Have you seen the TV
advert for a bank, which shows people squirming in embarrassment when trying to
talk to their family about money?
Of course it can be
difficult to broach the subject of finances, especially if you want to talk to
your partner about your home. You might
be worried about saying the wrong thing or about causing an argument and
jeopardising your happiness. But to keep
quiet and let things drift could mean that if the relationship finishes, you
could be left out of pocket and even homeless.
So be brave. Take control of your financial future and
talk about money. Your partner should
respect you for it.
If you are buying a
home together, talk about your joint plans.
Be clear what you are both contributing, who is going to pay the
mortgage and the other outgoings. Be
honest about what you want to happen and your financial fears for the future.
Talk to your
conveyancer about the different ways to own property together, about owing as
joint tenants or tenants in common and in what shares. If your situation is not straightforward, get
your solicitor to draft a Deed of Trust, setting out clearly who will own what,
whether you should have the right to buy your partner out in the future if you
split up and a clear exit timetable.
You may also benefit
from having a Cohabitation Agreement.
You can put whatever you like in this, it is essentially a contract
between you and it can help in ensuring that both of you are clear on your
financial agreement and the terms of your new life together.
If you are already
living with your partner, maybe your finances have become muddled and you are
not sure who owns what, you can still commission a Deed or an Agreement. This can be especially important if you are
about to put more money into your home, maybe to build an extension or to
overpay the mortgage.
It might mean an uncomfortable
conversation or two. But it is important
and could help avoid litigation further down the line.
Talk. And get advice on your rights. This is why I support the Resolution campaign