the trip. I found that the more I rid myself and my home of things that were “ours” or that my ex gave me, the more distance I am able to put between the happy person I am now and the unhappy person I was when I was married to my ex.

I’m loving every single thing you wrote. Some people commented on the FB page about using the stones and redesigning it into another piece of jewelry. Suit yourself, but the center of those “new” pieces is still the old, sentimental gems.

My final hearing is in 13 days (but whose counting?) I still have mine but have been planning to sell it as soon as the divorce is final. I’m going to pool the money I get for it with the proceeds from the sale of some other items I am getting in the settlement (of considerably more value) to buy a little center console boat that I can use to take my son out fishing and skiing. It’s a beautiful ring, just my style and wonderful, but I am with you, I can’t wait to turn those bad memories it into money (regardless of how little it may bring!)

Sounds great – I have boat envy (and this city girl doesn’t even know what a “center console” is). xx

Yes I still have mine. In the bottom of a drawer somewhere. My wedding band is an heirloom of my ex’s family. It was fused to my engagement ring after we were married. While I would have no problem selling my engagement ring, I feel I owe my ex’s family the courtesy of giving them the wedding ring back. But first, I’d have to go through the hassle of finding and paying someone to separate the rings again. Overall, the value of both rings is likely only $1000 total, so this isn’t really on my list of priorities.

That all sounds reasonable, including the fact you can’t be bothered :/

Do put that task on your to-do list through. It will be good for you. xx

I threw mine off the top of a mountain I hiked up. Very liberating and a great way to let go of it and some baggage.

Probably not that valuable, I’m sure I could have gotten money for it but I thought this would bring me more closure.

I love that! I sold my $425 first engagement ring on Craigslist for $175 and took the money straight to the blackjack table and lost it all. I know how bizzare that sounds, but it felt awesome.

I would do the same in your situation.

However, its probably a good thing to “shop around” rather than going straight to these big businesses. You may find that a local jewelers may offer you a much better price than these companies which often give you a lower price in exchange for the speed and ease of sale.

Yes, shop around. But I would recommend a chain business for lower-end jewelry or scraps — jewelers don’t want to deal with it and it may not be worth your time to schlep around to different ones (or pawn shops) for what may be a small sum of money.

When I had some jewelry to sell, I visited three pawn shops in succession. I live in NYC, so they are plentiful. If the first one offered $300, I went to the next one, and said I had an offer for $330. By benchmarking and inflating a bit (assuming that the first offer from each shop was just a negotiation starter), I was able to get 20% more than the initial offer. I didn’t smile or make conversation – just stated with a flat expression the offer and what I wanted. It was surprising fast and easy.

You should always shop around. Your goal is to receive the best value (return) for your diamond pieces. I wold also check out a company named MJ Gabel. I had a large diamond ring they had helped me with.

MJ gabel is BBB accredited and also recommended by several other organizations.
The experience can be awful if you cannot find the right company to help you. Like I said, MJ Gabel was fabulous.

I don’t see where to post what I’m doing with my rings, so I hope you don’t that I put it here. I’m recently divorced after trying to live in hell after 12 years. The first 5-7 were good. Anyhow, I’ve got to get these rings out of my life. I contacted a jeweler, and he plans to make the solitaire into a pendant necklace. I am going to get a lock box at the bank to store it in and give it to my daughter upon her college graduation. That way, its not in my new home and life. She can wear it or sell it if she needs the money. The band is narrow with small diamonds. The jeweler is making a list of options for me to choose from as far as that. I may just sell it for the little amount that its worth or even trade it for something that I want or can use as another gift for my daughter. I am definitely going to get rid of both. I feel as though they are 100% mine, so if I needed the money from the engagement ring, I would keep it and use it on me. Thankfully I don’t. Anyway, that’s my story.

That is a thoughtful thing to do … my only concern is that we don’t know what the value of the diamond will be when your daughter is out of college – they could be worth much more now.

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