Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 12:32 PM
    • 9Posts
    • 0Thanks
    HowieLO6
    Legal advice post-separation
    • #1
    • 6th Oct 17, 12:32 PM
    Legal advice post-separation 6th Oct 17 at 12:32 PM
    One long-time reader, first-time poster here, and one who appreciates that this might not be the right forum for this, but I figured it was worth a try!

    To give a little context, I bought with my now-ex three years ago. The initial equity was around a 57/43% split in her favour, with her also being the bigger earner, and thus contributor to the mortgage. To date, she's paid c.22k and I've paid 11ks worth of mortgage. To add to that, the past year I've been back studying, so she has paid the entire mortgage, whilst I've been contributing c.£120 pm for certain bills. I've been paying said bills whilst living away from the flat since moving out in April.

    I'm not here to discuss why she couldnt resist her friend's brother (I know, but had to be clear that I'm trying to remain positive, etc), but I'm in a position where I need to know my legal rights with regards to whether or not I can insist that the property be sold, and what my rights are to any income from the flat, given my stake in it.

    With regards to my rights as to insisting the flat be sold, its (maybe) a little petty of me, I know, but I spent some serious time over the summer redecorating (at a time when I foolishly thought that we could work through her indiscretions), including rebuilding the kitchen for her, to give her some calm space in which to live. I've also handbuilt fitted kitchen and bathroom furniture, and I don't really want her to enjoy it with her new beau. So, despite her paying the mortgage this past year or so, can I refuse any attempt for her to buy me out and insist that it goes onto the open market?

    Regarding the income, I know she intends to rent out the second bedroom, so as to ease the mortgage burden. I've no problem with her wanting to do that, but given that I own a certain percentage of the property, am I entitled to any share of that?

    Obviously a bit of an odd subject to be discussing on this forum, but I'm not sure who else to ask. She is, I suspect, already well lawyered up, given her circle of City friends and family, but I'd like to know if I have any rights.
    Thanks all.
Page 1
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 6th Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    • 486 Posts
    • 357 Thanks
    Comms69
    • #2
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    • #2
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:01 PM
    No, if she wants to buy you out that will be the first option the court considers. You cannot be petty and insist it's sold on the open market.


    Yes you are entitled to consider the rental income as part of your contribution.


    Lawyered or not, it is irrelevant. - out of curiosity did you buy as tenants in common 57/43?
    • mrginge
    • By mrginge 6th Oct 17, 1:07 PM
    • 4,202 Posts
    • 7,473 Thanks
    mrginge
    • #3
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:07 PM
    • #3
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:07 PM
    Has she offered to buy you out?

    Who is driving this issue? You or her?
    • saajan_12
    • By saajan_12 6th Oct 17, 1:13 PM
    • 848 Posts
    • 556 Thanks
    saajan_12
    • #4
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:13 PM
    • #4
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:13 PM
    Firstly, I'm terribly sorry to hear that.

    1. Proceeds from sale / your share
    - Did you own the property as Joint Tenants or Tenants in Common? With TIC, the ownership split is specified, whereas with JT the starting point is 50/50.
    - Your mortgage payments included paying interest as well as capital so her paying 11k more wouldn't constitute an extra 11k equity.
    - It's unfeasible to accurately go through who paid for which mortgage, who paid house bills, who paid for the dinner.. you were living as one household. Arguably your partner supporting the household during your studies was a joint decision to improve future earnings for the household.
    - Similarly its unfeasible to compare and put a value to who did more work around the house.. renovating the kitchen/bathroom woudn't significantly add value but it does constitute work.. it all comes out in the wash as that's how you were happy living together.
    - The only thing I'd consider is perhaps the difference in initial deposit if that money was gathered largely before the relationship.

    So I'd suggest from the current house value, deduct the mortgage balance, then each of you gets your initial deposit x house value change and then split the rest 50/50.

    2. Who buys the house
    In the short term, in order to sell the house both of you must agree so you could refuse any sale to your ex. However ultimately the ex could force a sale through the courts. This will likely be expensive but if you are unreasonable in refusing a proceedable offer from the ex at market value, then the court can order a sale to the ex and you could end up with the court costs.

    I understand that might be upsetting, but can the ex even buy you out ie raise a mortgage in her name alone and pay your equity share too? The renovations are fittings and furniture, you're only torturing yourself by attaching emotion to them.

