Living Together – 5 Tips to protect your property rights

One in six couples in the UK live together without being married. If you are one of the 2.3 million couples cohabiting do you know what rights you have over the home you live in and have bought together?

Many couples mistakenly believe that a ‘common law spouse’ has rights in law, or that they will become entitled to rights the longer they are together. In fact, if cohabiting couples separate, each party has to prove that they have a valid claim on a portion of the value of their home

Vanessa Fox, Head of Family Law at hlw Keeble Hawson offers her five top tips to ensure your dream home won’t turn into a house of horrors if your relationship breaks down.

Enter into ‘a deed of trust’ on the purchase of a home. Also known as ‘a declaration of trust’, this protects you and reduces the risk when buying a property with someone else

If both of you have contributed towards buying the home, or if there are children involved, make sure that the house is in joint names

Enter into a cohabitation agreement. This is like a pre-nuptial agreement for unmarried couples.

Before moving into a property get sound legal advice from a family lawyer who will guide you through the right steps to take

Finally, why not consider marriage, which brings the full protection of the law?

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