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Engagment Rings, Medical School, Student Loans, and 0% APR Credit Cards

Discussion in 'Allopathic' started by thedoctor8706, Feb 22, 2012.

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  1. thedoctor8706

    thedoctor8706

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    So I've seen threads about how to obtain an engagement ring while attending medical school, but they didn't answer my specific question. After budgeting my student loans, I can definitely afford the nice ~3K ring I want to purchase, but I obviously can't do it all at once. I'm borrowing the cost of attendance to my school, and it is higher than what I need. Add in the extra books/supplies money and I have the funds needed for an engagement ring. I have been very financially responsible, only buying what I can afford on our student budget, but obviously this kind of purchase is an exception.

    Problem: to build up this money that I would "save," I need time to pay off the ring. I figured a good plan would be to start a new 0% APR introductory rate credit card so I could take my time with the monthly payments and not worry about interest. The only problem is, if I am living off of only student loans, is there a card that will accept me based on only student loans as income? Are we allowed to report our allotted living expenses as "other income?"

    I have an excellent credit score built up as I've had a credit card since I was 18, but the limit on my current card is only 2K and there isn't that nice 0% APR. I basically only need this card to pay for the ring, so what do you guys think? Where can I find a card based on med student loan income? Does such a thing exist?

    If this question is in the wrong forum, please let me know! Thanks!! :)
  2. valkener

    valkener

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    Since you already have a card with 2k limit why don't you get a ring for 1-2k? 1k already buys a significant ring I'm not sure if you have looked around. Of course, "significant" is in the eye of the beholder but 1k buys a nice chunky quality diamond that will pass as an engagement ring anywhere ;).
  3. thedoctor8706

    thedoctor8706

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    While that is true, I still couldn't afford to drop even 1K all at once, and this card has a 20% APR so I would end up paying quite a bit more. That's why I was looking for a 0% something to pay the thing off over time. And if I have time, why not pay a little more if I can "afford" it haha. I only have the first credit card so I can pay it off instantly, avoid interest, and build my credit (hence my current, excellent rating).

    I mostly just used 3K as an estimate, I'm still shopping around (mostly bluenile.com) and probably will go for around a half carat, but you know, 4 C's and all... haha. I went into a jeweler and that ideal cut is just so good looking haha. :)
  4. theshellyb

    theshellyb

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    How long do you anticipate taking to pay this ring off? Most 0% APR offers only last for the first 6 months, and you only get a student loan check every 6 months- what's the difference if you lose $3k at the beginning of the semester vs. over the course of 6 months if you're not going to be getting another loan check during that time? Max you'd get 12 months free APR; why not just save half the amount of the ring from one loan check and then when you get the next one, buy the ring? When we're only getting paid in huge chunks every 6 months, I don't know why you have to pay for things gradually?
  5. SpecterGT260

    SpecterGT260 Catdoucheus

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    size = $$$/quality

    get her a whopping huge cubic zerconia!
  6. TACMON

    TACMON

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    you basically have to wait for 0% APR applications to be mailed to you in my experience (which for me wasn't often, and if they did, i didn't qualify), then I would use your loan money as income
  7. Dapado33

    Dapado33

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    The large jewelry stores (Kay, Zales, etc.) have their own credit cards and payment plans that they'll offer you. Like the person above me said though, any 0% interest period they offer you probably won't last long enough to make a difference. You already have all the money you're going to have until July or August, so unless you wait a few months and buy the ring closer to your next loan disbursement date, paying on credit won't help you very much.
  8. calvnandhobbs68

    calvnandhobbs68 I KNOW NOTHING

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    Yeah there's no card you're gonna find that has an intro APR for 2 years...if you can't pull together the money in 6 months I wouldn't bother trying to find a credit card, especially because if you happen to NOT pull together the money you'll get slammed for an outrageous rate on most of them (upwards of 20%+).

    Bluenile has their own 0% 6 month program if thats all the time you needed. You probably won't find anything from anyone over a year at 0% (even that's stretching it, most of them are 6 months). I'd recommend just making your girl wait it out and paying for it all at once.

    Not to mention, I have to say that buying a 3K ring off of loan money isn't the best idea in the world anyway. 3K is more like 4K-5K by the time the loan is paid off. It's your money but 3K is a pretty big chunk of change to throw around when you're living on student loans. If you're obsessed with an ideal cut diamond, you can still get an .5 carat ideal cut off bluenile for about $1600.
  9. thedoctor8706

    thedoctor8706

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    Thanks for the replies!!

