Can you divorce and still own property together? Guide to divorce and house ownership

Originally published on 31st January 2019 at 1:24 PM
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Divorce and house ownership can seem a little complicated, but it doesn’t need to be. There are a few reasons why, when you divorce joint property ownership may be the best option available. The three most common reasons are:

  • You have kids and want to keep the family home, but one person can’t take over the mortgage in their sole name. In this case, joint ownership of property after divorce is therefore necessary for the mortgage agreement to be upheld
  • You don’t want to sell the property yet and would rather keep the property/properties as an asset
  • You are earning rental income from the property/properties

Whatever your reason, after divorce joint property ownership is still possible. However, you need to be aware of the following things when it comes to divorce and house ownership.

1. If you own the property together as joint tenants, you will need to swap to tenants in common and confirm this with your mortgage provider

What’s the difference?

Joint tenancy:

Two or more people share equal ownership of the property. The property automatically goes to the other owner(s) if you die regardless of what you may have put in your will.

Tenants in common:

Two or more people have ownership interests in a property. Each owner has the right to leave his/her share of the property to any beneficiary upon their death. You do not need to hold the property in equal shares.

2. If you agree to continue to own property/properties with your ex, you should obtain a legally binding consent order

The consent order should set out who owns what percentage of the property, who is paying for what in terms of the mortgage and other outgoings, and the trigger events for the property to be sold.

Divorce and house ownership can be complicated, so it’s normal to worry about what happens to jointly owned property after divorce. However, if would like to understand your options, we recommend booking a free 15-minute call with our Divorce Specialists.

3. The tax implications when you stay in joint ownership of property after divorce

If you continue to own property/properties with your former spouse after you divorce, joint property ownership has tax implications for you both, particularly if you go on to purchase another property whilst you continue to co-own with your ex. It is advisable to seek specialist tax advice.

For more help, get in touch with one of our amicable experts by booking a free 15-minute call here.


How to buy your ex out of the house?

Start by discussing this with them. You will need to work out if you have the for this. If the property is subject to a joint mortgage, this will include finding out from your lender whether you are able to re-mortgage in your sole name and pay your ex their share of the equity. If you are divorcing or ending your civil partnership, you should consider legalising the financial arrangements you’ve made by getting a legally binding consent order.

What happens when you have joint ownership of property after divorce?

When you divorce, you will need to sort out three things legalise the divorce, agree your financial arrangements and child arrangements (if you have them). You will need to decide what you are going to do with any properties that you own (it doesn’t matter who’s name they are in).

Is my spouse entitled to my house if we divorce?

This will depend on multiple factors. A marriage ties you together financially and if you want to sever your financial ties, you will need a consent order, which a judge must approve. Normally a 50/50 split is the starting point of dividing your money and property, but there are many reasons why this might not suit your situation.

Can you divorce and still live in the same house UK?

Yes, it is possible for a couple to divorce and continue living in the same house. If you and your ex-partner. Read our guide to living together as you divorce.

Read More

Start your amicable divorce journey

Speak to an amicable Divorce Specialist to understand your options and next steps for untying the knot, amicably.

Book a free 15-minute consultation

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21.01.2020 8:36

I recently found out that my husband still owns the family home he had with his ex wife . He has Dede’s dating from the marriage to his ex wife which I have been helping to pay . Do I have any right to the property owned either through death or divorce to be able to clear his debts ?