Find out more about compromising when it comes to buying a home together, for the best possible purchase for both of you.
Buying a house together as a couple can be so exciting, and a really lovely milestone for two people to achieve together. However, it requires compromise. Do couples need to compromise on a new home? Of course. One person can’t just make all the decisions, otherwise the other person will be unhappy – it absolutely has to be a joint venture. But how do you compromise on such a huge and complex undertaking together?
In this article we are going to take a closer look at the topic, so that you can find the right property for both of you, whilst maintaining harmony in your relationship at the same time:
Finding Common Ground
Everyone has their own idea of the perfect home. For this reason, a really good thing to do to decide on a house that is perfect for both of you, is to sit down and talk about what you both really want in a house. What are your priorities? What are your goals? What are your deal breakers?
Maybe you want a huge garden, but your partner would sacrifice garden space for more usable rooms. Maybe you both love the idea of a loft that can be converted. By talking about it, you will find sticking points you need to talk through, and areas of common ground that start to help you both build an idea of an ideal home to suit both of you.
A good (if not simple) example of compromise is a couple where one person wants a cute countryside cottage, and the other wants a city apartment. Through conversation, perhaps that couple identifies they both like a quiet home without traffic noise, and that neither requires somewhere that is exceptionally large. A compromise in this case could be a small property in a suburban neighbourhood with nearby green space, and an easy commute to the city.
Finding common ground is so important because it ensures that both people feel content with the place purchased, not just practically, but emotionally. When you are on the same page, conflict is much less likely, and neither of you have had to compromise on so much that the new life ahead is something that causes unhappiness, or big life goals to be completely written off.
Setting Realistic Expectations
You both have to be realistic about what you can afford, especially at a time when the housing market in the UK is so unpredictable. By setting achievable goals together you will ensure that both of your expectations match what is actually available to you right now.
These kinds of achievable dreams are important, because they are reachable. Of course, you might find common ground when talking about a dream property, but what about when it comes to what is available within your budget? The chances are you may well have a few clashes – which means more opportunity to compromise. By being open and honest with your communications before you start house hunting, you’ll both have a smoother house hunting process.
The Art Of Compromise
Diving a little deeper into compromising on a new home, we get down to the nitty gritty of compromise itself. How is it done? How do you do it without arguing?
First and foremost, you should ensure you both feel open, calm and ready to discuss everything. Rushing the conversation or bringing arguments or bad feelings into the conversation will only result in the process of compromise being strained.
Once you are ready to chat, actively listen to each other and don’t interrupt the other person when they are speaking. Mostly, remember this isn’t about winning or losing, it’s about collaborating and ensuring you’re both happy with the result of your conversation, and have a plan that you’re both happy with moving forward.
When Compromise Goes Too Far
Compromise can go too far, and it’s important to identify when that has happened so you can open up the lines of communication again and rehash your plans.
One clear sign is where you have compromised on everything to please your partner. It’s nice to compromise to make people happy, but in this instance, when you’ve compromised everything, it will likely lead to resentment down the line.
Another example of compromise going too far is where your core values have been left behind, or you’ve felt really upset at the outcome of conversations about the property you want to buy. Without resolution, this is likely to lead to a lot of arguments in the future, and at least one of you feeling completely unhappy in the house you buy.
Ultimately, the house you purchase has to be right for both of you, and that includes both compromising and recognising your individuality as people. It’s nice that you have a dream together, and then also have your own separate dreams and needs. The sweet spot is both of you being happy with what you buy without losing your individual identities in the process.
Involving The Experts
It is important to involve experts in your decision-making process together so you don’t end up in a maze of decisions, and so you’re both armed with all the information you need to make good choices together.
A solicitor is a helpful expert to involve because they know all about the home-buying process. They can explain all the details, and the consequences of different decisions you might make.
Another ace up your sleeve is an estate agent. They know the local area, what is on the market, and they can likely suggest houses that work for both of you. Interestingly, they probably have some wild cards that neither of you have considered, that might just throw all your current ideals out the door and give you both a brand new dream.
Involving professionals in this process does not make your relationship weak, it just means you’re both smart enough to want all the facts before making such a huge decision.
Compromising On A House: The Best Path To Home Happiness
When it comes to buying property as a couple, compromise is not just an option, it is essential. As we explored above, aligning your goals and priorities, managing expectations and embracing flexibility are incredibly important when it comes to making this important decision as a team.
Real compromise requires open dialogue, patience and sometimes a little professional help too, and by mastering it you’re already building great skills that will come in handy as a cohabiting couple. Compromising well is a true celebration of your partnership, and when you get it right, you’re able to select a house together that reflects your dreams and nurtures your relationship. Here’s to a harmonious, happy home and a beautiful new adventure.