Have you ever thought about buying a house with a friend? In our most recent survey, we asked Brits the same question and over a third revealed they would consider it, instead of struggling to buy alone or waiting for the perfect time to make the move with a partner.
Whether you can’t afford to purchase a property by yourself, haven’t got a partner to share the cost with or would simply prefer to live with a friend, it can be a great option for the both of you.
However, there’s a few things to consider before you go ahead and sign a mortgage together. Take a look at our top five tips for buying a home with a friend below, and make sure you’re ready to invest.
Try renting first
If you haven’t lived with your friend before, try renting first. It doesn’t have to be a long-term let, one to three months will do. While saving money on rent is most likely to be the reason you both want to buy a property, it’s certainly worth paying to rent a home together for a few months to make sure you’re compatible – you might love seeing them for a few hours per day, but can you enjoy their company on a long term basis?
Renting is a great way to discover each other’s habits and work out if your daily routines clash. It would be a disaster if, one month after getting a mortgage together, you both realised you couldn’t live together – both financially and for your friendship! Test the waters, and see if you both share the same cleaning habits, for example, before making such a huge step.
If you’re ready to buy a house with a friend, then it’s safe to say you probably trust them. But when money is involved, it’s better to be safe rather than sorry.
Discuss your monthly income, outgoings and set a realistic budget. At this point, it’s important to work out how much you can each spend on a property, and discuss how you will both split the mortgage. It can be 50/50, 60/40 or any other combination if you buy as ‘tenants in common’ – just make sure it’s realistic and attainable! With both names on one mortgage, your credit report rating will be affected if something doesn’t go to plan even if you pay your share on time, so it’s important to be careful.
Discuss the small things, before you move in
Sometimes, the smallest of things can cause arguments. Plan ahead before you purchase a home so you can work through any disagreements before you spend so much money.
While things like dÃ©cor may seem trivial, it’s a major part of buying a new home. Understand one another’s likes and dislikes, and agree on a general theme or style for each room – creating a mood board can be great fun. You’ll want to talk about furniture too, especially larger pieces like a beds, sofas and appliances!
Draw up agreements
While there are a handful of required legal agreements required for signing a mortgage, it’s important to create an agreement discussing the more human side of sharing a home. Set rules from the start, concerning how bills should be paid and even how you will split the cost of certain appliances – like a fridge or freezer – if it breaks.
This is known as a Declaration of Trust, and costs Â£350 to set up.
Talk about house guests
Even if neither of you currently have a partner, it’s wise to talk about house guests. How comfortable are you both with other halves staying over? How often is acceptable? And what will happen if someone wants their partner to move in?
Set up boundaries at the start to avoid any unpleasant conversations in the future!
When itâ€™s time to move in together, donâ€™t forget to browse through some articles that might make for a smoother transition. Weâ€™ve compiled some of our favourite tips for new homeowners, from interior trendÂ tipsÂ to DIY projects for decorating your home.