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We both want to buy a house but I also want to travel

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Question - (11 September 2023) 6 Answers - (Newest, 16 September 2023)
A female United Kingdom age 26-29, anonymous writes:

Hi cupids,

I have a bit of a dilemma with my relationship when it comes to finances and matching up with what we both want for the future.

For context, I had a turbulent upbringing with both of my parents addicts. I worked really hard and became self sufficient, now living in the capital and got lots of savings in the bank which I rely on to feel stable.

Me and my partner have been together for 5 years and are very happy. We live together in the city and we've been talking more about buying a house.

We pay a lot each month for our rented property and we think that our landlord is very likely to increase the price of our rent at the end of our contract in April as we live in a really lovely property.

Because of my upbringing, I worked two jobs and had an internship at the same time during my late teens and early twenties, whilst I watched a lot of my friends do gap years, travel and be frivolous. I decided that I would work and then do things like travel / see the world and go on big holidays when I felt more comfortable with money in the bank.

I am now nearly 29 and I have a lot of money in my savings to go on these trips - which is really a big priority in my life. I don't mind how I do it, instead of taking a year out I'd be happy to go on big holidays and still have my job back home.

But for my boyfriend, he has considerably less in the bank, probably just under half of what I have and whilst he's been great at saving, he did a masters whilst I spent the majority of the time working. So it's through no fault of his own.

He doesn't want to rent any longer and wants to put his money in for a house deposit - and it makes sense, especially if our rent becomes so high it's higher than what we'd pay for a mortgage and it'd be nice to be on the property ladder.

However, he's getting some help from his family for finances, and I would have to use 90% of my savings I've worked so hard for. I'd have 10k left to do these big holidays (but it matters that I have a good amount in the bank for feeling secure)

I just don't know what to do. If we get a house, I doubt he would be able to really do all these trips. And whilst it would be good to get on the ladder, I don't want to spend the majority of my money.

I feel like we're on different pages a little and it's hard to find a compromise between us we're both really happy with.

I'd love for your opinions! Thanks so much in advance.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (16 September 2023):

To add to my reply, you are also much more secure with a mortgage than renting. It is incredibly difficult for a bank to reposses your home, even if you fall behind with payments. They will have to agree a new repayment plan with you, or offer a paymebt holiday etc. In contrast, a landlord can boot you out right away for missing payments. So if its security you are after, a mortgage wins against renting.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (16 September 2023):

Why not buy a property and then rent it out temporarily while you go travelling? The rent will likely cover the cost of the mortgage and give you some 'spare' money for your travels. You can travel fairly cheaply in many countries and still have an amazing time.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (14 September 2023):

I divorced my first husband because he wanted to spend all the time and resented it when I insisted we get a mortgage and buy a small house instead. He never contributed a penny towards the running of the house and it was not long before I decided it was over. I was financially better off alone let alone emotionally better off. I worked very hard and now have five houses I own right, all paid for cash. Years ago. I am at an age where I would much rather be single and lonely than with some guy who is less hard working than me, or has different ideas of how to take care of money, who is not into saving and investing and just living for today, or earning less than me. Once you are totally self sufficient financially you ought to be far more picky about who you share your life with. Not less.

If you are good at being on your own emotionally then stay single rather than throw your lot in with this guy. You are trying to make a round peg fit into a square hole if you continue with him. Even if he reluctantly agrees to what you want he will go back on it later by not saving or paying his share of things. You could end up being his financially mum, a sugar mummy, instead of being equals. He would gain left, right and centre and you would lose out and be buying him.

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A male reader, Myau New Zealand +, writes (13 September 2023):

Myau agony auntThe answer seems to be offer him a deal:

We buy a house but we are saving up for the holidays I always dreamed of.

His no equals your no. End of story. Go on your holidays.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (12 September 2023):

I don't agree that marriage is a prerequisite for buying property. Only people that join their finances together are really married, those who have prenups, etc. are always with one leg out of the relationship.

However, don't buy anything with anyone you're not on the same page with.

For my husband and I OWNING an apartment was premordial. We saved, didn't travel and we bought it. Then we decided to buy a property in the country. Same thing. But it made sense for both of us! We have friends who still don't own their apartments, but they travel all the time. I could never have a partner like that. Not because they're wrong, but because we all have our own needs and ideas about life.

Don't spend money you don't have.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (11 September 2023):

Do not buy a property with someone you're not married to. Too many times I've seen couples do this and it never turns out fine. Do not play house if you're not married.

If you want to buy a property but not ready for marriage then do this separately. He buys his and you buy yours.

If you choose not to take my advice then please see a property lawyer and they will tell you what you should and shouldn't do.

I also live in London. Islington in fact and I paid 10 years of rent before I could be mortgage and rent free.

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