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Married, contributing minor stake in family home but not named on deeds

(14 Posts)
EmmaCate Thu 30-Jun-11 04:21:16

Firstly, DH and I have no issues other than everyday niggles most people have and no expectation of any imminent relationship meltdown.

I am just raising this to be sensible as I know things don't always work out.

In short, DH originally said I'd be named on deeds to family home bought in wedlock (all previous dwellings were his before marriage) but has backtracked. Reason being I may reduce amount we can borrow so he's reluctant to name me on mortgage (having babies; also only 4days/wk for 8 months I will have worked in between mat leave) and thinks having disconnect between that and names on deeds may cause problems.

Some of my savings are going into the house, although in past DH has given me money to max tax free investments, so even those are partly down to him.

So basically; should I be worried for my security in case of anything breaking down relationship-wise? He's kind and loving, but burned from failed marriage in early 20s. His family are too but very much blood-tied; they'd be entirely blinkered and pro-progeny if things went wrong between us. DH more philosophical about his contribution to first wife's actions than MIL is and by all accounts he was shat on severely!

Thanks for any advice.

Buda Thu 30-Jun-11 04:35:01

Well in our case we bought our first house together having lived in. Flat that DH bought before we met. Deliberately didn't take my income into account when getting mortgage as I wanted to be able to stay home if we had a baby. My name still went on deeds. I have not worked now for 16 years but my name goes on everything. Even investments that DH is making that I don't know about.

Your DH may be protecting himself but I would not be happy in your situation. You need to go to a solicitor together to talk it all through.

shelscrape Thu 30-Jun-11 04:46:14

EmmaCate ... i am presuming you are in England and Wales? if so, he is talking rubbish.

If the house is only in his name, you will have an equitable interest in the house if you have contributed to it in some way, not a legal interest. So, house only in his name, he gets run over by a bus, what happens to the house then? I think this is how you need to sell the need for the house to be in joint names to him. if he owns the house outright, all his propoerty will pass as per his will, which ultimately may mean you do not get the house outright. He may leve it to the Dogs home, he may leave it in trust to children with a life interest for you. But whatever he does, the value of the house will be taken into account for whether any inheritance tax has to be paid on his estate.

If the house is owned in joint names, specifically as joint tenants, if he dies his share in the property automatically passes to you and will not be subject to totting up for inheritance tax. would make the future of any children you have more secure in the family home and of course less tax to the government (afterall who wants to pay more taxes?)

He is talking rot about mortgage companies, my experience is they are only too happy to have a non earning partner/spouse on the deeds as they then have two people to go after if there is a default.

Yes, be worried about your security. Whilst if there was a breakdown in the marriage, you coud make a claim in regard to your equitable interest in the house, it is a pain, costly and can be difficult for the courts to decide on exactly what your equitable share is.

OK, he's had his fingers burnt by a previous marriage, but i would be cautious about buying a house with him if this is his attitude prior to marriage. I think you will have better luck presuading him he is being an idiot if you approach it from the death and inheritance tax view point. Good luck

EmmaCate Thu 30-Jun-11 05:28:16

Thanks very much both; yes in England. Will talk to him again in case misunderstood but there's no IHT on estates passing to wife is there? Only when both die did I think children have IHT to pay. Will states all his assets pass to me and vice versa; I saw/reviewed that when it was written.

Shelscrape - we are married. The previous marriage thing isn't a problem that he's brought up; just mentioned in case it's inflencing behind the scenes.

SirSugar Thu 30-Jun-11 06:45:28

If he dies and there is no will you would only get first 250k, the rest would be held in trust for the children, can make things very complicated if you aren't on deeds as it is assumed its all his. Get your name on the deeds

shelscrape Thu 30-Jun-11 08:09:35

Sorry, didn't make myself clear on the IHT side - cooking supper and sorting DS and his homework at the same time as typing! What I meant was, if it was not left to you in the will eg. left to children, dogs home etc. what would you do. He may have left it to you in his will at the moment, but if things do go wrong with your marriage he may change his will without you knowing. then where would you be? Marriage is supposed to be about equality between each other surely? I would not be happy in your situation.

iskra Thu 30-Jun-11 08:59:01

Think the mortgage thing is a red herring. Our mortgage is three person - dp, me and my dad, because dp and I weren't earning anything. Mortgage company didn't care as long as my dad was earning enough!