    3. Rental income
    Who is living there at the moment? As (part) owner and occupier, your ex can have a lodger and collect the full rent. You wouldn't be the lodger's landlord and so aren't entitled to any rent. You have equal right to move in or use the property, and ultimately to get the property sold as soon as possible, through a court if necessary.
    In the meantime you and the ex can agree (but don't have to) say, that the ex compensates you half the market rent for the property for your share and you both split the mortgage 50/50, or say that she covers the whole mortgage and has full use of the property, or whatever.
    Last edited by saajan_12; 06-10-2017 at 1:24 PM. Reason: hit the post button too early
    • steampowered
    • By steampowered 6th Oct 17, 1:33 PM
    • 1,787 Posts
    • 1,700 Thanks
    steampowered
    • #5
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:33 PM
    • #5
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:33 PM
    With regards to my rights as to insisting the flat be sold, its (maybe) a little petty of me, I know, but I spent some serious time over the summer redecorating (at a time when I foolishly thought that we could work through her indiscretions), including rebuilding the kitchen for her, to give her some calm space in which to live. I've also handbuilt fitted kitchen and bathroom furniture, and I don't really want her to enjoy it with her new beau.
    Originally posted by HowieLO6
    You are correct. This is extremely petty of you.

    With any relationship break-up, the objective must be to come to a sensible amicable arrangement that lets both sides move on their lives.

    So, despite her paying the mortgage this past year or so, can I refuse any attempt for her to buy me out and insist that it goes onto the open market?
    No, you can't.

    The only way to force the house onto the open market would be to get a court order (which would take months and cost thousands). And even then, if your ex wanted to buy you out, the judge would probably order that instead. And the judge would probably order you to pay your ex's legal costs for being so unreasonable.

    What you need to do is try and work out what percentage of the equity is yours. If you signed a co-ownership deed when you bought the property find it and read it.

    Then work out roughly how much the house is worth.

    That will give you an idea of what a fair buy-out would be.

    Regarding the income, I know she intends to rent out the second bedroom, so as to ease the mortgage burden. I've no problem with her wanting to do that, but given that I own a certain percentage of the property, am I entitled to any share of that?
    Yes, if you are a co-owner and still paying bills, I think you should be getting a share of the rent - but only if you are still paying your share of the mortgage.

    The alternative would be to move back into the second bedroom yourself, until she buys you out. Which you are entitled to do as a co-owner.
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 1:34 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    • #6
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:34 PM
    • #6
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:34 PM
    Firstly, thanks all for the insight. I'm endeavouring to avoid the whole court side of things, as it strikes me as a) a waste of money and b) the world is a tough enough space without dragging through the courts with someone you once loved. I'll answer in turn, if thats the done thing here!

    Has she offered to buy you out?

    Who is driving this issue? You or her?
    Originally posted by mrginge
    No, but I suspect she will. Very much her driving this, as I was very much the one driving the side of endeavouring to work through things. I suspect that getting someone in to rent will mean she can use this when remortgaging under her name.

    Firstly, I'm terribly sorry to hear that.

    1. Proceeds from sale / your share
    - Did you own the property as Joint Tenants or Tenants in Common? With TIC, the ownership split is specified, whereas with JT the starting point is 50/50.
    - Your mortgage payments included paying interest as well as capital so her paying 11k more wouldn't constitute an extra 11k equity.
    - It's unfeasible to accurately go through who paid for which mortgage, who paid house bills, who paid for the dinner.. you were living as one household. Arguably your partner supporting the household during your studies was a joint decision to improve future earnings for the household.
    - Similarly its unfeasible to compare and put a value to who did more work around the house.. renovating the kitchen/bathroom woudn't significantly add value but it does constitute work.. it all comes out in the wash as that's how you were happy living together.
    - The only thing I'd consider is perhaps the difference in initial deposit if that money was gathered largely before the relationship.

    So I'd suggest from the current house value, deduct the mortgage balance, then each of you gets your initial deposit x house value change and then split the rest 50/50.
    Originally posted by saajan_12
    Thanks! It happens; I'd much rather it didn't end like this, but if its what she needs then so be it.
    - I believe its a TIC agreement. Even if it wasn't, I wouldn't want a 50/50 split. She's put more money into it and deserves said proceeds.
    - I'm not sure how the equity split will be calculated, but I put in 55k and I think the flats gone up from 500 to 600k; she thinks its only gone up to 560, as per our remortgage 18 months ago.
    - Interesting to hear about the mortgage and our couples view regarding providing for better future finances. But does this really mean anything when we were only engaged, even though we'd been together 12 years?
    - Regarding the kitchen, etc, thats fine, I'll have to accept that. Given how awful the kitchen was before I redid it all I'll disagree on that, but I won't dig my heels in. More bitter that she'll get to enjoy the fruits and love of my labour than anything else.
    - The money was gathered whilst we were together, albeit mostly while we weren't living together. The money I had was a gift from my parents (joys of being a public sector workere rather than a financial bod), so I'm not sure what that means.

