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Boyfriend charging me rent at a property he owns

(256 Posts)
blueamanda Sun 20-Mar-16 19:14:00

Hello everyone!

I'm in a bit of a dilemma... My bf has recently bought a flat, 95% of the money came from his parents, he doesn't have a mortgage and he took out a loan to cover the rest. The idea was that we'd move in together, but we haven't exactly discussed the details until now.

I was more then happy to share the bills and food costs with him from the get go, however he now wants to charge me rent as well, which would be half of my current rent. He calls this a non-specific contribution to the flat, this is not going to be a landlord tenant agreement. All this would be outlined in a living together agreement and he also wants me to sign a waiver saying I will have no claim on the property.

This ordeal has left a bitter taste for me, since I'd be contributing financially to the flat that isn't mine and I don't have the same protection a tenant does. I'm in a far more vulnerable position.

I would love to hear some advice and perspectives from anyone in a similar situation.

Also does anyone know if my bf is charging me rent is he legally obligated to pay tax on it? Would I be better off pushing for a landlord tenant agreement? I won't be renting a room from him, but sharing the bedroom.

Many thanks!

chantico Sun 20-Mar-16 19:20:10

If your living costs are going to be lower than they would be separately, and you save rather than blow the difference, then this could be a good arrangement for you.

Because either you split up, and you have your savings to fall back on. Or you don't, and they can be used for a joint family home.

It may seem unromantic, but being crystal clear about money/property issues is a good trait.

Drquin Sun 20-Mar-16 19:24:05

It sounds a bit neither one way nor the other.
It's neither "proper" rent, if he won't enter a landlord / tenant lease agreement.

But it's not two people in a relationship pooling money to rent / buy a property together.

I can kind of understand if this is a really new relationship and he's worried that you're about to shaft him for half the value of his property by running off two days after you've moved in ...... But he's not really going about it the right way, is he?

Yes, he'd be liable for tax on money earned on rental income (assuming all else is equal in terms of his income / tax affairs).

Teaandcakeat8 Sun 20-Mar-16 19:31:01

I did this with my now ex dp... He owned the property (although it was mortgaged) and I paid him £200 per month as a contribution to all bills.

I saved around £400 in rent, put this into an ISA and when we split at Christmas I had enough to buy my own flat.

I would do it if its saving you money which you can put into savings. What protection do you need as a tenant? If you split, you won't want to live there anyway. I was able to find temporary accommodation in a few days when we broke up.

Teaandcakeat8 Sun 20-Mar-16 19:32:30

Also it's a good, risk-free test to see if you are compatible living together in my opinion. Yes it was annoying having to find somewhere to live but nowhere near as messy as if we had bought or signed a rental agreement together. If you trust your partner and he is generally not an arse I would do it.

expatinscotland Sun 20-Mar-16 19:34:05

I'd do it and save the difference.

MrsSteptoe Sun 20-Mar-16 19:34:41

Drquin would it not fall into the £7500 p.a. tax-free earnings for renting out a room to a lodger? Not sure how that stacks up in terms of sharing his bed, though.

This does sound unromantic. On the other hand, it may be very practical. From your point of view, if it's a cheaper arrangement than living on your own and assuming that you're OK with not having own flat, then why not save the difference? But if you prefer to be living somewhere where you have tenants' rights, then of course you should continue to rent separately. Do you feel that paying rent to him should ensure you an investment stake in the flat, otherwise it's not fair?

fakenamefornow Sun 20-Mar-16 19:39:58

He won't have to pay tax (assuming the rent isn't very high) under the rent a room scheme.

Also a lodger doesn't have the same rights as an assured shorthold tenant anyway.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Sun 20-Mar-16 19:42:09

I think it's fair enough tbh.

From his perspective - why should you live rent/mortgage free?

I'd save the rent you are saving on, in case things go wrong.

blueamanda Sun 20-Mar-16 19:47:20

I'm wasn't particularly interested in gaining stake in his property, but i think that him charging me rent feels also wrong. The idea is that we would eventually be buying together in 3 years time, but who knows what will happen until then.

His initial suggestion was that I put what I pay for rent now into a savings account and that would be put towards our future property and if we break up he gets half of the money. I felt like that was almost the same arrangement, except he's charging the rent retrospectively.

I know this is very unromantic and something that has to be done...

Viviennemary Sun 20-Mar-16 19:49:18

I don't think you can expect to live rent free. But on the other hand you wouldn't want to be in this arrangement for the long term and be without any property of your own and the property that is your home belongs to somebody else. I think I'd go along with it for a year or so and put aside the money you are saving on rent with a view to buying a house of your own. Depends on whether you both view the relationship as long term or short term.

