Purchasing a home as a couple is a significant milestone in a relationship. Whether you're spouses or domestic partners, there are many factors to consider before settling on your dream home. While searching and moving into a new home as a single person comes with its own set of challenges, house-hunting as a couple can present obstacles that fall in a grey area. From what type of home to what you can afford, some of these items are non-negotiable while some offer wiggle room. If you're a couple looking to move into a new home, check out these 3 things to know when house hunting with your significant other.
1. Timeline for Home Purchase
When you first decide to purchase or rent a home, you've most likely discussed a feasible timeline for research, open house visits, application process, etc. However, it's best not to place a hard deadline on when to make a decision. Unless there are factors such as a new job or the birth of a child to consider, it's best to leave plenty of room for research, discussion and changes of heart. Purchasing a home as a couple should never be approached in a rushed fashion, and if one person isn't 100% on board with a particular property, it's best to wait rather than try to convince them otherwise.
2. Who to Hire as Your Realtor
While there are certain non-negotiables that come with hiring a realtor, it's also a decision that both people should approach with an open mind. While your realtor can be instrumental in negotiating a good price and finding great deals, if one partner feels strongly about a particular realtor to hire, it's best for the other to give in. While it is true that your realtor will have a significant impact on your home purchase, it's not important enough to have a stand-off about.
3. Know Your Negotiables & Non-Negotiables in Advance
This is a largely ignored step that can save couples a ton of hassle and disagreements. Before launching into your home search, make sure to write seperate lists of each of your negotiables and non-negotiables. Then, combine all your non-negotiables into one list and make this your starting point. If the list seems too long, try to cut it down by eliminating items that both of you don't feel strongly about. Completing this exercise before going into the process will be instrumental in avoiding nasty surprises later on.
House hunting with a significant other can be an exciting time but can turn ugly if both parties aren't open to reaching common ground. It's important to consider your partner's point of view while being clear about your own needs and non-negotiables. As long as you know what to stand firm on and what to let go, you'll be moving into both of your dream house in no time!
So you've decided to take the leap into home ownership, what now? Check out our latest post on the essentials to know when hiring a realtor.