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For information about how to deal with where you lived with your partner, see Living arrangements – unmarried couples.

The starting point for other property - for example a holiday home or property that is rented out - is that, if it was bought in one of your sole names, that person owns it and the other person has no entitlement to it. This is the case unless the other partner can show that they contributed towards the property, for example by providing some or all of the deposit or by contributing towards the mortgage.

If the property was bought in joint names, you and your partner will be entitled to the share in the home that is set out in the legal documents about the property. However, if one of you can show that they contributed more towards the property than the legal documents suggest, it may be that you own more of the property than the legal paperwork says you do. This might be the case if, for example, the property was bought in joint names on the basis that you each own 50 per cent, but one of you contributed more towards the purchase price or made more of the mortgage repayments. This is a complex area of law and you are strongly advised to get advice from a solicitor – see Useful Links.

For more information see The steps involved – unmarried couples – the settlement.

Living arrangements
Living arrangements

Find information on dealing with the family home and working out your options.

Find out more about living arrangements

Read how others coped:
'We owned the house jointly but, I was so messed up at the time, I just left it to my partner.
He got one valuation. It was pretty low for a quick sale - and it did sell within weeks. But we should have got more. We paid off the mortgage out of the proceeds and our credit card debts and the fees, then split what was left 50-50. We were lucky - at that time there was some equity in housing, so we each had a bit to use for a new start. But looking back, I should have got involved. We should have got several valuations. But, when you are in the middle of it, it is very hard think rationally. You just want it all over and done with as quickly as possible.'

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