    I guess our school is weird then... I have all the loans I'm gonna get for through May already. We get 4 quarterly disbursements and I basically just need to hold off until June when the next disbursement comes in. Even a 6 month buffer time would be very helpful for me. It's just because I plan on proposing within the next month that I need to buy it now, with the total funds needed coming in by June. I'm not rushing into anything, this proposal has been a long time coming and now that I have my opportunity planned, I'm a complete ring buying newb and trying to figure out how to do it. Maybe I didn't give myself enough time :oops:

    I guess my biggest thing is I'm not sure I'll qualify for in house jewelery financing because I have 0 income, but I heard that there were some credit cards that let you use student loan income as "other income" in the applications.

    But yea thanks for the answers, I'll check into it more!


    Thanks for this, I'll take a better look!
  10. painmd87

    painmd87 ASA Member

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    Almost any jewelry store will have its own financing program. I got 3 years no interest (if paid off in time -- if not, the juice has been running for 36 months at 29.99% interest -- yikes). The joblessness will be a problem credit-wise. Talk with them about it. See what it will take. A small store might have their own credit system that won't involve a big-bank-banked application.

    Any chance you can get someone to personally finance it? Parents? Siblings? Grandparents? Aunts/uncles? Friends? Or if not finance, will they sign on to the credit app?

    Does the future fiance know that this is a possibility? Is there any chance she could get on the credit application (assuming she has an income)? I was working when I qualified for my card, but added my fiance to get the wedding bands (needed a little extra).

    In my humble opinion, quality > size. Find a way to make yours special. You can probably get a big, low quality stone from Zales and wow her friends, but you can wow your wife with something that speaks to your relationship personally. I took the stones from the ring my father-in-law had given my mother-in-law and set them around a new high quality, small center stone. It had to be custom made, so it cost a little more, which meant the stone I bought had to be smaller than I could have bought straight up. It's not gaudy. It's not the biggest ring. It's probably one of the smaller engagement rings around. But it ties generations together, incorporates her family into mine, etc. It's a cool story to share when people ask about it. And we still have one or two more small stones from her parents' rings to share with our kids at some point.

    </sappy>

    Or just screw it and get the biggest stone you can afford and hope she wants size over quality. To each their own.
  11. Coltran

    Coltran

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    Get a cubic zarconia and tell her when you become an attending you'll get her a real ring. I know most people think the only "true" way to tell a woman you love her is to get a diamond ring, but CZ has its benefits:
    (1) Right now you are in a cash crunch. Getting a ring on 15%+ APR on a credit card? You'll never pay that off. The #1 cause of martial discord is not sex or cheating, but finances.
    (2) She's marrying a doctor. That's impressive enough (even if she too is a med student). She, her parents, and her friends will me more impressed by what you do than a 2k ring. Don't buy something you cant afford to impress people you don't even know.

    If she turns you down because the ring isn't real, than her love for you wasn't real in the first place.
  12. Kinis

    Kinis

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    .
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2013
  13. coldleg

    coldleg

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    some tips:

    -buy the stone and the setting separately. If you know what you want, you can buy a nice stone, and take it elsewhere to get the whole ring made. Will save you significant $$$.

    -don't sacrifice color or quality. better to have a stone with a facet or two with perfect color, than a flawlessly cut stone that looks gray/cloudy.

    -don't forget to factor in the insurance on the ring. make sure you retain the GIA certificate for insurance purposes. You can put it on your renter's/homeowner's policy, but make sure you have something to cover your butt in case of theft/loss/acts of god.

    -don't skimp on it. the whole purpose of the ring is that the shininess will distract her from wanting to leave you when you neglect the crap out of her during residency.
  14. theshellyb

    theshellyb

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    Also, make sure you read the conditions of that insurance. I know some friends with rings that have to be inspected every 6 months to make sure the setting is secure, otherwise the policy is void if they skip their appointments.

    Awesome. :laugh:
  15. dntke1518

    dntke1518

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    While I am not a student yet, I recently got an engagement ring that was over 2k... I went to Jared lol. But in all seriousness, most of the bigger stores will have their own cards (I am using Jared's Store card, they have 12 months 0%APR.) So that might be an option for you?
  16. NES10111

    NES10111

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    We bought my ring from Zales out of their used section. There's no way you can tell if a diamond is "used," and it came from the jeweler directly, so I knew it was legit. We were able to get a $6700 ring (2 total carats, with a 1 carat center stone) for $2200 (that was including tax). I am extremely pleased - even more so knowing what a good deal we got. That might be an option for you to try.
  17. coldweatherblue

    coldweatherblue

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    Diamonds: The easiest way to get a puppy-loving, peaceful, church-going girl to publicly admit she supports an international monopoly using indentured servitude to take advantage of the most vulnerable members of our population for the sake of a substance made purely of one of the most common elements in the universe with the simplest chemical formula of "C".

    and identical man-made diamonds will never satisfy because they don't involve mass graves of innocent civilians killed during their production..

    btw don't have this conversation with your girl, it doesn't end well.. :laugh:
  18. WTEngel

    WTEngel

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    If you can't pay for it out right, then you can't afford it.

