Many couples choose to cohabit as an alternative to marriage, or to buy a house together before becoming legally wed. This is often a shrewd financial decision to avoid throwing money away on rent, but if you are unprepared for the complexities of home ownership, it could be a potential disaster.
Here at Irwin, Kilcullen & Co Solicitors, we focus on property law, and we would advise you to seek impartial legal advice before committing to any property purchase. Agreeing to purchase a property in joint names is a huge financial and legal commitment, and you should ensure that your interests will be protected, whatever the future holds.
5 Things You Need To Know When Buying A House With A Partner
1. Legal responsibility. When you take on a mortgage that is shared with another person, it’s vital that you understand the commitment you are making. This is an agreement on a long-term scale, and it will have implications for all other financial decisions you make, so you should always take legal advice to ensure you are acting in your best interests.
2. Be clear about finances. Buying a home together is a huge financial decision, and being open about your personal finances is a must. You should be prepared to discuss any previous credit issues, and be aware that your finances will become connected with those of your partner. This may influence credit searches for many years, even if you are no longer in a relationship together.
3. Decide what sort of ownership contract will work best. It is possible to register a purchase contract in many different ways, including one person holding the title as a sole owner or both holding title as joint tenants or tenants in common. The implications of this decision relate to the ownership of your share in the event of your death, and to the right of occupancy by the other owner, amongst other things.
4. Monitor expenditure. Buying a house together is not just a one-off investment, but will incur further expenses throughout the years. You should keep clear records of any work you have had done on the house, specifying who has paid for this, so that you can effectively split the proceeds of a sale in the future.
5. Know your rights. Seeking legal advice could prevent a problem with financial division of assets in the future, and it is a good idea to speak with your solicitor when your situation changes, whether the relationship ends or you decide to marry or have children. It’s important to understand your personal level of investment in the property, and how any changes might affect your right to live in it.
Find Property Solicitors in Cork
If you are purchasing a home, we will be happy to help you through every step of the process. Here at Irwin, Kilcullen & Co Solicitors, we focus on property law and we will ensure the best outcomes for you. Simply contact us online or call us today on +021 4270934 to see how we can help.