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!