While many couples choose to buy a home after getting married, some do not want to wait. They view buying a home as a way of moving forward in a relationship, but doing so may not be the best financial move. Experts warn those who want to buy a home before marrying that if they later decide to end the relationship, dealing with the financial fallout can be complicated.
In a divorce, there are clear rules and guidelines couples can rely on to divide up their investments, property, and wealth. Unmarried couples are not bound to follow any of these rules. According to experts such as real estate expert Matt Parker, couples face much more risk if they take out a mortgage as two unmarried individuals.
Another expert, Andrew Schrage, states that those who are going to apply for a mortgage together should speak with an attorney first. They should have a legal expert draw up a document that outlines ownership of the property and how that ownership can be changed. It should also stipulate how the mortgage and homeowners insurance is to be paid for, how the property is to be maintained, and other information.
In short, Schrage says, the two should approach co-owning a home as if they were going into business together rather than seeing homeownership as an extension of a romantic relationship. Doing so will make sure both parties are protected.