Most people would prefer to buy their own home rather than pay rent to a landlord every month, but it’s not always easy on your own. This is why banks allow two or more people to apply for a home loan or what is sometimes called a joint bond account. This means that all parties jointly own the property and, therefore, are jointly liable for the costs and fees.
You don’t have to be married but there are important factors to consider before leaping into a long-term financial commitment with a friend, live-in partner or sibling.
Sign a written agreement
Unfortunately, if both applicants are not legally married, they are not protected by the country’s marriage laws even if they live together. So, it’s a good idea to consider signing a written agreement with your partner when buying a home together. In the agreement, you and your partner should agree on how to deal with the asset in the event of a breakup or if one person is incapacitated.
Check your credit scores
Both you and your partner’s finances will be assessed by the lender during a joint bond application. This is why it’s important that both applicants have a good. Banks will also consider the income and monthly expenses of both applicants when conducting an affordability assessment.
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Consider life insurance
When a loan is granted, the bank may require both applicants to take out life insurance as security. Banks need to know that the loan will be settled even if both applicants are unable to service the debt due to permanent disability or death.
Banks regard the applicants as equal shareholders in the property unless a primary applicant is registered on the title deed. If one applicant defaults on their monthly bond repayment, the other will be held liable to cover the amount owed in addition to their own contribution.
If one partner can no longer commit to the bond agreement, a new bond application will have to be processed. The new application requires a full credit and affordability assessment.
A house is a big-ticket purchase and a long-term financial commitment, so you need to be absolutely sure about what you’re getting into. A joint bond application can be a great way to buy your first home, but ensure that you and your partner are protected.