Post # 1
Looking for some advice as to best approach / options. Fiance and I are likely heading towards a split because things have been rocky for months. We’ve tried ongoing counselling (together and separately) and not much has improved if at all.
Problem is, we have a mortgage together and he is dead set on me moving out and just arranging flatmates to cover my share of the mortgage repayments, while keeping both names on the mortgage. I would rather either sell or buy him out for his share however he is not keen on this. What would you do in this situation because I don’t want to be legally tied to him through a mortgage if we do split?
P.S. There is no cheating or anything of that sort involved. I went through something traumatic many years ago and the emotional impact has made it challenging to make this romantic relationship (or possibly any with me) work. He cannot wait anymore than the years that he has already invested, to have a ‘normal’ relationship with me, which I can totally understand as unfortunate as it is.
Post # 2
l1989 : you need to get off the mortgage as you will still be liable for ther payments etc. If he pays late it will be counted against you too. Plus if you want to purchase your own house (or anything) owing on this one will severely limit what you can get.
If he can’t afford to buy you out and get a new mortgage on his own, then you’ll need to sell the house to get your money back and get off the loan.. Do not leave your name on the mortgage.
Post # 3
I am sorry about what you are going through.
Absolutely get your name off the mortgage. I believe he would have to refinance on his own to do that. There is no reason to keep your name on. It’s just a liability for you.
Ask him what any new girlfriends will think if they find out that he still co-owns his home with an ex fiance
Post # 4
mrstodd2bee : BuzzedBumblingBee : My thoughts are similar to both of you and I would like to sell the house entirely if not sell my share to him or buy his, but the problem is he is refusing to go down that route which I find odd. It’s really tricky because we both own it 50/50 so I can’t force him to agree with my preference. We’d have to come to a mutual agreement.
I’ll try your advice about stressing what his future partner would think when they find out he co-owns a house with an ex fiance. I am completely at a loss as to what to do here.
Post # 5
Go see an attorney. 50% partners force sales all the time.
p.s. did you not put an agreement in place in case you broke up?
Post # 6
This is insane. The risk you would expose yourself to by staying on the mortgage is astronomical. Not to mention the fact that having that mortgage (even if timely paid) on your back will make it likely impossible for you to buy your own property later.
Is his refusal because he cannot afford to buy you out and and doesn’t want to have to leave the house? If so, too bad for him. Absolutely talk to a lawyer, because you can absolutely force the sale – you do.not.need for him agree – you absolutely can force him to agree with your preference.
Unless, god forbid, you have some joint ownership agreement where you spelled out that all future decisions about the house would have to be unanismous between you. Man, I really hope you didn’t do that.
Post # 7
If you are willing to sell or buy him out you need to also be open to him buying you out. Which seems likely considering he has voiced he is happy to stay and you would be happy to sell.
Breakups and divorces get messy because people are too hung up on the outcome that feels like a win rather than a clean quick break, which is the real win.
Have gun buy your share and move on. Tell him one of you takes over the mortgage or it is sold and let him sit on that information for a week or so. Tell him under no circumstances will your name remain on a mortgage after a breakup.
If he hasn’t conceded after the week have a lawyer send him a letter stating you will persue legal action forcing him to agree to sell the property. In all likelihood the letter will be enough and you won’t have to see it through.
Does he think a reconciliation is on the cards?
Post # 8
zl27 : I was really hoping a lawyer wouldn’t be necessary because I feel like it sets a sour tone and I have no hard feelings towards him. I’d just like to get on with my life and go our separate ways civilly.. Stupidly we didn’t put an agreement in place in case we broke up, life lesson learnt.
Sephiroth : It is a huge risk indeed and very true that it would pretty much make it impossible for me to buy another property. I think he might not want to leave the house and maybe he doesn’t have the money yet to buy me out. Fortunately there isn’t any black and white agreement that decisions must be made unanimously.
zzar45 : Yes I am absolutely open to him buying out my share and I’ve told him the same however he still wants to find flatmates to cover my share until goodness knows how long. I agree that a clean break is the true win and I am hoping for it, I’ve been as co-operative as possible. I like your idea about telling him one of us takes it or it goes on the market, then giving him a week to think it over. I don’t think he thinks a reconciliation is on the cards because he is the one who brought up that the relationship isn’t working for him?
Post # 9
l1989 : He is setting a “sour tone” by trying to keep you on the mortgage. Explain to him one last time that you will not remain on the mortgage because you will be unable to get your own home, and how it would trash your credit should he be unable to cover the payments for unforseen reasons. He needs to refinance the home in his own name and pay you half of any equity in the home. This should be approached as a business transaction, not a relationship negotiation. Example below is for a divorce, but the same information applies:
Divorcing couples typically achieve an equity buyout when the spouse retaining the asset refinances the loan against it for an amount sufficient to satisfy the existing mortgage or loan, plus an additional amount to cover the other spouse’s equity interest. This is a cash-out refinance. For example, if a husband were to keep the marital home appraised at $300,000, and the mortgage against it is $200,000, he might refinance for $250,000, enough to pay the wife her half of the $100,000 in equity, assuming the court ordered a 50/50 split.
So yes, you need an attorney. Even if he is willing to take you off the mortgage, I don’t think he will be happy or able to have to pay you your portion of any equity. Don’t leave money on the table just because it’s easier to be done with things. You will also need a quitclaim to get your name off of the deed. (This is in the US, not sure about other countries.) GET AN ATTORNEY.
Post # 10
You either need to get him to agree to selling and/or buying you out, or get an attorney to force the issue. DO NOT keep your name on the mortgage. If you do, you are still liable for every payment for the next 30 years!
Post # 11
In addition, do NOT move out as he is telling you to do, he will change the locks and become even more difficult to deal with.Get an attorney TODAY..
Post # 12
If this is what it’s like to deal with him you have my sympathy. He is clueless. Why on earth would you want to remain on the mortgage for a house he’s living in? What’s in it for you? Of course he’ll benefit, he doesn’t have to come up with a buy out, but you will assume enormous risks. He needs to wake up. If he cant afford to buy you out then the house gets sold. End of story.
Post # 13
GET A LAWYER ASAP!!!!!! I cannot stress that enough. Protect yourself!!!!
Post # 14
This is really good advice – OP, do NOT move out until you have this settled and documented in an agreement, no matter how uncomfortable it may get. It may be the only leverage you have at this point. I don’t know what jurisdiction you’re in, but in the US, it may not be as easy to force a sale as some are suggesting, particularly if you own the house as joint tenants versus tenants in common. Definitely consult an attorney ASAP.
Unmarried couples contemplating buying a house together, please let this be a lesson to you!!!! At the end of the day, buying and owning property is a business transaction. Please treat it as such by having an agreement in place. mrstodd2bee :
Post # 15
l1989 : Yeah, coming from experience.. do not move out before you have something set in stone regarding him buying you out. I moved out of a house shared 50/50, and despite me owning it 50%, and it being the law that I was allowed in, no cop would help me out without having an attorney presen, which was going to cost me a lot. They said if I hadn’t actually moved out, it would be cut and dry, but that when one party moves out, they “give up part of their rights”. I’m sure this varies state to state, but definitely get your ducks in a row before officially moving out.
I was not able to force a sale, and neither was he. I was still responsible for 50% of the payments despite me not living in the home for 6 months. He was living very cheaply for those 6 months, and he also drug his feet on selling it because, why wouldn’t he?
We finally had to get an attorney involved to decide on the equity split and all of the terms of selling the house. It got very, very messy. Good luck to you, I hope it works out in your favor.