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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Hi Alex, I contacted you about 7 months ago regarding a

Customer Question

Hi Alex,

I contacted you about 7 months ago regarding a dispute that I am currently having with my brother. We jointly own a 5 bedroom house together and our mortgage term ended back in February 2014, our outstanding mortgage with the bank is £242, 000. We have asked the bank for an extension on this term. My brother and I had discussed and agreed that I would buy him out of the house, with this in mind we hired a chartered surveyor last year to carry out a full building survey on our property and give us a valuation of the property which came back as £475, 000. At the time that the report was received my brother agreed with the valuation and I was due to pay him £116, 000 which would his his equity from the property. The paper work has now been completed and all that is required is our signatures however as the property prices have increased in the last month or so my brother now wants another valuation of the property to be carried out and for us to buy him out at this new, higher price. Is he entitled to do this given that he had agreed and paid for the half of the 1st valuation survey?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.

Alex Watts :

Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return You do not need to wait here as you will get an email when I reply

Alex Watts :

Is it in writing he agreed to the sum of £116,000?

Alex Watts :

Was anything signed to confirm this?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

no unfortunately not. we have a declaration of trust letter that has been put together to confirm this agreement and we have some emails discussing this figure but nothing has been signed.

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

the declaration of trust letter hasn't been signed though, he is refusing to sign anything. the last time i spoke to him he told me that he wouldn't sign anything until I transferred £100, 000 to his account which is blackmail. Now he wants the house to be re-valued. I feel like he is never going to be happy with any conclusion.

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

Is there anything that I can do to make him to stick to the agreed price of £475, 000?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

If we can not reach an agreement soon then the house will be repossessed. MY brother is under the impression that if the house is repossessed by the bank then he will still receive some equity from the bank once they have sold on the property. From my understanding this is not the case and one the house has gone then it is gone and we will get nothing from the bank. Can you clarify this for me please?

Alex Watts :

Its bad news I am afriad

Alex Watts :

Until a contract is signed, either party can pull out

Alex Watts :

This is because you have no evidence in writing

Alex Watts :

If he had agreed in writing or does not dispute he verbally agreed to £116,00 then you would have a case

Alex Watts :

If it was the case that his acceptance was conditional upon it being completed within x time and you went over, or linked to the current market value, then again you would have a case

Alex Watts :

So if it hes not dispute that he agreed to £116k, you have a case

Alex Watts :

This is because even verbally it is a contract

Alex Watts :

And if he changes his mind, that is breach of contract

Alex Watts :

But the problem is enforcement.

Alex Watts :

If he refuses to sign then you would need a Court Order compelling him to do so

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

he isnt disputing that he agreed to price of £475, 000 but now that the market has increased he wants another valuation to take place and for me to buy him out at the new, possible higher value. I have an email outlining the agreement of his equity of £116, 000.

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

Could you clarify the process of repossession? If the house is repossessed I am assuming that we will get nothing in return. Can you confirm if this is correct?

Alex Watts :

Ok - you have a contract, he can't back out - otherwise you could sue

Alex Watts :

As for possession, it depends what charges are on there

Alex Watts :

The bank would take first charge and recover their money

Alex Watts :

Any balance would then be distributed to any other charges on the property and if not to the owners

Alex Watts :

Does that clarify?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

OK so as far as I am aware the only charges against the property is the outstanding mortgage of £242, 000. Can i assume that if and only if the bank sold on the property at a profit we would receive this equity?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

Going back to the verbal agreement of the £116, 000 my brother actually asked for something to be put in writing to confirm that I would pay him £116, 000 by x date - our joint solicitor has since put a declaration of trust letter together state this however my brother is now refusing to sign this. Could this be considered his agreement of the equity figure of £116K?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

Sorry on another note our joint solicitor is aware of the whole situation with regards to my brother agreeing to the house valuation and subsequent equity figure, would this be in my favour?

Alex Watts :

Yes that is correct

Alex Watts :

Verbal - he could be in breach

Alex Watts :

Solicitor - yes it would help you

Alex Watts :

Does this clarify?

JACUSTOMER-8ktynlv1- :

Yes. Thank you.

Alex Watts :

Great. If I could invite you to rate my answer before you go

Alex Watts :

If the system wont allow you please do say

Alex Watts :

If you need more help please let me knpw

Alex Watts :

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Alex Watts :

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