Smum99 Thu 30-Jun-11 10:09:41

Absolutely a smoke screen on deeds and mortgage. My earning don't contribute to the mortgage but I'm on the mortgage and deeds. Only reason to not put you on the mortgage would be if you had adverse credit and the joint application would be impacted by that.

This is not a usual situation - the issue of being joint tenants is relevant, get yourself some advice from a solicitor please (do it today!) as in the event of something happening to him it's not as straight forward as you then owning the house. The concern I would have is that if he changed his Will at some stage (to name his mum as beneficiary) you would not necessarily know.

ShoutyHamster Thu 30-Jun-11 14:24:04

Yes the financial stuff is nonsense. Bank will be perfectly happy with non-earning partner on the deeds: it's a common scenario. Financially, your not being on there causes more problems in the event of his death than anything else.

But that's not the point. Why is he getting the final say in this? You are married and therefore an equal partnership. You ARE contributing - you are both earning AND childbirthing/raising. In fact, you are 'contributing' and 'rsking' quite a lot more than him at the moment by cutting your individual earning power and probably sacrificing career and pension opportunities for the overall good of the family. Hmm. I'd be pretty unimpressed by both this suggestion and the fact he thinks it's ok for him to make it in the first place.

It's either your family home, or it's not. He's either committed to that, or he's not. If it were me, I wouldn't be putting a penny of my savings into something not in my name. And sparks would fly.

mummytime Thu 30-Jun-11 14:29:56

When we bought our "first home", DH had already owned a property. When he could finally sold it and we could buy our own place, there was never any question but that I was on the mortgage and the deeds. Having a second person never reduces the amount you can borrow, it can increase it.
BTW for the first few years of our married life I was a student, and for most of the rest I have been a SAHM; but we didn't even discuss the mortgage deed thing, we were married, it happened.

mummytime Thu 30-Jun-11 14:31:44

Oh BTW if he thinks this means if you divorce him you won't have some kind of claim on all his property then he is mistaken.

prh47bridge Thu 30-Jun-11 14:46:36

Having had experience of this in the last 2 weeks, I'm going to disagree with everyone else and say that the financial stuff may not be nonsense.

Many people (including myself) have mortgages that they took out when banks were happier to lend. If I were borrowing now my bank wouldn't lend me as much as my current mortgage. I saw them recently about putting my wife's name on the deeds and was told that this would involve changing the mortgage into joint names and reducing the outstanding balance to the amount they would lend us under current rules. You and I may think that's stupid but that is what my bank is saying.

Should you divorce the house will be part of the assets to be considered in arriving at the financial settlement. It makes absolutely no difference whether or not your name is on the deeds.

You are correct that you will not have to pay inheritance tax on anything he leaves you should he die. If you are still married when you die you will have a claim on the estate even if the relationship has broken down and he has written you out of his will. Basically you will be entitled to at least as much as you would have got if you had got divorced.

Personally I think that getting wills drawn up is more important than getting your name on the deeds. But, having said that, I am not comfortable that my wife's name is not on our deeds and intend to get that changed as soon as we can afford it.

lookbutdonttouch Thu 30-Jun-11 15:19:36

The above is all correct and sadly it is highly likely that if you were to transfer the property into joint names it would probably involve a remortgage on whatever terms the bank decreed.

Have the conversation and say you want it sorting , your part time working etc shouldn't be a major issue, but be aware that it really isn't as easy as just adding a name when there is a mortgage involved.

Sort the wills ASAP.

If you divorced the house is part of the matrimonial estate anyway.

EmmaCate Wed 31-Aug-11 15:19:13

Ages late on reply and thanks for all of them - just to say I did raise it again and he was fine to change it so now in both our names. He was just getting stressy about timing as the chain was under pressure to exchange - and justifiably to be fair as the application had to go in again from scratch and delayed things for another week - but he put up no objection at all when he saw what it meant to me.

We had a will already that was very boring and fully protected me, DH and the children.

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