Can my husband force me to sell our house? We are tenants in common.

17th May 2019

We are separated and will be divorcing in a few months. I live in our house with children aged 11 & 13. I would like to buy him out, but will not be able to offer him 50% of the equity in the house. If he is not happy with what I can offer, can he force me to sell the house?

CATEGORY: Family

LOCATION: ESSEX

2 answers
  • Ellis Hass Limited

    Hello and thank you for your question.

    Provided both your names are on the house, your husband would need a court order to be able to sell it -  and you would need to be made aware that the matter was going before the Court. This is not usually a quick process if he were to do this.

    We could certainly assist you with negotiations in respect of buying out your husband's share, so that this can then be made legally binding.

    Please feel free to contact me on 0121 746 3002 or by email to greg@ehsolicitors.co.uk and I would be happy to discuss how we can help further.

    Greg Bowyer

    Ellis Hass & Co Solicitors

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    Ellis Hass Limited

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  • OTS Solicitors

     

    Thank you for your enquiry..  Please note that we are unable to provide precise legal advice without knowing all the necessary information and can only give you some preliminary advice based solely on the information you have written in your question. 

     

    As you own the house as tenants in common, your husband cannot sell the house without your consent or a court order. Therefore, he would need to go through the court process of which you would need to be made aware.

     

    As you have mentioned that you will be divorcing soon, once you have initiated divorce proceedings you should obtain advice as to your matrimonial finances. You can attempt mediation to try and reach an agreement to buy your husband out for less than 50% of the equity. Mediation can also be used to agree any matters in relation to your children or any other assets if needed.

     

    If no agreement is reached, you may be able to apply to the court for a financial order. Please note that divorce proceedings would have to be initiated before an application for a financial order can be made. A financial order would deal with what should happen to the property and to any other matrimonial assets that you and your husband may have. In deciding what the financial order should be, the court would take into account a wide range of factors with the paramount consideration being given to the welfare of your two children. The factors are listed in s25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 if you wish to have a look at them.

     

    Depending on the relevant factors, the court has the power to order what is called a ‘Mesher Order’. This allows one party to occupy the family home with the children until a triggering event (e.g. the youngest child reaches a specified age, or the occupying party remarries) triggers sale of the house and the equity is split in accordance with the order. There are also other orders the court can make depending on your particular circumstances, and therefore, you should obtain detailed legal advice before proceeding with a financial application.

    Should you wish to discuss this further please do not hesitate to contact us on 02039599123 or via our website : OTSsolicitors.co.uk.                                     

     

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    OTS Solicitors

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