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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34105
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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Our mother left our family home in 1982, she remained on the

Resolved Question:

Our mother left our family home in 1982, she remained on the deeds. Our late father died in 2001 and the house became our mother's. We have an issue as our brother moved back to our father's home just before our father went into hospital. He took over the house and has refused to leave or pay his way for nearly 14 years. He also has a very unpredictable side. My sister and i have often asked on our mother's behalf (as their relationship has broken down) what are his intentions? He just keeps asking for more time. We have now asked him to buy at the market value from the deed holder but he is reluctant and say's he has no savings. My mother either wants to put my sister and I on the deeds or leave the property solely to us in her will? My mother feels as he has paid no rent, he has has more than his share with his financial freedom each month over the years. To add he has changed the locks and we are not allowed nor invited to the property. My mother pays insurance on the property. My brother becomes very defensive and aggressive when approached, he is not trustworthy and has asked to release equity and have our three names put on the deeds, this will not happen. He stated because we have asked for him to buy the property "we can not go back as a family". What can we do and if our mother leaves the property to my sister and i solely would he have any legal rights?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is ***** *****
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
For clarity the house belongs to your mother - your brother lives there but pays no rent?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

That is correct, and he refuses to. We are all scared as his behaviour is unpredictable. He is 44 with no spouse or children. My mother is 71 and scared to withdraw her permission although there was never any permission as he just took over and said he would buy her out but needed a year this has been extended several times by himself. His latest is "we need to help him to help us" by releasing equity and he will pay it back. We know that he has no intention once the money is released, our mother would not do that. Our mother's intention (because he has had around 80,000 over the years as mortgage/rent free that he has had more than his share of inheritance) is to leave the house to her daughters (me and my sister) as she thinks this is fair. Just to be clear how unpredictable he is, he hospitalised a work colleague 2 years ago for having a joke on their works night out. He earns around 28,000.

Thank you

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Is your mother willing to take action to deal with this now?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

The only action she feels safe with is either having our names put on the deeds or leaving the house to us solely and leaving him off the will. We want to know is that straight forward or does he have rights? On her death we would then withdraw permission for him to remain there, if we can as the house would be ours? Currently we don't legally have a say as it is our mum's house.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
I am sorry - I meant is she willing to take action to force him to leave now?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

What we are trying to do at the moment my sister and I is get him to buy or ask him to leave so the house can be sold but he keeps coming up with excuses and won't leave. Our mother won't force him out legally as she will be worried for herself and our stepfather. Our brother in all this feels he is in the right and how dare we ask him to leave. We are not dealing with someone who see other's perspectives or cares. He always wants to have control or the upper hand. He has also carried out works without permission on the house, not sure what but he did mention electrics and won't let anyone in to value the property or check the heating gas electrics. As I said he changed the locks. We want to do this all as cheaply as possible as my sister and I will be paying all costs will, deeds etc. Our mother only has their pensions to live off. He would quite happily steal our inheritance if he could.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
How much (best guess) is the property worth?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I searched on zoopla and the neighbours house which has sold since 1995 is identical and their value is 84,000. It is semi-detached.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
So he can easily raise a mortgage for the amount if the matter is forced?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I don't know his credit rating but I would think so - he said he wants to avoid fees. He is quite angry at the current situation. He ideally, we think, wants the house for nothing and probably thinks once our mother dies he will be entitled. He won't get a mortgage now and never intended to. I know he has a car loan, he has also stated getting a mortgage for the value would ruin his chances of having a family as he then couldn't live like he would like! he stated " he only has a small window left do get married and have children and getting a mortgage at this stage would ruin that!" Any excuse. Does he have rights and what is the best solution, as he will just keep coming up with excuses.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
As things stand your mother can in fact force this situation by giving your brother written notice to vacate the property in say three months and at the end of that time taking action to force him out.
I do understand that she does not wish to provoke this - although it would be an effective way of forcing the issue and ensuring that your brother realises that it is in his interest to raise the money to buy your mother out.
As a starting point she should instruct a locksmith to attend her property and effect entry for an inspection - this would show that she understands her legal position and intends to exercise her rights.
If she prefers she can indeed Will the Property to you and your sister - BUT if she does that she must leave a statement making it plain that she feels that your brother has already had his share of the inheritance through his remaining in the property
In fact it would be a little easier for you and your sister if your mother left him a small share - say 10% so that he becomes a joint owner of the property making it easier for you and your sister to
apply to the courts for the sale of the property
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

If he was a joint owner would he have a say if we wanted to sell? What if he refused to sell? as he has refused for it to be put on the open market recently. How would it make things easier?

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
As joint owners of the property you can simply apply to the court for an order for sale - which will be granted
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

would it be that simple if it was left to my sister and I?

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
No you would have to follow the same method that your mother would have to
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thank you I think that makes things clearer. I needed to speak with my sister. I think we understand that he would have squatters rights and if he owns a small share he wouldn't have those rights? could he be left say 1% - 0.5% as he has already had 100% of the value of the house?

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
He does not have squatters rights at all
However from what you have said your mother is not likely to wish to take any action to force the issue.
Once she has died it is simply a fact that it is in fact easier to force a sale against a joint owner than go the more complex routes of evicting him
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thank you, ***** ***** could it be a small percentage like 1% or 0.5% he is left as had 100% of the value?

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Of course in fact what he has had is free accommodation - not any capital
1% would be a safer bet
Clare
Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for your assistance, it is much appreciated.