What Can I Do If My Ex Won’t Sign To Sell House?

Estimated reading time 4 minutes

A separation, no matter how amicable, will always throw up some uncomfortable moments. Arranging on what is to be done with a shared property can be a sticking point for many divorcing or separating couples, both wanting some benefit from the ending of the relationship – albeit bricks and mortar.

Your ex may not wish to sign to sell the house, despite it potentially being the best answer for everyone. The thought of the long-drawn-out process of contracts, valuations, and viewings all possibly being too much for them to work through.

Maybe, as a quick solution, cash house buyers could provide the best option for all involved. Whatever route you try and take, consider what has the best result for you all, especially when children are involved.

Can I make my ex sell the house?

The simple answer here is no. When you bought the house, it was no doubt, purchased via a mortgage with both of your names on it. As a result, you each have an equal ownership. If you are married nothing can really progress until the divorce is finalized unless a solution is reached. If though, you are not married, things can be a little simpler. If the house is just in your name, you may be able to list it for sale and move on without any problems. If you have only been together a short while there should not be any serious hurdles either. As with anything of this nature, it is always best to gain legal advice first.

One thing to be aware of is that even if only one of you is on the title deed, a marriage means that your spouse is legally allowed to continue living in the property. Their rights will still apply even if the house is sold to a third party. The non-owner would also have to give consent to the owner for their removal from the property. If the refusal of consent is seen to be unreasonable, a judge is likely to rule in the owner’s favour.

My divorce isn’t finalised yet, can I still sell the house?

Often, nothing can be agreed until the divorce is finalised. This can lead to that awkward situation where you both have the right to occupy the house. As mentioned above, this is where legal advice is the best action.

If a sale is being forced though, perhaps, because one party owns the property, a notice of home rights can be obtained. This basically allows the person with no ownership rights to put a notice on the property deeds stating they have rights to the property.

A sale would not be able to go through until a notice of home rights is removed. Hence the need for legal advice.

How can the ex and I sell the house?

There are a few avenues you can pursue that will hopefully make things as stress free as possible. Below are the most common and hopefully the easiest for you to implement.

Buy them out

Whilst things may be strained, giving yourselves the option to talk things through, may provide the best answer. If you are in a position to buy them out, you could offer them a cash sum for their share. This would allow them to move on, secure a new mortgage, and start afresh. This sometimes puts you in an advantageous position as they can either accept the money or face the long-drawn-out court process. Be aware though that gaining the funds to buy them out may put you into unmanageable debt. It would be advisable to speak to a solicitor to gain professional advice.  If you do proceed with the court avenue, you may be offered an order of sale.

What is an order of sale?

The order of sale is granted as a result of a court hearing where you both will have the option to present your case. The successful party will then be awarded the right to take possession. From here the house can be sold and the money divided in a way agreed between you and your ex in court.

Use a cash house buyer

Avoiding the needs for courts, the proposal of using cash house buyers could be made. Assuming you are both named on the property, you could sell the house much quicker than going through an estate agent. This is a stress-free option available with Gaffsy – there are no legal fees involved, no property chain, and no delays completion. We have helped numerous separating couples sell their homes hassle free, in a timeframe that has suited their needs, so don’t hesitate in getting a free cash offer today.

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