Unwed homebuyers tie financial knot

When real estate purchase precedes 'I do'

Jude Galligan and Amber Gugino bought a condo together a year and a half ago, putting them right into the mainstream of American real estate, where signing a real estate contract these days often precedes saying "I do."

What the Austin, Texas, couple did before they got to the closing, however, is unusual — even though legal experts say it shouldn’t be. They put their financial intentions in writing to make sure they were on the same page if life’s "what ifs" — breakup, death, job loss — were to unfold.