The query on is behalf of my fiance. He has a house he owns with an ex partner. He's been continuing to pay his half of the mortgage since he moved out 2 and a half years ago. (we have been together 2 years and live together now).
She keeps agreeing to sell then changes her mind. The mortgage is due for renewal in Feb 2013 so this was the 'crunch' time. She's changed her mind again. She can't buy him out as she can't get a mortgage due to her credit history... So to move on the house should be sold. If he defaults on the payments he will have a black mark. She has him over a barrel. Is there anything that can be done as he's been more than reasonable and it's crippling his current financial situation!
This problem is notuncommon. The first thing he should do is consider stopping paying the mortgagebecause that will focus the X's mind. He does not have to pay the mortgage allthe bills of a house that he does not live in (as far as the relationshipfinances go), although he remains liable to the lender if she stops paying. Whois currently living there at half price, and therefore it is hardly surprisingthat she is not in a rush to sell.
He needs to gethis solicitor to write to her, telling her that unless you agrees to sell theproperty. He will apply to court for an order for sale and he will ask thecourt to award costs against her.
He can ask thecourt to specify which agent is to be used, the marketing price, the price tobe accepted, and other matters such as she is not to be present when viewing totake place and she is not to obstruct the sale in any way.
I would probablythreaten to seek the mortgage payments back from her (there is no guarantee youwill get them, but he can threaten it) if she does not play ball, on the basis thathe paid them under "mistake" not knowing that he had no liability as he was notliving there and his liability was only limited to the lender
I assume that nochildren are involved because if children are involved my answer will probablybe completely different.
Can I helpfurther?
Meanwhile, pleasebear with me today because I will be online and off-line all day.
The next part isreally important for me:
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This is very useful advice so far, thank you. This situation must be so common. Fortunately there are no children involved, only a dog (who he is completely devoted to and pays more than half of any related bills!).
If he stops paying the mortgage as he has been up until now and she is able to pay until they sell on the understanding he's not been living there, and if he claims for money back from her for previous payments...is it still agreed that the property is 50/50 ownership and therefore any sales proceeds are split evenly?
I think there is concern that if he stops paying she may have more rights over the property, and he would struggle to claim his equal share (I recall something like this with my brother when he went through a messy divorce).
I understand that it costs about £1,500 for the initial legal advice to start proceedings on this. Is that the 'order of sale' you mentioned above? And then she could still refuse to sell and he has no leg to stand on. Which involves court proceedings and significant additional costs.
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So far so good.Unless there was an agreement when they bought the property as to what wouldhappen when they sold it than the proceeds are split 50-50, regardless of whateach has put in.
The situation iswell settled in the law, and she has no more rights over the property if hestops paying the mortgage. He can actually move back in he be wishes and cancome and go as he likes. He can actually move in with you! (That might focusher mind), but she can ask you to leave when he is no longer in the property(gone to the shops or work or the pub) and you can come back in as soon as hereturns. It might not be an option, but I mention to illustrate the situationhe is in.
It is also notuncommon (although more common with an aggrieved spouse whose wife has beenawarded the whole house and does not want to sign the transfer deed or contract),for the sale to be ordered by the court and for the other party to simplyrefused to sign any documentation. In that case, it is another application tocourt and an application for costs against the reluctant party. The judge canthen sign all the documents in her stead and let her have a costs order for theprivilege of doing so. Her reluctance is likely to cost her several thousandpounds. In that respect, she would be well advised to take legal advice herselfbecause her legal adviser will advise her that she cannot put this offindefinitely.
Thanks for your response with this enquiry. We have a number of other questions but agree that we need to get a solicitor involved to pursue now.
Can I assist further?
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