January 22, 2022

Alexandra Beer House

The Real Estate Experts

Is it a great concept to purchase a household with friends to get on the property ladder?

In their 30s, pals Andi Henderson and Sarah Macnab resolved to pool resources to purchase a modest, two-bedroom dwelling in Albert Town, Central Otago.

They have been living in separate cities, but they knew just about every other effectively, experienced previously flatted in Auckland and worked together with every other on Greenpeace expeditions at sea.

It was 1997, and Macnab was residing in Wanaka and performing as a seasonal ski patroller. Henderson was living in Auckland and performing as a technological writer.

“I experienced a smaller deposit and Andi had a little deposit. Primarily, we leveraged each other to get into house,” explains Macnab.

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They spoke to a mortgage loan broker, took out a house personal loan and Macnab lived in the house with flatmates shelling out hire, although Henderson remained dwelling and leasing in Auckland.

Did it work? For them, sure. So considerably so, that they did it once again. In 2004 Henderson moved to Christchurch, and leveraging the fairness from their Albert Town house, the buddies bought yet another dwelling, in Lyttelton.

Now each individual lives in their very own home, but both houses are jointly owned. “We’ve been in this arrangement for about 20 a long time,” says Macnab. “And it’s been a terrific factor for both equally of us.”

Sarah Macnab and her dog, Maisey. Sarah bought a property in Albert Town with her friend Andi Henderson in the 1980s. They still co-own it – and another house, in Christchurch – together.


Sarah Macnab and her dog, Maisey. Sarah acquired a house in Albert City with her mate Andi Henderson in the 1980s. They continue to co-individual it – and one more household, in Christchurch – alongside one another.

Consider about all the what-ifs

Wellington-based mostly mortgage adviser Clifford Lawson says he advises people today to believe carefully about obtaining households with spouse and children or buddies.

When it will come to essentially securing finance for team getting it can be additional complicated, he claims, and persons have to look at the broader money implications.

“People generally just want to know no matter if they can get a property finance loan in the very first instance. For any joint undertaking the place people today are placing cash collectively I sit them down and say have you definitely thought about it in depth, simply because effectively it’s like a organization business,” he states.

He advises persons to consider not just the repayments on the personal loan, but also all the other alternatives.

Obtaining any house involves because of diligence. With mates and family members, that can suggest also searching at person situations and how they may possibly have an impact on 1 a further and thinking about all the ‘what ifs’.

For instance, if two couples get with each other and then one person loses their career – what takes place? If desire prices go up can you all nevertheless make the repayments?

This Wellington property has two kitchens and living areas - making it an ideal versatile buy for friends or extended families.


This Wellington assets has two kitchens and living spots – generating it an excellent adaptable obtain for pals or prolonged households.

Buying with friends and family can mean also thinking about all the ‘what ifs’.


Getting with buddies and relatives can imply also thinking about all the ‘what ifs’.

Lives can alter

Henderson and Macnab are upfront that not all the things was effortless for them. “Both events have to have to address the other with complete regard,” says Henderson. “And understand what you’re finding into. People’s life can change.”

Even though they weren’t sharing the Albert City home on a working day-to-working day basis there had been nevertheless realities to take into consideration. “The catch for us was striving to organize some sort of lawful framework,” states Henderson.

This meant points like, what if one of them put in money for enhancements and the other a single didn’t – that would modify the share of the prices. Or if a person of them required to get married, what would transpire?

Or if, as Macnab candidly puts it, “one of us dropped useless.”

They settled on an arrangement they drafted them selves and emailed back again and forth. They’ve frequented lawyers to formalise preparations but ultimately have relied on “the massive trust” they have in just one yet another. “Every time we went to speak to lawyers they manufactured it so sophisticated and so expensive,” says Macnab.

Andi Henderson, at the second property he bought with his friend Sarah Macnab, in Lyttelton.


Andi Henderson, at the next home he acquired with his friend Sarah Macnab, in Lyttelton.

Antonia Brown, income director for Harcourts Wellington City, admits she was extra gung-ho when she purchased her initial property, a four bed room dwelling, in Wellington with two close friends again in the 1980s.

“We did not truly give it a large amount of assumed. The logic was it was cheaper than renting. I didn’t sense like I had a entire large amount to reduce,” she says.

But although property selling prices had been more affordable at that time, interest charges had been significantly increased – all over 14 per cent states Brown. To get by itself would only not have been achievable.

On the other hand, the expectations of Brown and her buddies turned out to be fairly different. One wanted to socialise and enjoy town lifestyle, a further desired to renovate and enhance the house.

Then just one went abroad, another moved out, and soon Brown was in the property by yourself. She ended up shopping for the other events out and ongoing to stay there with flatmates which helped her deal with the mortgage payments.

Take care of it like a small business

Brown would suggest other folks to be additional prepared if they have been contemplating likely into an settlement with friends of relatives.

“Research the greatest way to composition the home ownership,” she says. “And have a established of policies for how points will get the job done.”

Paying out interest to the legalities of the scenario is one thing Brown advises all buyers to do – like in passionate associations. “We see a lot of break-ups and just one get together always feels aggrieved.”

A very good to start with phase is to produce down probable problems and guidelines, she suggests.

Get anything suitable while, and buying with close friends or spouse and children can be an arrangement that can do the job nicely.

“I would advise other folks to not be fearful of wanting at diverse alternatives if they want to get into a property,” suggests Macnab.

“Treat it as a organization or a venture.”