living and contributing to partner's house

Hi all

I have been living with my partner for 3 years, in a house entirely in his name. When he purchased it, I put £15k into some refurb and large purchases eg new kitchen and bathroom.   I own another property (with a mortgage) that i used to live in, which i now rent out to my daughter.
I pay a proportion of my partner's mortgage and household bills. Not quite half as I have some objections to some of his outgoings, but approaching half.
We don't have a formal agreement or contract in place, although he does have a will which states I can live in the house upon his death as long as I want, and the house will pass to his son when i either move out or die.
I don't  have any concerns about our relationship or his behaviour even if the relationship should break down, but I feel we may both be being a bit naieve about it.
As im still paying my mortgage on the other house, and also some of his mortgage via my contribution - is there anything I should be doing to protect myself in case of him losing capacity ie having a car accident? 
Am i doing myself down long term by spending my money on a house which will never be mine? (we couldn't afford for me to be on the mortgage too).
Any ideas? thanks in advance


  • Emmia
    Emmia Forumite Posts: 2,262
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    edited 23 July at 12:10AM
    Just to confirm, you're not married / civil partnered? Do you have any sort of charge over the house or a binding legal agreement (not the will) drawn up when you put money in for the refurb?

    Currently, by paying into the mortgage you're taking equity in the property, but you have no formal agreement to recognise this - so in the event you split, you'd potentially need to go to court to get the money back. 

    Wills can also be altered, so if you're partner died, you could find that your "life interest" is nothing of the sort... and you'd be out on your ear.

    Personally I would from this point onwards, only pay for the bills, and would not make any contribution that could be thought of as going towards the mortgage. I'd also tot up the amount you've put in so far, and look to see if your partner can repay this (I presume they don't want you to own part of the property).

    Put the money you're no longer paying in, into a separate account - perhaps you'd like to buy a different place together in the future, those savings could be used for that...
  • Spendless
    Spendless Forumite Posts: 23,599
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    By contributing to a mortgage and paying for refurbishments you should be gaining some equity in the house. With your status as live in girl/boyfriend (rather than official spouse/civil partner) you won't necessarily  do so. Each case is judged on it's own merit in  the event of a split, you would have to take the case to court, you would have to produce evidence that you had paid for these things and you'd have to let a judge decide. The money you're spending on  paying towards someone else's mortgage could be going into overpayments on the property in your name.

    You and your boyf need a conversation about this, what you do in the future and what you do about previous payments made. 

    Re - if he lost capacity you can look at getting LPAs

  • silvercar
    silvercar Forumite, Ambassador Posts: 45,911
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Academoney Grad Name Dropper
    “  I own another property (with a mortgage) that i used to live in, which i now rent out to my daughter.”

    So effectively you have a back up if things go wrong, in that you have another home you can live in. Also, it’s not costing you much to keep this house going as you have the rental income. 

    As an aside, does the lender know you don’t live in the property? Is the lender happy that you are renting it to a relative?
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  • TBagpuss
    TBagpuss Forumite Posts: 11,169
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    OK, you put money into your partners house and are helping him to pay the mortgage, but you have no legal interest in it, so no automatic right to anything if it was sold or if the two of you split up.

    If you couldn't afford to change it to joint names the other option would be to have a declaration of Trust drawn up and registered to say what your interest in the house is. It would mean that he was still the legal owner, but that you had a specific beneficial interest which you would be entitled to if he dies, or if the house were sold, of f the two of you were to separate.

    IF, when you discuss this with him, this is not something he is willing to do, then you probably should have a separate conversation about him repaying you for the money you paid for the refurbishments, and reducing what you pay moving forward so you are not contributing to his mortgage. Use the money you save to put into overpaying your own mortgage, or investing elsewhere 

    Getting Powers of Attorney drawn up would be sensible to cover the situation if one of you lost capacity. As you both have adult children, you may want to consider whether you would want to appoint your partner and daughters as joint attorneys and he may want to do the same with you and one of his sons. Quite apart from anything else, if you are of similar ages, having at least one attorney who is younger can be sensible! 
    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
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