Just ask any couple and they’ll tell you that conflicts in any relationship are inevitable. No two human beings think in the same way and each has their own stories, characters and emotional responses, which is why you’ll often find yourself in disagreements.
However, couples don’t only squabble over who’s taking the trash out, what to eat for dinner or who’s not committed enough. Husbands and wives can also disagree on a home purchase.
You might have been together for 2-3 decades but yet you still seem to have irreconcilable differences when it comes to selecting a house. While you fancy a nice cookie-cutter home, your other half wants a cool, airy and open house in some English countryside.
Instead of one of you “sucking it up” and agreeing to a proper that he/she doesn’t want to live in, I suggest trying out the following.
Find the Root of the Disagreement
After extending the search area to a few more towns, you’ve finally bumped into a lovely house. While you are more the proactive ‘type A” –that means, you want it, you want it now! – your husband thinks you should wait and put this one on the back burner. While your spouse feels instantly connected to the next house, you just don’t feel any attraction to it.
This could be a matter of different tastes!
You might have been dreaming of something Victorian – thanks to Jane Austen and Frances Hodgson Burnett – with lots of colors, exciting history, intricately designed woodwork, a charming front porch and maybe a few ghosts too. On the other side, your spouse could fall in love with a chic contemporary property that looks all new inside – white walls and ceilings, minimalist aesthetics, sophisticated settings, granite countertops and a posh outdoor landscape.
Perhaps the origin of this problem goes back to your childhood. If you grew up living in the warmth and coziness of an English country house, it’s not now that you would trade it for the quirkiness and unpredictable character of a cookie-cutter house.
List Down the Wants and Needs
Why do you want to move out of your house? What is it that you are looking for in the new place?
If you can’t seem to reach a mutual agreement, I suggest you and your spouse sit down and list your wants and needs.
Each of your lists might include things like a central air conditioning unit, a three-car garage, an extra bedroom and an outdoor space – mostly physical and concrete stuff. Once you are done with the listing stage, take each of your answers and think of why they are important to you?, are they necessary? and then, rank them in order of priority.
Oh and this activity is to be carried out separately.
Trust me, this really works. You’ll realize how off you were with what you wanted and what you actually needed.
Make a List of Pros and Cons…Together
On a weekend, take a walk in the neighborhood, spend some time talking with residents and get to know about the latest crime in the neighborhood.
Once you have all the necessary information, identify what you like and what you don’t like about the property. Note down all the benefits and drawbacks of living in the neighborhood.
Understand What Really Makes a Home
It’s never about how big the house is. It’s how happy the home is. It’s hardly about sophistication and aesthetics, but it’s always about comfort, warmth and coziness.
A huge house with a lush golf course doesn’t always feel like home.
Think about what aspect of a house makes you comfortable. Is it a charming neighborhood and its friendly neighbors? Is it kids riding bikes on the sidewalks? Or, the style of a house?