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House not in both names? Real estate question.

Posted by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 9:53 AM
  • 10 Replies
Long story short, I have a friend who is fixin to close on a house with her husband. This is not their first time owning. She comes to find out that she doesn't need to be at the closing bc her husband did not add her name to the documents. She is not sure what he is thinking, but her burning question is: What are the possible repercussions if the house is not in both of their names? They are married and have kids together. She, of course, is wondering why he would do this.
Should the house be in her name too?

Thanks.
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by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 9:53 AM
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Replies (1-10):
FlyingMommy747
by Silver Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 9:58 AM

That could lead to a potential problem if they divorce.  Since it is only in his name, it is considered seperate property and he would end up with it.  If she is contributing to the mortgage, then her name should be on it.

sreichelt26
by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 10:39 AM
This. Usually if she's on the loan, her name is required to be on title.

Quoting FlyingMommy747:

That could lead to a potential problem if they divorce.  Since it is only in his name, it is considered seperate property and he would end up with it.  If she is contributing to the mortgage, then her name should be on it.

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mommy2boys03
by Bronze Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 10:44 AM

Also if something should happen to him the house would not automatically go to her and could end up in probate and she would have to pay taxes on it.  She shouls be on the title unless the house is in trust and she isn't on the trust.  I was told in Michigan it is illegal for the wife not to be on the title regardless on if she is on the loan.  When we sold our house in IL our lawyer found out that the house was going to be in the husband's name only and talked to the buyers and was going to help them get the wife's name on the house too to protect her.  The family was from Mexico and the man said there it was a common practice that the house be in the man's name only.

snowangel1979
by Silver Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:01 AM
I'm in Michigan too.
My name is not on the title or loan but being that we were married I had to sign paper work at the closing. We were told It's illegal for a spouse to by a house without the other spouse knowing, that's why I had to sign. It said it was part of the anti-terrist act.

I was told the house would go to me if something happened and my grandma had no problem selling her house even though it was only in her husbands name. ( he passed in '78)

That sound weird though.
It really wouldn't matter if they do get divorced because anything that was purchased during the marriage, Is martial property.


Quoting mommy2boys03:

Also if something should happen to him the house would not automatically go to her and could end up in probate and she would have to pay taxes on it.  She shouls be on the title unless the house is in trust and she isn't on the trust.  I was told in Michigan it is illegal for the wife not to be on the title regardless on if she is on the loan.  When we sold our house in IL our lawyer found out that the house was going to be in the husband's name only and talked to the buyers and was going to help them get the wife's name on the house too to protect her.  The family was from Mexico and the man said there it was a common practice that the house be in the man's name only.


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mommy2boys03
by Bronze Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:04 AM

It wasn't an issue with us I was on the title already but was just going off of what our closing agent told us.  maybe I miss understood.

Quoting snowangel1979:

I'm in Michigan too.
My name is not on the title or loan but being that we were married I had to sign paper work at the closing. We were told It's illegal for a spouse to by a house without the other spouse knowing, that's why I had to sign. It said it was part of the anti-terrist act.

I was told the house would go to me if something happened and my grandma had no problem selling her house even though it was only in her husbands name. ( he passed in '78)

That sound weird though.
It really wouldn't matter if they do get divorced because anything that was purchased during the marriage, Is martial property.


Quoting mommy2boys03:

Also if something should happen to him the house would not automatically go to her and could end up in probate and she would have to pay taxes on it.  She shouls be on the title unless the house is in trust and she isn't on the trust.  I was told in Michigan it is illegal for the wife not to be on the title regardless on if she is on the loan.  When we sold our house in IL our lawyer found out that the house was going to be in the husband's name only and talked to the buyers and was going to help them get the wife's name on the house too to protect her.  The family was from Mexico and the man said there it was a common practice that the house be in the man's name only.



azpreemiemom
by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:06 AM
It depends on the state.
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aidenmomplus4
by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:09 AM

Well sometimes married couple decide to buy property separately because maybe the other's credit is not good and it makes a huge impact on the price or loan, but this is something that needs to be discussed before hand. And depending on what state she lives in not having her name on deed may not matter because some states consider anything bought during the marriage as communal property so if she was to divorce he would either have to give her half of it and in some cases the parent that hold primary custody of the children end up being awarded the house for the sake of the kids. But in some states this is not the case, I think she needs to have a firm conversation with her husband as to why this is being done, also check the state law regarding properties bought during marriage and also make sure you get something in writing and legally binding regarding the house in case of divorce.

LDavis33
by Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:14 AM

If she is really that concerned, she should sit down and talk to a lawyer.  Here in Canada the home would be considered marital property, even if her name is not on the title.  As far as what would happen should her husband pass away, that is something that should be discussed with a lawyer (although I would imagine that without a legal will, all assets would automatically go to the wife).

atlmom2
by Ruby Member on Jul. 19, 2012 at 11:28 AM
The only reason I could see if her credit sucked. Otherwise she needs to demand it. What is he trying to pull???
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sammiesmom09
by on Jul. 19, 2012 at 12:26 PM

I am in somewhat of a similar situation to your friend. I am a SAHM ad have credit cards in my name that we use and when we applied for the mortgage since what I owe is more then what comes in(there is a ratio of what is owed and what your income is that they determine the loan amount-at least in NJ)  adding me on the loan we wouldn't be approved and if we were it would be for a lesser amount. So my dh is on the mortgage and we are both on the deed. We both signed the real estate contract for the home we purchasing.

I was worried and made sure I would appeared on the deed as I have a daughter and wanted to make sure God forbid something happen to my dh I wanted to make sure the house would go to us. Maybe your friend should talk to a lawyer as someone suggested and talk to her husband and see what he is thinking or planning. Good luck to her

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