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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 08-18-2012, 05:53 PM
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Question Common-law and house title issue.. Soon to be married? Matrimonial home??

Hi everyone, just joined this site and posting this in hopes of finding some answers.. Ur feedback will be greatly appreciated..!!

So starting with a little background.. I reside in Ontario, I've moved into my bf's condo (which he purchased with his name on title and mortgage only) and lived together for close to 3 yrs now. We are planning to get married next year and he recently bought a house by selling this condo and putting downpayment. He suggested to put my name on the mortgage and title of the house as well (I am a first time home buyer and I guess he figured including me in will get some tax break?) but I had to refuse because I was also planning to buy a property with my mom in the near future and the banker told me it would be difficult for me to get a second mortgage later on, as well as my bf would have to qualify for refinancing.

So as it is now, he will be the only one who goes on the title and mortgage of the new house. I am a bit wary of this because even though he is the one who put down the downpayment for the house, I will also be pitching in for the household bills. In case we dont make it to the alter later, I dont want my money to be paying off HIS mortgage and building up HIS equity and paying off the rest of HIS household bills (hydro, tax, cable, internet, food, etc). It would be a different story if we were already married since it will be considered a matrimonial home, but as it is now, we are common-law and we are "planning" to get married soon with no specific date yet. I know some of you reading this might be saying the bills I pay can be considered paying rent to him, but I dont want to be pitching in so much and putting in alot of effort for the upkeep of a place that I cannot even own.

So I am wondering..

1) Is it possible to add my name to just the title of the house and not the mortgage? My bf is telling me my name has to be on the mortgage in order to be on the title as well, but when I called my local land registry office, they told me it is possible to just add my name on the title (I will have to arrange with a real estate lawyer). Can anyone clarify please?

2) If it is possible to add my name to the title, will I be able to retrieve the amount of money I paid towards the house or is it ruled out to split the house equity 50/50 btwn us in case of separation? If my bf refuses to add my name to the title, what can I do to protect my interest? I am trying to do this without involving the lawyer and getting into nasty fights, I think i will end up broke hiring a lawyer and not even have a place to live in..

3) In the case we do get married and the house becomes our matrimonial home, I have read on different law forums that the whole value of the house will be split 50/50 regardless of whose name is on the title, who paid the downpayment, who paid for what bill, etc.. What about short term marriages of less than 5 years? I can't find specific info regarding this..

4) If we do get married and during our course of marriage I buy a property with my mom, does he have any right to fight for a share of the equity as a spouse in the event we separate? How do I protect the interest of this property strictly just for my mom and myself?

Please refrain from giving unuseful comments such as "just dont get married if you are already worrried about all of this" and such.. I am just trying to look out for myself and hopefully, save myself from getting into unfortunate and possibly expensive battle down the road in case things dont work out with my bf.. I do wish that things work out favorably and we can compromise, but life is full of unknown surprises.. Anyway thank you all.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:00 PM
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so you are not putting anything down on the house, want him to use his equity only to buy the house, you want to be on the title but doent want to be on the mortgage?? Plus you want to make sure that you get 50% of the property if you divorce? Then you want to buy a property with your mother (are you putting money down?) but want to make sure he cant get a share of it in case of divorce??

How about this, instead of buying a property with your mother, invest in your own home with your future husband.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:05 PM
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Oh, I forgot one more question.. Does adding my name to the title mean that I will be responsible for any liens, unpaid bills, or foreclosure regarding the house or does this strictly follow the person who signed the mortgage? What other responsibilities are associated with being on the title of the house?
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:11 PM
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Like I said, in order to help my mom buy a property in the near future, she most likely needs me as her co-borrower, which means I can't be on the current mortgage with my bf.
I did not say I expect to get half of the house in case we separate, I am just asking how the rules are regarding having two people on the title of the house and will it be automatically assumed the value will be split 50/50
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:15 PM
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Are you kidding me?Paying off his hydro?His cable ,his bills....what the hell do you think you would be doing if you were living on your own???Chances are even if you were paying into his morgage it would be cheaper than paying rent.Poor guy
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:15 PM
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When you marry, the home you reside in becomes the Marital Home. In the event you divorce, the marital home is split 50/50, there are practically no exceptions to this (if you divorce a month later like Britney Spears, you could make a good argument.)

What you are expecting, then, is that you live for free in this home (you don't want to pay for utilities or mortgage) and then if you divorce you would get half?

I would point out that if you lived alone, and invested with your mum, you would be paying rent. With your boyfriend/husband, you will be living rent free, he will be paying for all your housing costs, and you will be putting your extra disposable income into the property with your mother.

If I were your boyfriend, I would not marry you under these circumstances, not just because it is financially silly, but also because you seem to just be out for yourself.

Please don't get upset, I say "seem". You are obviously thinking this through and trying to be fair and ethical.

The fair and ethical thing to do is to pay for half the utilities, mortgage, insurance, and maintainence costs on the house, because you live there equally with your fiance, and you will benefit equally from the investment. It would also be fair and ethical for you to "catch up" on the down payment which he is providing, so that you both enter into the marriage on an equal basis. Since you have money that you could invest with your mother, this shouldn't be a problem.

If you still have disposable income left over, you could certainly invest this with your mother, and you could certainly write up a prenuptual agreement that would protect this investment in the event that you and your fiance split up at some point. Doubtless he has other savings and investments he would like to protect. This would be perfectly fair and ethical.

The end result would be that your investments outside the marriage would be protected, the marital home which is by law a joint ownership, would be equally financed by the two of you. All in all, a completely fair and equitable arrangement.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:15 PM
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And please refrain from making personal attacks or comments, I do not want to write a life story here regarding why I want to help my mom buy a property, why I am worried about all this separation and house issues, etc.. I am just concerned about the facts and answers. Thanks.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:19 PM
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No one is attacking you. What you are asking for is an extremely one-sided situation, where you are protected, your fiance is completely financing the matrimonial home, and you are investing your money elsewhere.

This is very difficult to support in family law. Please don't be surprised that we see it as being very one-sided.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettypoop View Post
Like I said, in order to help my mom buy a property in the near future, she most likely needs me as her co-borrower, which means I can't be on the current mortgage with my bf.
I did not say I expect to get half of the house in case we separate, I am just asking how the rules are regarding having two people on the title of the house and will it be automatically assumed the value will be split 50/50
How about you each get legal advice and draw up a paper protecting your bfs investment and your investment? You agree not to go after the house and he agrees not to go after any property that you buy with your mother???

You still have to give your bf money for utiities, etc.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:19 PM
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I have clearly mentioned that I WILL be pitching in for the household bills as well, I am not expecting to live in that house for free, so I am investing on my part as well.
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