(Closed) What's the bigger commitment? House or marriage?

posted 3 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 2
Member
2241 posts
Buzzing bee

I don’t think they see it as a bigger commitment; I think they see it as a great way to tie up money, and put oneself in a difficult living situation with someone you’re basically still dating. 

I guess you could say the logical order for most people is big, lifelong commitment first, then smaller, but potentially troublesome commitment second, so that you know, or have some proof, that the other person is in the relationship for the long haul before tying up funds and property in the way owning a house together tends to do.

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by  Jen9595.
Post # 3
Member
8967 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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mrspuppylove :  I’m one of those people and it has nothing to do with one being a bigger commitment to me. Too many people buy “together” without being married and in reality the two parties do not contribute equally to the home and do not have a written contract that lays out each person’s financial responsibilities. It makes for some messy breakups when that isn’t tracked and you don’t have the option of a divorce judge to hash it out for you. My now husband and I picked out our home together and the plan was always for him to live in it with me, but we weren’t even engaged at the time. I was the one who had the cash for a down payment and the one that qualified for a mortgage so I was the only person on the mortgage and deed. Before we married and joined bank accounts he paid me “rent” which was less than half the mortgage but equal to the amount he would have paid if we had continued splitting the rent on our old rundown apartment 50/50 (that was my idea since I was ready to buy and he wouldn’t have been able to afford more at the time). 

Post # 4
Member
8944 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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mrspuppylove :  Yep, what
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Rhopalocera :   said. It’s not a bigger commitment, it’s just an additional pain in the ass that some people are not ok taking on unless their partner is willing to make the bigger commitment.

Post # 5
Member
7595 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

It’s not about which is the bigger commitment (although IMO marriage definitely is). The problem we see again and again on these boards is when two people buy a house together and one person thinks this is a step toward marriage, while the other has zero intention of ever actually marrying them–but there is a failure to communicate so one or both partners don’t understand the severity of the disconnect. So the partner who wants marriage waits around for a few years growing more and more resentful and then finally it all comes to a head, they end up breaking up, and now they have to disentangle their assets from the shared house. Maybe they drag out the breakup even longer–despite seeing the writing on the wall–because the thought of disentangling themselves from the shared house is too overwhelming.

I think if you are truly on the same page as your SO about where your relationship stands and where it’s headed, there’s nothing wrong with buying a house together before engagement or marriage. But otherwise I would definitely not do it, just as I wouldn’t move across the country to be with a guy unless I was 100% sure we were on the same page about the relationship. For me personally, being 100% sure we’re on the same page could not happen without a formal commitment in the form of engagement.

Post # 6
Member
155 posts
Blushing bee

They both are a big deal legally although marriage is obviously a bigger deal. Fiance and I decided to buy a house before marriage. It made the most sense for us because we hate moving and wanted to do it before getting married. We didn’t want to have to pack up all the registry items and move into a new house. 

It also made more sense because it was easier to save 3.5% down for a house and will take more time to save for the wedding. 

Post # 7
Member
9580 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

I don’t think it’s because it’s a bigger commitment… it just can be an absolute shit show if the couple breaks up and they own together. I’ve seen it… couldn’t sell, mortgage underwater, still living together while starting to date others… barf. Took them *years* to actually move on because the stupid house.

while obvi there’s no garauntee with marriage either you are at least formally committed. 

 

Post # 8
Member
921 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Buying a house is a huge commitment, financial and otherwise. Buying a house in a town means that your ability to pick up and move has dropped significantly. I could not imagine tying my life up with someone that way unless we’ve already agreed to tie our lives up with each other anyway (i.e. we’re engaged). 

Post # 9
Member
756 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

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mrspuppylove :  kids is the biggest commitment 

Post # 10
Member
3262 posts
Sugar bee

I think after marriage, buying a house is a bit less of a rash decision. Whereas, without being married or committed LT, sometimes buying a house with someone isn’t always thought through. That’s not to say it can’t be. But often times, people buy houses together for logistical reasons, instead of focusing on whether or not they should be with that person. I think buying a house before the couple is ready provides a false sense of commitment. As PP said, more often than not, one half of the couple takes it to mean something the other half never intended. Buying before marriage, or at least before the couple is fully committed (I think it takes two very mature people to be long term partners, thus excluding them from this), mucks up the waters and adds unnecessary burden to the relationship. When the focus should be moving towards marriage, or a stable LT relationship, the focus instead shifts to “playing house.” All of the energy is dedicated to upkeep of the houses, finances, improve,nets, etc, etc, etc. 

All of that said, there are no guarantees in life. As long as both people are open and honest about their expectations, and concerns, it usually turns out fine. It’s when one person or the other start “going along” with it just to get that false commitment that issues really hit the surface.

Post # 11
Member
279 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

I would not buy a house with a boyfriend unless we were married as well since I agree there is a larger chance the relationship may not work out. With a marriage, although not a guarantee of course, but you have more of a formal commitment from each person. When I was just dating my now DH, I was ready to buy a house at some point so I did that with my name only on the mortgage. He moved in with me and paid rent to me (about 1/3 of mortgage and property taxes) . If we were to break up,  he would move out and I would still have sole ownership of the house. I also picked a price range that I could afford on my own .

Post # 12
Member
6882 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

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mrspuppylove :  I was absolutely in the don’t buy a house until married camp – it does make for a mess if you break it off.  But it does when there’s a divorce too, so it’s sort of flawed logic anyway.

So for us, buying the house was the greater committment, really. We’re not only agreeing to stay together, but also to remain in a specific location for quite awhile.  It meant we had to have all our ducks in a row as far as job security, find a place we both agreed on, save up money, etc.  Getting married, by comparison, was nothing – it meant affirming how we already lived, basically.  It’s not like until we took our vows we were running around flirting, partying and otherwise exploring the world.  The only change for us was my name and our ability (as it were) to have sex, since we’d been waiting.

Also despite my personal beliefs, we got the house first – we were afraid it would go off market!  I wasn’t thrilled, I wish he’d at least given me the ring, but that’s a whole other issue.

Post # 13
Member
5874 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

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mrspuppylove :  I see it as meaning the opposite.  If you aren’t willing to make the big committment (marriage) then why make the slightly-less-big committment (joint home ownership).

Committment sizes go in this order for me:

Big: Buying a home

Bigger: Getting Married

Biggest: concieving children (ironically, the only one that can be done unintentionally) 

Giving up your career for someone elses benefit falls in there somewhere too…not quite sure where.

 

Post # 14
Member
5874 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

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LilliV :  The way you did this is EXACTLY what I would recomend for people who want to co-habitate in a house owned by one party.

I tottally don’t get these people who think “he owns the house and gets the equity so I’ll just pay the utilities and groceries.”  WTH do utilities and groceries have to do with it?  What you need to pay is your half of the equivellent rent.

Post # 15
Member
79 posts
Worker bee

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cbgg :  what you pay should be discussed between the couple. You don’t necessarily have to pay everything 50/50 just “because”. Equality doesn’t always have to be counted in money.

 

Sorry but I just can’t with people who tells others what they should/need to pay. I am sure you did not mean it that way but I just had to add this. 🙂 

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