How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Thomas Your Own Question
Thomas
Thomas, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7602
Experience:  UK solicitor
28732269
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Thomas is online now

My ex partner has the sole payment of the mortgage although

Resolved Question:

My ex partner has the sole payment of the mortgage although the deed is in both names. he moved out two years ago and I have since been putting money in his account so that he is not out of pocket. He has now asked me to buy him 100% or he sell the house to someone else. My role has always been taking care of all the property expenses while he only paid the morgage. Please advice what options I have in this situation
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Are there any children of the relationship?

Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
10 years together no children
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Okay.

Are you able to refinance and obtain a mortgage offer in your sole name?

Did you execute a declaration of trust declaring your respective percentage interests in the equity of the property?

Kind regards,

Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Not at the moment but this is something I am looking not. Not sure of the second question as he has adviced the bank not to engage with me
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Okay.

Drafting your answer now. 5 mins please.

Kind regards,


Tom
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi

Thank you for your question and patience, I’m Tom and I’ll try to help you.

My answer assumes that you are both registered as the owners (ie. joint proprietors of the property on the land registry title for the property.

First of all, if you and you partner presently hold the house jointly (as joint tenants) then each person's share would pass to the other upon death regardless of any directon made in any Will. If this is not what you want then you should sever the joint tenancy by using Form SEV from the Land Registry (you will have to send it to them and if you have any questions about completing the form you should call their customer service number - they are very helpful):-
http://www1.landregistry.gov.uk/publications/?pubtype=49


You will then hold you interests as tenants in common, meaning that your respective shares will pass according to their wills or under the intestacy rules. Your partner need not sign the form provided you follow the instructions.

Your partner cannot simply sell his interest alone to another person. Your signature would be required on the land registry transfer document to transfer the title.

However, he can force the sale of the property by making (or posturing to make) an application to Court. If you cannot demonstrate sufficient finance to receive a mortgage offer to buy him out and transfer the equity in to your name then is his only option unless you agree to a sale to another private buyer. A local solicitor would be able to do this for you and these orders are seldom refused by the Court.

A declaration of trust is a deed which is sometimes execute by joint owners confirming their respective percentage interests in the property and responsibilities in terms of outoings (eg mortgage payments).


In the absence of any express agreement in the form of a declaration of trust there is presumption that the proceeds of sale are split equally since both parties are presumed to have a 50% interest each.

However if either party contributed more the financing of the purchase or has maintained the majority of the mortgage then this may be taken in to account and they will receive more of the proceeds of sale, but if agreement on the fair percentage split cannot be reached informally then the party seeking to claim more than 50% would have to litigate to prove it.. It is usually better to negotiate and settle unless one party is being particularly unreasonable in their demands.
So, if you cannot obtain a mortgage offer in your sole name and/or cannot afford to buy him out then the best policy - if you think he won’t apply to court for an order for sale – is to either do nothing or drag negotiation out with him to give you time to refinance.

My goal is to provide you with a good service. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up issues specifically relating to your question.

Kindly rate my answer if you are satisfied with the information I have provided.

Kind regards,


Tom
Thomas and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Tom,


Thank you for the advice.


Am I entitled to buy 50% off the property since the property is both in our names. Please advice


 

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

If there is no declaration of trust stating otherwise, then he would be presumed to own 50% and you the other 50%.

Therefore, unless you were able to negotiate with him and agree that you should be regarded as owning more than 50% then, yes, you would be buying the remaining 50% from him.

If you were able to demonstrate that you are able to pay a fair price to him then a court would likely enforce you buying his remaining share if it proceeded to litigation.

Please remember to rate my answer.

Kind regards
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Tom


Thank you again.


Just tying to figure out how this site works.


Anyway, the mortgage is in his name but the deed are in both names. Does this mean I can buy his 50%. I have had the property valued and there is equity of the house is £20,000

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Yes, you can buy his half provided that you can do this together with getting a mortgage offer in your sole name.

If the title is registered in both your names then the mortgage will also be in both your names.

Tom
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Could you let me know what steps or things I need to do to move this forward as he has been problematic especially since Oct 2013

Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Hi

I'm just repeating what I said above really.

You need to:-
1. See if you can get a mortgage offer in your sole name
2. Negotiate an amount payable to him to buy his share of the equity.

Once you have done 1 & 2, instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf to carry it out.

Please remember to rate my answer.

Kind regards,


Tom
Expert:  Thomas replied 3 years ago.
Is there any further information you require?

I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on the information I have provided.

If not, please rate my answer.

Kind regards,


Tom