Let’s be honest, the thought of splitting the costs of living between you and your partner can be quite appealing. Therefore, it makes sense to consider buying a house together before marriage, right? With so many signs telling you that you should be buying a house as an unmarried couple, there are things to consider before you take a leap!
Buying a house as an unmarried couple – who pays the mortgage?
A good credit score can play a big role in getting approved for a mortgage, especially if you’re buying a house together before marriage. If you or your partner have a low score, this could affect your chances of being accepted. Lenders will take a look at your individual scores from each reporting agency first to find the middle score. The lowest score between both applicants will be used to determine approval and mortgage interest rate.
So, if you have great credit but your partner does not. You could have your partner’s name on just the title and not the loan. However, this will come with additional risk as the debt of the property will fall to you.
How is the property titled?
In general, there are three title options for homebuyers to make themselves aware of, especially if they are unmarried. The first is sole ownership, where only one name is listed on the deed. As mentioned, the person whose name is on the deed will have all the rights and responsibilities of homeownership.
Secondly, there is joint tenancy, where each person will have an equal share of the property. If one tenant were to die, their share of the home will then transfer over to the other tenant. The right of survivorship will also prevent estates or relatives for the home if your partner passes.
Finally, you have tenants in common, which allows for unequal ownership. For example, you could own 60 per cent of your property and your partner will own 40 per cent.
Creating a backup plan
It may not be something you feel comfortable discussing, but it is important for you and your partner to determine what would happen should you split up or if one of you were to die. If the latter, it is important that you choose the right title for you and your partner.
However, ending the relationship comes with uncertainty. It would be wise to come to a partnership agreement or even a homebuying prenuptial to address issues such as:
- The person who is contributing financially
- How the mortgage is paid
- What will happen if you sell the property
- What will happen if the relationship dissolves
Coming to an agreement on these matters before you buy a property could save you time on both litigation and mediation, should you split up.
Prepare for all your property legalities with Betesh Middleton Law
No matter how you plan to buy your property, having the right solicitor will make the process much easier. Get in touch with Betesh Middleton Law to see how we can help.