    No, if she wants to buy you out that will be the first option the court considers. You cannot be petty and insist it's sold on the open market.


    Yes you are entitled to consider the rental income as part of your contribution.


    Lawyered or not, it is irrelevant. - out of curiosity did you buy as tenants in common 57/43?
    Originally posted by Comms69
    - Im hoping the court is avoidable. In terms of valuation, how does it work? For example, I'd want to actually do some decorating before it gets valued and who's valuation is final? And you're right, it is petty. Bugs me that she gets to own the place without having to pay stamp duty!
    - Interesting; she said I'd have no entitlement to it, given that I haven't been paying towards to the mortgage, just the household bills.
    - And TIC, I think. I don't want a 50/50 split, she's put more money in.


    Again, thanks all
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 6th Oct 17, 1:41 PM
    • 486 Posts
    • 357 Thanks
    Comms69
    • #7
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:41 PM
    • #7
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:41 PM
    Well if she says no, you could just move back in....
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 1:43 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    • #8
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:43 PM
    • #8
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:43 PM
    You are correct. This is extremely petty of you.

    With any relationship break-up, the objective must be to come to a sensible amicable arrangement that lets both sides move on their lives.



    No, you can't.

    The only way to force the house onto the open market would be to get a court order (which would take months and cost thousands). And even then, if your ex wanted to buy you out, the judge would probably order that instead. And the judge would probably order you to pay your ex's legal costs for being so unreasonable.

    What you need to do is try and work out what percentage of the equity is yours. If you signed a co-ownership deed when you bought the property find it and read it.

    Then work out roughly how much the house is worth.

    That will give you an idea of what a fair buy-out would be.


    Yes, if you are a co-owner and still paying bills, I think you should be getting a share of the rent - but only if you are still paying your share of the mortgage.

    The alternative would be to move back into the second bedroom yourself, until she buys you out. Which you are entitled to do as a co-owner.
    Originally posted by steampowered
    I know it is, thats why I'm hesitant to mention it, but felt that honesty was probably best! I somewhat suspect that I was strung along for the summer, as she knew full well that I'd already bought the raw materials to rebuild and wanted to help out, but theres nothing I can really do about it.

    Good to know I can't do that. I'll remove that as an option. I'll be sure to find the agreement when I'm next over clearing out my bits and pieces.

    And as much as I'd like to do that - I'd even have my own bathroom! - it wouldn't be fair on her, would only serve to stress her out. The parent's study will do for the time being.

    Appreciate the honesty and advice, thanks.
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    • #9
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    • #9
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    Well if she says no, you could just move back in....
    Originally posted by Comms69
    That'd only go to stress her out. The area is one that I love, and has my sports club at the bottom of the road, friends in the area, etc, but it would make life difficult for her. I've got the parents' study to sleep in for as long as I need, so I don't need to impose myself like that, however tempted I am!
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 6th Oct 17, 1:46 PM
    • 486 Posts
    • 357 Thanks
    Comms69
    That'd only go to stress her out. The area is one that I love, and has my sports club at the bottom of the road, friends in the area, etc, but it would make life difficult for her. I've got the parents' study to sleep in for as long as I need, so I don't need to impose myself like that, however tempted I am!
    Originally posted by HowieLO6


    Oh I see, you still think you have a chance.


    You see if someone did that to me, I'd ensure I made life as uncomfortable as possible
    • xylophone
    • By xylophone 6th Oct 17, 1:54 PM
    • 23,124 Posts
    • 13,402 Thanks
    xylophone
    Is there no possibility that you would be able to buy her out after you have completed your studies and are working again?
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 1:56 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    Oh I see, you still think you have a chance.