    There is no sense at all in going into debt for an engagement ring. It is a total vanity purchase, which offers you no practical return.

    Wait until you can afford or find a deal on the ring you want (without going into debt), lower your expectations to a ring you can afford, or hold off on the purchase all together.

    If the girl you are intending to ask to marry you loves you and supports you, then she will understand that at this point in time, going into debt over something so non-practical is not a smart idea. Focusing on maintaining good sound finances and meeting your goal of getting out of medical school and into a good residency should be both you and her focus. If you or she can't understand this, then there are other issues than a forum can answer.
  19. Rollo

    Rollo Renowned Wolf

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    Words of wisdom right here.

    Quality over quantity. Your girl doesn't need a 3K ring and you don't need to buy a 3K ring. Invest that money in a new car or down payment for a house or something more practical.
  20. FrkyBgStok

    FrkyBgStok DMU c/o 2016

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    get your girl something small now and upgrade later. most respectable places will allow you to trade in the diamond you purchased toward an upgrade for the full value. When my wife and I got engaged, I spent $3040 on the diamond stone and got a cheap band. We upgraded the band when we got married a year and a half later, and a year and a half after that, we upgrade to a bigger diamond and they gave me the full $3040 credit to apply to the new diamond. So buy something small now if you want and say "i will hook you up later."
  21. thedoctor8706

    thedoctor8706

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    Thank you for all the thoughtful/helpful replies everyone! You've given me more insight into this obviously uncharted territory. I appreciate it. :)
  22. kautionwirez

    kautionwirez Hadoken!

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    is that a fake diamond essentially?

    "will you marry me?"
    *shows fake diamond*
    "yes!"
    "BTW, I'll get you a real diamond when I become an attending"
    "Is that what you think of this??!?!?!!? You think our marriage is FAKE?!?!?!!??"
    *slap to the face*
    *miserable for 5 years, wife brings this up every time there is an argument*
  23. FrkyBgStok

    FrkyBgStok DMU c/o 2016

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    qfmft!
  24. Rollo

    Rollo Renowned Wolf

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    Nice to see you plan on giving your balls away to your wife too...
  25. kautionwirez

    kautionwirez Hadoken!

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    isn't that what marriage is all about?
  26. Rollo

    Rollo Renowned Wolf

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    Well played...
  27. Impromptu

    Impromptu ASA Member

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    Admit it. You have been brainwashed. Don't try and rationalize it. Just let that realization sweep over you. You have been manipulated more effectively than any cult could have done. They are controlling your wallet. They are making you fret over a non-essential item which they have convinced you that you must have.

    Rent the Movie "Blood Diamond" and watch it with her. Next read some exposes on the DeBeers cartel. Afterward have a discussion about how while it is the current dominant culture to want a diamond ring, that you could not support such an industry.

    I broke the cycle of the cult of DeBeers. I recently got engaged and bought a ring. The gemstone was moissanite. Moissanite looks fantastic. Stronger, harder, shinier, and more brilliant than cubic zirconium. More fire than a diamond (yes, outshines/sparkles a diamond). If you want, you can get a special hardening process which leaves no trace of yellow at all, no matter how hard you look. I did this process and got a 1 ct sized gemstone for around $500 (Less if you don't get the hardening process). A comparable 4 c's diamond would have been near $8-10,000. I was upfront with her about not wanting a diamond gemstone.

    The real trick was the setting. The setting makes all the difference. This is where she can tell whether or not you know her well. I ended up getting a setting from the Shane Company. Huge selection. Lifetime free cleaning and sizing. We did a jewelry store walk through and I found out a few of her general desires, white gold, wedding band that fit into it, but then I went back bought the setting I thought would fit her personality the best. I really wanted a big flashy setting, but she is elegant and graceful and very non-flashy.

    I did well. She said yes. She loves it and never takes it off. Her friends and family are very jealous and think I am a genius for picking out the perfect ring for her.

    Just as an aside, I hated Jareds. First off, their commercials make me want to punch someone, and I am a pacifist. Second, they would not mount any outside gemstone, because they claimed I might try and sell it to someone as a diamond and commit fraud, so they would also not clean or size a setting I bought. (Shane company's commercial are bad too, but their in house selection is huge and their salesmen are not paid on commission, so there is no hard sell).
  28. valkener

    valkener

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    I'm very picky so my husband and I got engaged without a ring. Then we looked around until I found the perfect one that I wanted at Kay's. Not all diamonds are blood diamonds.
  29. abumblingbee

    abumblingbee bumbling along

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  30. IlDestriero

    IlDestriero Ether Man

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    Just get something like this:
    [​IMG]
    Plenty impressive, under $2k. Save the diamonds for later when you can afford them.
  31. Impromptu

    Impromptu ASA Member

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  32. Slack3r

    Slack3r Sicker than your average

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    Fight the power.
  33. 45408

    45408 aw buddy

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    I wouldn't. That sounds like fraud to me. It's not income.


