West Valley City, UT asked in Real Estate Law for Utah

Q: If I bought a house with someone who didn't actually financially contribute to the house in any way and only paid

2 mortgage payments be entitled to half the home if it is sold?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth Prigmore
Kenneth Prigmore
  • Spanish Fork, UT
  • Licensed in Utah

A: Step one is to communicate with this person regarding what they expect to receive in a sale of the home. Any value gained since the purchase, will be funds in question. (A court may find that the increase in value must be divided, you won't know until you receive a final judgment from the court.) Any amounts you have spent in excess of the other buyer will clearly show your greater investment, but it doesn't guarantee if you will receive more than a replacement of your investment plus half of the equity.

If you and the other buyer can agree on how much of the home you each own, an easy way for the two of you to correct this would be for both of you to sign a quit claim deed from yourselves to yourselves specifying what percentage each of you own of the home. I recommend having an attorney prepare the deed to avoid errors that could create new problems.

If you cannot agree on who owns what portion of the home, you can seek a legal determination of this in court. You could argue that you have shouldered the majority of costs and should therefore receive a larger portion of the sale proceeds.

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