Everyone has disagreements with loved ones. But if arguing is too frequent, you could have deep unresolved issues in your marriage. This is the worst time for you to buy a house.

Not only will you take your troubles with you, the challenges of owning a home will be made that much harder, including paying a mortgage that may be higher than you’re currently paying in rent.

Buying a home is a commitment and a responsibility. To be successful homeowners, your goal should be to maintain and enhance the value of your home. It’s much harder to protect and grow assets if you’re not working in tandem, but you at least owe that to yourselves and to your neighbors.

Owning a home is more work than renting. You can’t call the super or the landlord when the sink stops up or the roof leaks. You need a division of labor that makes sense for your abilities because there’s so much more to do. That means you either do things yourselves or hire professionals.

In healthy relationships, there’s a cheerful and willing gift of service that each partner provides to the other. You talk about what needs to be done and develop a plan to lighten the workload and turn chores into fun. One offers to mow the lawn while the other weeds the garden. After a shower and a little afternoon delight, you fire up the bar-b-que while your soulmate chops veggies for the kabobs, and you end the day with a romantic dinner on the deck enjoying the sunset.

Trying to win a power struggle is a waste of time. So practice your partnership in these positive ways:

Set boundaries. Agree not to say or do things that punch each other’s buttons. Words can cut like machetes. Instead of trying to win at all costs, ask yourselves if hurting your spouse is really worth a victory lap.

Celebrate your differences. Remember the attributes about your spouse that charmed and touched you before the fights began. Sometimes when you get angry, all you can think about is what set you off. Try to forgive, and more importantly, forget when your spouse isn’t perfect.


Don’t try to change each other. Are toothpaste tubes squeezed the wrong way really worth a fight? Stop nagging and try to find the humor in it instead. In other words, you can choose your attitude and responses.

Take money issues seriously. Money problems only get worse if you’re not in sync. A spendthrift isn’t going to change because of a mortgage obligation, so start by saving for a down-payment. If that’s too much to accomplish, then a house of your own is probably not going to happen.

Own your part. You’re not perfect either. While you’re concentrating too much on your partner’s faults, you’re likely overlooking your own. Maybe you’re too perfectionistic, controlling, boring, cheap or cold-natured.

Get help. A neutral party can help your relationship, so consider a marriage counselor, psychologist, priest or pastor, or marriage boot camp. Living with another person can be difficult at times, but learning to handle differences like adults and not like spoiled children can save your marriage.

Once you’ve heard each other and resolve to put each other first, see how it goes. If you’re enjoying each other again, then you’re ready to buy a home.