Separation, informal, what should I get in writing?

Myself and my wife of 5 yrs, together 17, are separating.
We have 3 kids, 2 primary school, one just started secondary.
Neither of us can afford to buy the other out of the mortgage, but we have done sums and with family credit for her, we can just afford for me to rent locally (this is essential to us).
I earn more, but have a fairly flexible job so childcare will be effectively shared (her 4 days me 3, but probably evened up over the weekends).
With her additional family credit she has a similar income to me, topping up her part time work income.
We have worked out that if I transfer £250 approx a month she can afford to continue paying the mortgage (which is joint).
Selling the house is not an option at this stage because it will be detrimental to the kids, take them away from their friends, be a massive wrench as it is the perfect family home etc.

I am assuming that at this stage, and as childcare shared, the CSA aren't an issue?
My wife seems OK that the income levels are similar and appreciates the need for me to be local for kids schools, activities etc, my friendship group. I will be massively downgrading in terms of home and lifestyle, whilst she stays in our lovely home, but it's a sacrifice I'm happy to make, as long as where I live is nice enough for kids to stay and not resent.

What should I get in writing, if anything?
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Comments

  • WYSPECIAL
    WYSPECIAL Posts: 643 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    An informal agreement like that is only effective as long as you both agree so it doesn't really matter if it is in writing or not.

    CMS (previously CSA) don't need to be involved unless one of you wants to apply for an assessment.

    What are the long term plans around what will happen with FMH? It may be all amicable now but you are looking at 10+ years before your youngest will be 18. Will you be happy renting all that time with your money tied up in a house lived in by your ex? Will you still be ok with it when her new boyfriend moves in?
  • Yes thought of that. I think short term it's too much for kids to cope with, parents sperating and home too.
    Have discussed and said I am happy to rent and contribute to mortgage as long as affordable for me and as long as she has no partner there bringing in another income, and yes, living in the beautiful home I built. If that happens then we will need to review, but I would imagine she wouldn't want to start a new relationship in our home.
    Otherwise, as long as I can afford, happy to wait 11 years to access equity, or earlier if things change significantly.
  • Yes but you need to think longer term too.

    If there is nothing in place to say what happens then what when things have changed, for both of you, in the future? She may not want a new partner there now but what about in 5, 6 or even 10 years time? And why would she then want to change things? How will you split the equity in 11 years time? Will she have to sell to pay you off? What about capital gains tax for you?
  • Thanks, I guess that's what I'm asking, what should I get nailed down in case. Could things not be dealt with as and when, or what needs sorting now?
  • You need a consent order stating what percentage of the equity you will get and what the trigger points are. Usual ones are youngest reaches 18, six months co hab or remarriage.
  • Guest101
    Guest101 Posts: 15,764 Forumite
    OP it's not your home anymore.

    If your ex does have a relationship- it will be in that property.

    The £250 may be payable regardless of her having another income. I don't know your wage but would be happy to work out the CMS equivalent payments you might need to make.

    are u joint tenants? Or tenants in common?
  • pphillips
    pphillips Posts: 1,631 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Personally, I would get a separation agreement down in writing specifying what you have agreed financially as well as concerning the the children.
  • Guest101 wrote: »
    OP it's not your home anymore.

    If your ex does have a relationship- it will be in that property.

    The £250 may be payable regardless of her having another income. I don't know your wage but would be happy to work out the CMS equivalent payments you might need to make.

    are u joint tenants? Or tenants in common?

    If I'm paying the mortgage and have joint ownership, it's not really that simple, is it?
    I have drafted a seperation agreement that I hope she will agree to, it's fair and puts kids first as far as I can tell, and I take a hit, she doesn't, so don't think I have been inequitable. If she agrees I imagine it can be formalised by a solicitor?
  • WYSPECIAL
    WYSPECIAL Posts: 643 Forumite
    First Post Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Remember though that a separation agreement isn't legally binding and can't be enforced by a court.
  • Guest101
    Guest101 Posts: 15,764 Forumite
    If I'm paying the mortgage and have joint ownership, it's not really that simple, is it?
    I have drafted a seperation agreement that I hope she will agree to, it's fair and puts kids first as far as I can tell, and I take a hit, she doesn't, so don't think I have been inequitable. If she agrees I imagine it can be formalised by a solicitor?

    Actually it is.

    Its your property. You still have rights to it. But it's not your home.

    Depends what it says. Consent orders can be more one sided than most things, but it's got limits too.

    If you say something about her having a relationship in the document, i suggest you remove that.

    Post it and you can get some feedback
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