5 Things to Know About Buying a Home Post-Wedding!
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Woo-hoo! You got married! Congratulations! Getting married is in the top 5 memorable moments of life, I’d say nestled somewhere in there between getting engaged and buying a home. Depending on your priority list you may have jumped straight into wedding planning the minute the ring slipped on your finger. If you’re like a few couples I know you planned (or are still planning) a long engagement and buying a home together snagged that first spot on the to-do list.
If you’re trying to decide if buying a home pre-wedding is a good idea take a look at my post about how my husband and I bought our first home before we got married. If you’re looking to make that move post-wedding here are a few things you should know about buying a home post the walk down the aisle.
You Buy a Home Two Ways
Something that people don’t really talk about is the two different ways you buy a home. Everyone knows you buy a home with someone financially but you also buy a home with a person emotionally. This is a big step in your relationship and may be the first big challenge you and your partner will face together as a married couple. Know that buying a home isn’t always rainbows and butterflies, your patients will be tested (by one another and other people) and you’ll need each other to lean on.
Both of Your Finances Count
Marriage is for better or worse, right? When you buy a home together in the eyes of the bank you both are included in the credit score check and the debt-to-income ratio, no matter who has the better score or the bigger bank account. Unfortunately, you can’t pick and choose to use one person’s income and the other person’s credit score. If one of you is a much stronger financial candidate than the other you could opt to only have one of you take out the loan from the bank and then add your spouse to the deed toward the close of the transaction or post-closing. If you aren’t sure about your financial state as a couple it’s a great idea to meet with a loan officer a few months before you’re really in the market to buy. They can give you great pointers on how to raise your credit score or how to raise your credit limit.
You’ll Need to Compromise
If you’ve been living in two separate homes or apartments you’ll be combining all your personal belongings into one humble abode! That means you likely don’t need two sets of pots, two sets of living room furniture, or two Ninja blenders unless of course you’re buying a mansion as your first home together.
Don’t Change Your Name in the Middle
When you buy a home there is a lot of paperwork and fact checking that is done by the bank and the closing attorneys. If you are planning to change your name after you tie the knot you’ll want to A.) Change your name completely before you start buying (bank accounts, credit cards, driver’s license, etc.) or B.) Wait until you’ve closed on your home. You don’t want to change your name mid-purchase as it has the potential to create a lot of confusion and ultimately a delay in moving into your new home.
You’ll Have to Wait on Big Purchases
When you apply for a home loan your loan officer will want to know two major items; how much do you have saved for a downpayment and do you have any other large purchases you were going to make in the near future. If you maybe don’t have money for a downpayment (ya know, incase you spent it on your wedding) your loan officer can likely suggest different types of loans to help you purchase a home. Their biggest request though will be that you don’t make any large purchases between the time they approve you for a loan and the time you close. This might mean waiting on that honeymoon you’d planned to buy after the wedding or holding off on buying that new car.