    You see if someone did that to me, I'd ensure I made life as uncomfortable as possible
    Originally posted by Comms69
    Its less that and more that I adore her family. They're good people and worry about her enough as it is. I suspect it wouldn't do me any favours being back there too. That said, pretty perceptive of you, I'll give you that!
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 1:59 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    Is there no possibility that you would be able to buy her out after you have completed your studies and are working again?
    Originally posted by xylophone
    Well, I might be able to (I'm studying at a pretty good uni), but they won't finish until next May. She's the one who'd possibly be able to afford to buy me out at the moment. I've got around a 17% equity in it at the moment, so I suspect I would be able to, but thats a fair few months away. Is there something to consider in terms of timing of said buyout then?
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 6th Oct 17, 2:04 PM
    • 486 Posts
    • 357 Thanks
    Comms69
    Its less that and more that I adore her family. They're good people and worry about her enough as it is. I suspect it wouldn't do me any favours being back there too. That said, pretty perceptive of you, I'll give you that!
    Originally posted by HowieLO6


    Best of luck buddy.


    Sometimes there needs to be some harsh comments, so if I was your friend and you told me the above I would say this: "she's using you, abusing your good nature and will never respect you."


    But we aren't friends, so I wont say that. Genuinely hope it works out, but being the nice guy is no better than being the nasty guy. I'd suggest a quick clean break. Her family may even just give her the cash to buy you out.
    • mrginge
    • By mrginge 6th Oct 17, 2:05 PM
    • 4,202 Posts
    • 7,473 Thanks
    mrginge
    No, but I suspect she will. Very much her driving this, as I was very much the one driving the side of endeavouring to work through things. I suspect that getting someone in to rent will mean she can use this when remortgaging under her name.
    Originally posted by HowieLO6
    Maybe tell her you’re in no rush to sort it out (even if you are) but if she wants to buy you out she can make you an offer.

    So you throw the ball back in her court and go from there.
    • HowieLO6
    • By HowieLO6 6th Oct 17, 2:07 PM
    • 9 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    HowieLO6
    Best of luck buddy.


    Sometimes there needs to be some harsh comments, so if I was your friend and you told me the above I would say this: "she's using you, abusing your good nature and will never respect you."


    But we aren't friends, so I wont say that. Genuinely hope it works out, but being the nice guy is no better than being the nasty guy. I'd suggest a quick clean break. Her family may even just give her the cash to buy you out.
    Originally posted by Comms69
    Appreciate the honesty. Sometimes things need to be said. And given that they're minted, I suspect they'll do just that.
    • Lysimache
    • By Lysimache 6th Oct 17, 2:10 PM
    • 53 Posts
    • 20 Thanks
    Lysimache
    Have a chat with a lawyer just to make sure you aren't screwed if her family are quite minted. Doesn't mean you have to go down any sort of legal route but it may be helpful to pay someone to objectively look at the situation and see what % you should get etc?
    • G_M
    • By G_M 6th Oct 17, 2:14 PM
    • 41,460 Posts
    • 47,842 Thanks
    G_M
    I may have missed your answer but;

    do you own as joint tenants or tenants in common? That impacts on shares.

    Beyond that:

    * forget reconciliation- too late
    * forget her family - focus on moving on
    * find a financially mutually acceptable way forward
    * snice you can't afford to buy her out that leaves two options:
    a) she buys you out
    b) open market sale
    agree to whichever she prefers. Then move on wih your life

    * if she wants to buy you out, get 3 estate agents round and ask specifically for a realistic sale price - NOT just what they'd 'market' it for (often higher).
    Also look at recent sold prices of similar local properties.
    Then agree a market value for the property.

    As to how much you 'own' Vs her share, there are several ways to calculate, but start by answering the question above!
    Last edited by G_M; 06-10-2017 at 7:06 PM.
    • saajan_12
    • By saajan_12 6th Oct 17, 3:14 PM
    • 848 Posts
    • 556 Thanks
    saajan_12
    - I believe its a TIC agreement. Even if it wasn't, I wouldn't want a 50/50 split. She's put more money into it and deserves said proceeds.
    Originally posted by HowieLO6
    I may have missed your answer but;

    do you own as joint tenants or tenants in common? That impacts on shares.
    Originally posted by G_M
    OP- please do check and confirm, as this could cut short the debate on shares.
    • xylophone
    • By xylophone 7th Oct 17, 11:12 AM
    • 23,124 Posts
    • 13,402 Thanks
    xylophone
    Would she agree to wait until you are in a position to buy her out?
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

2,496Posts Today

6,860Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • RT @LordsEconCom: On Tuesday Martin Lewis, Hannah Morrish & Shakira Martin gave evidence to the Cttee. Read the full transcript here: https?

  • Ta ta for now. Half term's starting, so I'm exchanging my MoneySavingExpert hat for one that says Daddy in big letters. See you in a week.

  • RT @thismorning: Can @MartinSLewis' deals save YOU cash? ???? https://t.co/igbHCwzeiN

  • Follow Martin