Dave Ramsey says: Don’t buy a house together before you’re married

Oct 31, 2023, 1:00 PM

Dave Ramsey says it isn't smart to buy a home with your partner before marriage...

(Pexels Photo)

(Pexels Photo)

Dear Dave,

My fiancée and I plan to get married in May, and we are preparing to buy a house. We both work in sales, and combined we bring home about $7,400 a month before commissions. Our average commissions usually boost that to $12,000 a month. I’m worried that the house we’re looking at doesn’t fit our budget, though. The home costs $350,000, and we’re looking at monthly payments of $2,840 with taxes and insurance figured in. Do you think this scenario will work for us?


Dear J.T.,

Are you doing this on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage? If you’re not, you need to change that right away. That’s the only kind of mortgage loan I recommend. With the numbers you’ve given me, you two can afford that on the shorter terms I mentioned.

Now, let’s move on to the next thing. You’re speaking about buying a home as if you’re already married, and you’re not. I will not advise you to buy a house with someone to whom you’re not married. You’re talking to a guy who’s been doing this for 35 years, and I’ve heard all the horror stories that go along with, “We bought the house together, but we didn’t make it to the altar together.” Talk about an ugly breakup!

You two have a bad case of house fever right now. Believe it or not, you aren’t required by law to run out and buy a home just because you’re planning to get married. Please, wait until after the wedding to buy a home. And even then, wait another year or so. Buying a home is the biggest—and most expensive—life decision most people ever make. Take some time to just enjoy being married and getting to know each other even better for a while.

Listen, if you’ve already jumped the gun, if you already have this house under contract or anything like that, I would not close the deal. I’d talk to the sellers and tell them they can keep my earnest money, but I’m walking away. And get ready, because if you do this, your fiancée is liable to look at you like you’ve got snakes coming out of your ears. Make sure to communicate with her about where you’re coming from and why you’re doing it. It’s the best, and smartest, thing you can do in the long run, J.T.

I’m not predicting you two are going to break up or anything. I hope with all my heart nothing like that happens. But I’m begging you, buddy. Don’t buy a home with someone you’re not legally married to. The potential downside is just too great.

— Dave


Dave Ramsey

Stock image of a woman with credit cards using a computer....

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says: Mother-in-law needs help for credit card addiction

A well-planned intervention is needed for a free-spending mother-in-law with a serious credit card problem, Dave Ramsey says.

21 hours ago

scissors cutting credit card...

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says: Be gentle, he’s moving in the right direction

This week, Dave Ramsey discusses what best to do when one spouse is ready to get rid of the credit cards, but the other isn't.

3 days ago

woman with her head resting on what appears to be textbooks at a table...

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says: To pay off the student loan debt as soon as possible or hold off?

For some, the decision to pay off the remaining balance of student loan debt by dipping into savings could benefit them.

8 days ago

rings on a pillow...

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says: Go into debt for a wedding? Nope!

If you have to go into debt to make a wedding happen, you’re spending way too much, so Dave Ramsey offers some advice.

17 days ago

bag under tree with gifts...

Rachel Cruze

Dave Ramsey says: Here are tips on practicing contentment this holiday season

Here are five tips for keeping your expectations realistic and your spending in check throughout the holidays this year.

22 days ago

woman moving boxes...

Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey says: Risk is real when asking for outside help on a mortgage

Asking for outside help to pay off a mortgage may seem like a good idea at first, but Dave Ramsey explains why the risk is too big.

29 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @KTAR923...

Valley residents should be mindful of plumbing ahead of holidays

With Halloween in the rear-view and more holidays coming up, Day & Night recommends that Valley residents prepare accordingly.

Follow @KTAR923...

The 2023 Diamondbacks are a good example to count on the underdog

The Arizona Diamondbacks made the World Series as a surprise. That they made the playoffs at all, got past the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Wild Card round, swept the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS and won two road games in Philadelphia to close out a full seven-game NLCS went against every expectation. Now, […]



Importance of AC maintenance after Arizona’s excruciating heat wave

An air conditioning unit in Phoenix is vital to living a comfortable life inside, away from triple-digit heat.

Dave Ramsey says: Don’t buy a house together before you’re married