Monthly Archives: February 2018

Yes, There Are Welcoming Cities in Alabama for LGBTQ Individuals

Posted on February 26, 2018 in Buying a Home

Considering a move to Alabama? If you identify as LGBTQ, this might be one of the last places you want to move. You’ve heard horror stories of discrimination and hatred, but fortunately, not all of the state is like that. There are progressive, welcoming cities in Alabama, and you’ll find a number of gay and lesbian real estate professionals on hand to help you find a great home. Here are some of these cities.

Montgomery

The capital of the state happens to be one of the most progressive not just in Alabama but in the south. Part of this is because it’s something of a college town, although it’s larger than most. Alabama State University, Faulkner University, Auburn University at Montgomery, and Troy University are all located here. The city has recently renovated and revitalized the downtown area, bringing in new condos and other housing options. The New Beginnings Community Church is noted as being very open to diversity and welcomes LGBTQ members.

Mountain Brook

Just the name Mountain Brook sounds peaceful, beautiful and amazing. This small city is known for its New England-style homes and affordable townhouses. The city has a great view of its surroundings since it’s built on a hill. Mountain Brook is also known for being the site of Alabama’s first Whole Foods grocery store, so you know you can get great food at a good price.

Tuscaloosa

Despite its odd name, Tuscaloosa is a progressive college town. Home to the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa, there’s plenty of room here for everyone. If you don’t want to live near the rowdier university, there are plenty of suburban neighborhoods that are nice and quiet. However, the university is known for its LGBTQ support and is home to the Alliance for LGBTQ Equality.

Mobile

Mobile is another very progressive city. Those who are spiritual can join the congregation of Cornerstone MCC, an LGBTQ-friendly church. The University of Southern Alabama is located here, and the campus has its own Gay-Lesbian Bisexual Alliance. In 2013, Mobile was ranked first in the state for being LGBTQ-friendly by the HRC.

Birmingham

Finally, there’s Birmingham. It’s the largest city in the state and is full of people from all walks of life. The city hosts a large Pride festival every year in addition to events such as a gay and lesbian film festival. There are a good number of LGBTQ-owned businesses in Birmingham, too.

Are You Ready to Buy a House Together?

Posted on February 19, 2018 in Buying a Home

Before same-sex marriage was legal, home buying for the LGBTQ community was something of an uncertainty. Should you both apply for the loan and out yourself to your real estate agent, lender, and everyone else involved? Would you experience some type of discrimination, even if it was done unconsciously? In some cases, the person with the better credit or more stable financial situation would apply for the loan on their own. This came with its own set of issues, of course.

Today, same-sex married couples are much more likely to apply jointly, and many work with an out and proud gay or lesbian real estate agent. But before you even reach that point, you have to ask yourself: are you ready to purchase a house together?

You’re Cementing the Relationship

Ten years ago, when an LGBTQ couple split, it was mostly up to the two people involved on how to divide things. In many ways, it was easier than it is today since with same-sex marriage came same-sex divorce. Owning a home adds more paperwork and decisions if you later divorce. Buying a home together is another layer of commitment. It’s great if you’re definitely at that point in your relationship. However, if you’re having doubts about your marriage or relationship, consider if it’s the right move.

Have You Discussed Finances?

Again, if you’re married, you may have already talked about money. If you haven’t and are looking at buying a house together, sit down and go over finances. Does one of you tend to spend more frivolously than the other? Do you have investments? How will you both contribute financially? Will you have a joint account or maintain separate bank accounts? All of this is important to talk out before you buy. If you’re both on the same page, you’re ready to financially commit to owning property.

Are You Compatible?

Have you spent some time staying with each other? If you’ve never stayed over before, you probably aren’t ready to live together! Consider spending a few weekends together before you even think about moving in together. You might discover that your potential live-in partner has a number of habits that drive you crave and vice versa. You need to know what you’re getting into before you discover something that’s a deal breaker. Make sure you’re both truly committed and compatible.

If you are and you’re ready to take that step, it’s time to find a real estate expert and begin the house hunt!