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Ex boyfriend refusing sale

  • Yorkshirelass682
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20 Nov 22 #520229 by Yorkshirelass682
Topic started by Yorkshirelass682
I fled a verbally abusive relationship and now live in rented. I have a 2 year old child to him and he is still living in our jointly owned property.

The house is up for sale however he has insisted to overprice the house and we haven’t had a single sniff of interest or a viewing in months. He is refusing to drop the price and refusing to do anything else. I put the deposit into the property but stupidly didn’t get anything drawn up legally so I know he will now be entitled to half which I am at peace with. However he is saying he won’t drop the price and also he wants to walk away with all of the equity in the house as he paid the mortgage over the last 2 years eventhough the mortgage comes out of my bank account and I also paid the bills, gas, electricity etc.

my questions are
1. If I force the sale of the house who would be liable for the costs, me or him?
2. How long would a force of sale take if the house is already up for sale?
3. He is in the property alone with no other occupants, would they force the sale?
4. Surely he wouldn’t legally be able to walk away with all of the equity if we are joint owners?

  • .Charles
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21 Nov 22 - 21 Nov 22 #520232 by .Charles
Reply from .Charles
1. If you apply to the Court and get the order you want, you would usually recover a proportion of your costs from your ex.

2. This is difficult. Whilst he might say he is cooperating, the fact that he wants all of the equity means there is a dispute. What you need to do is make an application to the court for a declaration as to your interests in the property and for an order for sale. The details of the sale (e.g. price) can be included in the order. If an application is necessary this can take a long time. 18 months to trial is not unusual. However, very few matters go to trial as it costs a lot of money and there are risks.

3. Yes.

4. No, see above.

Making an early offer is the key to the process. He currently thinks he has brow beat you into submission but the law is very much on your side. If you make an offer to settle, e.g. the property is sold and the proceeds split equally, he will hopefully seek legal advice and be told that he won't get any more from the court process and will risk having to pay your costs as well as his own.

There are other factors to take into consideration. Firstly he will say that paying the mortgage means he should get a greater share. The counter argument is that he has has sole occupation of the property which means he has had occupation of your half share. Your position is that he was paying your share of the mortgage in lieu of rent payable to you ('occupational rent'*).

To bolster your argument you paid the deposit. The property transfer will show it is held in equal shares but if he wants to raise the mortgage issue, you can raise the deposit issue. Either way, your position of settlement is 50:50.

*if the mortgage is a capital repayment mortgage your ex might be able to claim an extra amount for any reduction in capital he has made to the mortgage. If the mortgage is interest-only, this would not apply.

Last edit: 21 Nov 22 by .Charles.

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