    For the OP - my wife's ring cost me $1250 and looks great. Go to an independent dealer though, not an overpriced sham like Zales or Jared.
  34. thedoctor8706

    thedoctor8706

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    I agree, I'd rather not test the system, even if it might be passable in the "other income" section.

    I did a little more shopping and found something very nice (ideal cut, G color, SI2, 1/2 carat) for around this price. MUCH better than the premium I was looking at before. Thank you for the replies!
  35. ptdpt

    ptdpt

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    Now that is a good deal!!!!
  36. Ilovewater

    Ilovewater

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    Do you have recommendations for independent dealers?
  37. 45408

    45408 aw buddy

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    I'd look for a local dealer. I can only recommend a specific one if you live near MCW ;) I went there for my wife's engagement ring and the two guys I referred there also bought their wives' engagement rings there. The guy doesn't advertise or mark up his prices much, but he must make up for it in volume because I saw a number of people coming in and discussing very large purchases while I was there. I also went back to him for our wedding rings and diamond earrings later. No hassle, no BS, just good prices.
  38. thecgrblue

    thecgrblue Enjoyin' the journey

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    +1 :laugh:

    The trick is to never let her see a real diamond in the store. My wife was fine with a CZ...then the stupid saleswoman pulled out a free standing diamond and it was ALLLLLL over.

    Haggle, haggle, haggle. If you have to go the diamond route don't settle for what they say the price is. I was able to my wife's ring and diamond (.5k) for under $900. I found one that had flaws, but in a place where the setting covered it up.
  39. Rendar5

    Rendar5

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    agreed with above to avoid Jared's, Zale's, or other major store. the quality is not going to be any different, (the four main qualities of a diamond are the same anywhere you go, some stores have super specialty cuts, but honestly, unless you're a jeweler, an ideal cut is more than sufficient) but the price is marked up by at least 50% if not 100%. If you're in NYC, please go to the diamond district, and make sure it's a certified diamond.
  40. CaliHope13

    CaliHope13

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    I just bought my fiancé ring from a place in Chicago... most places I looked at had a great financial deal in place with the store, for example I financed $4,000, there was a one time finance charge of 6% or $240.... No other finance charge will be enforced. I have 4yrs to pay it off....

    Much better than carrying this balance on a credit card that will charge me and % interest on the carrying balance...
  41. drno31

    drno31

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  42. 45408

    45408 aw buddy

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    This is not typical in any way, shape or form.
  43. turkeyjerky

    turkeyjerky

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    Anyone else think this whole thing is f'ing insane?

    I mean, borrowing several thousand dollars to buy a piece of jewelry? When you a goddamn student w/ no income and already hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt?

    WTF is wrong w/ you people?
  44. IlDestriero

    IlDestriero Ether Man

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    The only problem with this plan is that if you don't pay it off by the time it's due they often charge significant interest (I've seen 29%) and back charge you for the 4 years. Fine for someone with money who can pay it off at any time, a bit of a risk for someone without that luxury. Of course they want you to take out the max and if you fail to pay, oh well, your problem.
  45. SchroedingrsCat

    SchroedingrsCat

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    Everyone should read this. Hopefully once you realize how much manipulation and brainwashing has gone on to promote diamonds as symbols of love you will be disgusted and if your s.o. is someone you can actually talk to and has a brain you can tell her about this and you two will be in love even more knowing that your love is not defined by marketing campaigns and corporate tricks. Unfortunately, I doubt this is the case and I'm guessing the s.o. is too heavily brainwashed for this.
  46. CaliHope13

    CaliHope13

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    I think its completely reasonable for anyone to take 4 years to pay off a balance. If that is not an option for you then maybe a big purchase like this might have to wait. But yes if you fail to pay after 4 years they screw you. But wth a plan in place to make the 4yr work its an excellent finance offer.
  47. valkener

    valkener

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    I think 4k is too much if you can't afford it and have to pay it off over a period of 4 years. What are you trying to prove? That you're a big mackin' sugar daddy that is cool enough to whoop out 4 G? 1-2 K is easily enough to buy a fantastic ring. My husband paid 500 for mine and it looks very nice.
  48. murfettie

    murfettie

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    moisonite is really awesome..

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