If you’re LGBTQ, you’ve probably run into discrimination before. But you probably didn’t realize that prejudices can impact you buying a home, even after a deal has been cut, and you’re in the closing process. All it takes is one person who previously owned the home or was an heir to the property you’re buying to get in the way. In some cases they may be able to destroy the deal, in others, they could create costly delays which may cause the deal to fall through.
Because discrimination remains a serious issue for members of the LGBTQ community. Understanding which issues could arise can help you to better prepare in case something happens during the closing process of your house. It also doesn’t hurt to have an LGBTQ friendly title company and real estate agent on your side to watch over the deal, research the title and get you your home without hassle or worry.
Here are a few ways that someone who is homophobic could slow down or ruin your chances of buying a home at closing.
A Previous Owner Challenges Your Title
Suppose you’re a gay couple with children and you are trying to purchase a home from a seller. The seller does not mind that the gay couple has children or that they plan to move into his/her home. But a previous owner, privy to the situation, attempts to block the sale of the home by staking a claim. Their claim states that it belongs to them for being a family member or heir to the property or estate.
Although the previous owners understand that he or she will probably not win, they still go through the court process just to impede the buying process and cost you as the couple more money so you have to defend yourself. This costly and timely process isn’t always doable which can cause the deal to fall through. So how can you protect yourself from this? By purchasing title insurance you’ll be able to defend the property from this type of claim because the insurance should cover the costs of the claim and get it resolved.
A Contractor Uses a Lien to Financially Damage You as a Buyer
Another situation is if a contractor ends up not being gay friendly. After your home is constructed, the contractor learns that it is for an LGBTQ person and decides to put a lien on the house you paid them to work on (whether it is real or not, or legal or illegal) for the sole purpose of delaying the closing. Through a lengthy court process, the contractor will attempt to bankrupt or financially damage you as a buyer. Although they probably won’t win it, they can take a serious chunk of money from you which could cause you to back off the deal.
To prevent this type of discrimination, it’s important to find LGBTQ friendly contractors. Do some research before hiring a contractor and leaving yourself vulnerable to this type of harassment. You can contact a local LGBTQ community center or see if the town or city you live in has an LGBTQ group that can make recommendations for companies they’ve worked with previously for similar projects.
Neighbors Use Outdated Ordinances to Deprive You of Your Home
Neighbors in your community can also try to obstruct your legal right to use your home by bringing up archaic and old zoning ordinances. That’s why its important to use a title company with a solid reputation. During the closing process, your title company will search for zoning restrictions and ensure the house you’re buying is for residential living. But mistakes can happen, even to the best so it is also important to have a title insurance policy in case this issue would arise.
Discrimination in housing and real estate towards the LGBTQ community is still alive and well so it’s important to know what and how issues can arise. By being prepared with an LGBTQ friendly title company and real estate agent, you’ll be a step closer to avoiding any delays or issues and have less troubles buying your new home.