MrsSteptoe Sun 20-Mar-16 19:51:09

I'm tempted to say go for it on the grounds that if you don't break up you've got a decent chunk of change for buying somewhere together in three years' time, and if you do break up and have to give him half the money, you're still ahead of the game by comparison with renting on your own where there is no cashback!

But I am notorious for not spotting why things aren't a good idea, so I shall be watching what other people say... I can totally see it's a delicate situation, OP!

JeffersonCrisp Sun 20-Mar-16 19:55:01

His initial suggestion was that I put what I pay for rent now into a savings account and that would be put towards our future property and if we break up he gets half of the money

So, if you split up, he gets all the flat and half your savings?


HappyGoLuckyGirl Sun 20-Mar-16 19:56:27

Erm, your last post is a tad concerning. He wants you to save your 'rent' but in the event you break up wants half of the amount you've saved?


blueamanda Sun 20-Mar-16 19:57:36

Exactly, that's how I felt

expatinscotland Sun 20-Mar-16 20:01:28

'His initial suggestion was that I put what I pay for rent now into a savings account and that would be put towards our future property and if we break up he gets half of the money.'

For real? I'd have laughed in his face. FUCK that!

Looking at it now, I wouldn't move in with him.

blueamanda Sun 20-Mar-16 20:01:32

Yes. Say by rent is now 400. In first scenario I would be paying him 200 directly and saving 200.

In second scenario 400 would be going into savings account every month and if we break up he gets half of that, so same charge as in the first scenario apart from the fact that he only gets it if we break up and if not it goes towards our future property.

MrsSteptoe Sun 20-Mar-16 20:03:19

So, if you split up, he gets all the flat and half your savings?
It's his flat. There's no reason why OP should get any of his flat.

What he does seem to be saying is that he only wants to let you live there rent-free if you stay together in the long term, but because you have no crystal ball, he wants to have a way of ensuring that he didn't support an ex-girlfriend rent free. The claiming half of her savings would be a retrospective way of charging her rent for the period of her living with him. It's not particularly generous, but on the other hand, you would be extremely fortunate indeed if you were able to live rent-free.

I'm really not quite sure what I think here.

NoOneIsInterested Sun 20-Mar-16 20:03:41

I don't quite understand the bit about splitting the savings but I think it's right that you should pay rent. You will be saving money on rent. Would you really have felt comfortable pocketing all the money you will be saving for yourself confused

This is probably a reminder that it's good to talk about money with partners.

Lilylo Sun 20-Mar-16 20:04:27

DP and I are in a somewhat similar situation.

We live in a flat that was bought by his parents. Both DP and MIL's names are on the deeds currently as co owners.

However DP and I pay rent (although at a very favorable rate) to his parents, since technically they bought the house.

DP feels it is fair to pay some rent and I agree with him.

The agreement with his parents is that by the time we will get married and have kids we will stop paying rent and eventually DP and I (assuming we got married in the meantime!) will inherit that property.

I am happy with his arrangement because at the end of the day everyone benefits from it:

- DP and I get to live in a nice large flat we could not afford to buy/ rent privately
- in the meantime we save money that we could one day invest in something else
- his parents are happy they provided a house to their son and his DP

If we broke up, I would have a good amount of savings thanks to the low rent and I would just lool for another accomodation (as I would do in any case if we broke up!)

MrsSteptoe Sun 20-Mar-16 20:07:45

Would you really have felt comfortable pocketing all the money you will be saving for yourself
^ this.

If you aren't happy with the idea that he retrospectively claims half of the rent you haven't paid (IYSWIM) in the event of a breakup, then I think your only option is to pay the rent monthly to him. Since it's exactly the same either way, perhaps that's what you need to get your head round.

I can see that a break-up is shit enough already, without having to start handing over money, so perhaps monthly rent is a better idea.

And get him to put it into a bank account so that it's still there if you stay together and can put it towards a place in three years' time?

Trills Sun 20-Mar-16 20:08:05

it's a good, risk-free test to see if you are compatible living together

I agree with Teaandcakeat8

I don't know why you would expect to live there entirely free.

PurpleDaisies Sun 20-Mar-16 20:09:11

I think paying him rent is fine. Do you really expect him to support you financially? I don't really get the need for the savings account plan thing. As long as it's a fair amount I'd just pay the rent (with a proper tennant agreement in place).

ThroughThickAndThin01 Sun 20-Mar-16 20:10:26

But that's the same scenario then?

A) you pay £200 rent to him and save £200 for yourself x however any months

B) you pay £400 into savings account you split down the middle if you separate therefore £200 to him £200 for yourself x however many months

That's fair enough.

blueamanda Sun 20-Mar-16 20:11:52

I'm not saying I would like to live there rent free, but basing this amount on my current rent is also a bit dodgy. If say he wanted me to pay half of his service charge, I would consider that more reasonable, as it's an amount that reflects actual costs of the flat.

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