Partner wants to get married - what happens to my house

(141 Posts)
basil9456 Wed 27-May-20 11:22:06


I am 62, I worked for 40 years and then was fortunate to be able to retire early at 56 with a good lump sum pay out and pension. I paid off my mortgage a number of years ago and have lived in the same house for 30 years where I raised my family (3 children now adults).

I got divorced in my 30s and never had a serious relationship after that until now I’ve been with a woman for the past 5 years, same age as me. My partner has debts and lives in a house with shared equity which she is struggling to maintain.

She is keen to sell her house, move in with me and get married. I never saw myself as remarrying.

I also felt I would leave my house to my 3 children when I die. Can anyone advise if I were to marry her and she moved in with me, if I died first I presume my partner would inherit my house? And after she dies would it go to her children and completely cut my children out?


OP’s posts: |
Glenthebattleostrich Wed 27-May-20 11:23:58

You make sure you write a will giving her the right to live there after your death and upon her death the house passes to your children. A well written will is the way to go.

CodenameVillanelle Wed 27-May-20 11:24:21

You need legal advice.

AMostExcellentStick Wed 27-May-20 11:25:25

As above, get a professional will written up so that not only do you get to decide what happens, but it's clear to your partner and children if that happens.

Epigram Wed 27-May-20 11:26:33

You are right to be concerned. If you die first without a will your spouse would inherit the property and could then leave it to whoever she liked. You need a will to make sure your children are financially protected.

Nymeriastark1 Wed 27-May-20 11:26:41

Seek legal advice. They have been plenty of posts on here about 2nd 3rd husbands and wives etc, inheriting houses and money and leaving everything to their own children and nothing to the original home owners children. It does happen. Why does she want to get married so badly?

basil9456 Wed 27-May-20 11:26:49

But would the will be valid if we married as would she not just inherit the house as standard and then is free to do as she chooses with it?

OP’s posts: |


JacobReesMogadishu Wed 27-May-20 11:28:28

She is keen to sell her house, move in with me and get married. I never saw myself as remarrying.

I bet she is keen. Do you want to get married and her to move in?

But yes, if you do get married then definitely get a will written (after the marriage) leaving the house to the kids. I would never trust anyone who promises "to do the right thing" as I've seen this happen in real life to a friend and the step mum changed after the death of my friend's dad. Stopped talking to her, ripped a will up, hid money, etc. This woman had been her step mum for 30 years! Money does funny things to people.

JacobReesMogadishu Wed 27-May-20 11:30:13

This is why you have to do the will after the marriage - because if you do the will and then get married that makes the will invalid.

My dad died and left me and my brother his house even though he'd remarried and I had a step mother. It wasn't a house they lived in so it's not like we kicked her out, she had another house and it was all fine. But the will was very legal, the second house was ours. Not hers even though they were married.

Murraygoldberg Wed 27-May-20 11:30:40

When my dm married, the house was put in mine and my siblings name, she died several years ago, her husband still lives there and can until he dies, you need a solicitor

basil9456 Wed 27-May-20 11:32:16

Ok thank you for all your advice. Do you think I still need legal advice if she moves into my home permanently but we never get married?

OP’s posts: |
DelphiniumBlue Wed 27-May-20 11:34:56

Also remember that once you are married, she will have a claim on your assets in the event of divorce. You could do a pre-nup agreement, but you will need legal advice to ensure that it is legally enforcable. And she would also need separate legal advice before signing it, do not even consider disposing of that step. All this will cost, so you would need to factor that in.

Nymeriastark1 Wed 27-May-20 11:35:15

I'm not sure. But if you're not married done have children together and she doesn't contribute anything towards the value of the house then I doubt she would be entitled to anything legally. But still get professional advice.

Buttonnose45 Wed 27-May-20 11:35:31

DP and I live together and own our house. We have just drawn up our wills and we're advised to put in a clause for "Expectation of Marriage" that says that we expect to marry at some point but want the details of the Will to stand should we get married

basil9456 Wed 27-May-20 11:36:05

I find it confusing she could have a claim on my assets in the event of a divorce, but not in the event of death if there is a will.

OP’s posts: |
Eggybreadleg Wed 27-May-20 11:36:45

That's madness. Live together but with a written agreement about how you share bills etc. Don't marry. You'll cause a massive headache for your kids if you die first. She can challenge everything if you marry.

newtb Wed 27-May-20 11:37:10

It used to be the case, but may have changed, that you could make a will before marrying 'in contemplation of marriage'. In that case the will was not nullified on the following marriage.

Megan2018 Wed 27-May-20 11:37:18

Don’t do it. Why the need to marry?

Parky04 Wed 27-May-20 11:41:40

Live together by all means but why get married? Best way to protect your assets is to not get married!

CayrolBaaaskin Wed 27-May-20 11:47:34

You can still will your property to whoever you like if you’re married (assuming you’re in England). A spouse could challenge The will but these are unlikely to succeed generally. If you divorce tho she could claim your property in a settlement.

I wouldn’t bother getting married in your situation. You could cohabit quite happily instead. If she is keen to do otherwise it’s quite likely she has ulterior motives (ie wants to get her hands on your property).

FlamedToACrisp Wed 27-May-20 11:50:14

But you don't get married to sort out your financial assets! You get married because you love each other and want to proclaim to the world that you are committed to each other!

Yes, of course, see a solicitor and put documents in place to protect your children's future inheritance, but don't make your decision as to whether to marry or not all about money.

HollowTalk Wed 27-May-20 11:50:58

I wouldn't marry under those circumstances. No way. That house is yours and your children's. I'm sure you worked really hard for it, with them in mind.

If you do marry her, write your Will after you marry as otherwise marriage invalidates a Will. Bear in mind, though, if you died the next day and she lived for another 30 years, then your children wouldn't inherit your house until then. Is that what you want?

HollowTalk Wed 27-May-20 11:51:56

And yes, as a PP said, in a divorce your house is part of your assets and she would be entitled to a share. That could leave you having to move to a smaller place.

needsahouseboy Wed 27-May-20 11:53:45

Get a will written up. Plus she sounds like a ‘cocklodger’ and you are her meal ticket. I’d avoid at all costs marrying her tbh or letting her live with you until she has sorted herself out financially.

fuckinghellthisshit Wed 27-May-20 11:56:14

I bet she's keen!

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