Mistakes everyone makes buying engagement rings

When you've met the person of your dreams, it's easy to start envisioning a life together. You have interesting conversations, you make each other laugh, and you just love spending time together. When you think about your future, you can't imagine not growing old together. At this moment, a couple will likely start thinking about next steps, like an engagement. However, thinking about planning the marriage proposal can be daunting in itself, and then there's the extra concern over buying the right engagement ring. In fact, according to the wedding industry site The Knot, 72 percent of grooms say they've faced challenges when purchasing an engagement ring. To help make this important decision, we've compiled some mistakes to avoid. 

In his more than 40 years in the business, Dennis Dalton, founder of Dennis Dalton Ltd. Fine Jewelry, has sold millions of dollars in rings. He told CNBC the first step in the process should be figuring out how much you want to spend on a ring. "It's not up to you to come up to my budget, it's up to me to get to yours," Dalton says. "Because I'm the professional, I know how to work the angles so you'll come out on the deal." Ultimately your own personal finances should be factored in, as this is a big investment and you don't want to bite off more than you can chew.

Try to avoid these common diamond mistakes when buying an engagement ring

Dalton also recommends paying close attention to the "four C's" which are: cut, clarity, color, and carat size. The value of the diamond is rated by these four characteristics and plays a crucial role in how much the diamond is worth, but it's easy to get hung up of certain factors that won't ultimately make too much difference.

For instance, if two diamonds are rated identically in color and carat size, but differ in clarity, it can greatly impact the price. However, just because the diamond may have a slight imperfection in clarity doesn't mean it will be noticeable. Dalton says that oftentimes a small flaw can be hidden and save you thousands of dollars. "So even though the rating is low, the finished ring is going to look great ... and you dropped the price thousands of dollars," he says. "That's why it's crazy."

Dalton warns of another mistake people are making — buying the ring before they see it in person. According to The Knot, there's been an increase of people buying their rings online, which he warns could cause some issues. "If you buy from the [paper ratings] then you got troubles, because the papers are not telling the story the way it actually is," Dalton says. "Come in, look at them side-by-side and say what you're willing to pay for."