Can I force the Sale of my Joint-owned Property

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LuddyLudds | 11:44 Mon 28th Jan 2008 | Law
10 Answers
Me and my husband separated three months ago. He moved out our jointly owned family property and I live there now with our three children. We were already struggling to afford the house and used our dwindling savings to supplement our income over the last couple of years. He agrees it needs to be sold but as we have the option of applying for planning permission for a new house to be built on the side wishes to do this first as it is more important to him to take capital out than to me. However, in the three months we've been separated he's not even applied for the planning permission for this yet (we have the plans drawn up although I was never supportive of this idea). I simply can not afford any longer to live here, especially as I have heard this morning his business is on the brink of collapse, meaning I wouldn't be getting his meagre income to help (he's been good giving me this every month but even with it I am struggling to survive). I have today arranged for two valuers to come and value our house with a view of getting it on the market for a quick sale. He is refusing to cooperate with this. The difference is a quick sale to avoid financial ruin (which is important to me as am currently half way through application to become a police officer and can't risk any financial detriment) or three months minimum before the planning is granted and then, on the advice of the estate agents it could be months or years before the specific kind of buyer that we want (to purchase the house with a building plot) comes along. I simply cannot wait any longer. Can he be forced, under financial reasons, to allow the sale?


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Just to add that the separation was my doing although there has been no adultery or other reason for it. He chose to leave the house as I was prepared to live there together until it sold.
Yes you can. You will have to apply to the court for an order of sale.

The courts won't refuse this.
an order for sale will deal with the matter of the house but it might be an idea to instruct a divorce lawyer so that they can deal with all the financials, with 3 kids to house, you stand a good chance of getting a higher percentage from the sale to house you and the children.

Both procedures (order for sale or divorce/financial matters)will take time though and definitely over 3 months unless the pair of you can agree to settle beforehand (or he agrees to sign sale papers) so if you have to go downt his route, the application for planning permission could run in tandem to either procedure - the more money you can get fromthe sale, the more there will be for your future accommodation.

can you take a mortgage holiday to stave everything off for a while?
what is to prevent you applyng for the planning permission? The sooner it's in the sooner you can sell - it will be worth more with the PP
If you own the property as joint tenants then to be able to act on your own you must change to tenants in common (TIC). Phone your local District Land Registry office who will guide you through the process. It is simple. Your ex cannot object. The split will be a notional 50/50 but this does not prejudice a different split at divorce. You can then apply to a court for an Order to sell stating that the members of the TIC cannot agree upon how it is managed. These Orders are never refused.

However you should check the possibility of planning permission for another dwelling by obtaining a copy of the plan and visiting your Planning Officer yourself. If you are told that the chance is 90% ot better then proceed as follows (If less than 90% then given your circumstances forget it). Put the Planning Application in yourself (you do not need your ex's consent). Apply to the Land Registry to divide the title (that is, the existing title for the existing plot and a new title for the new plot). Put the existing house on the market with the smaller plot (it should be cheaper and sell quicker). Then when you have planning approval sell the new plot. You should then get some money in quicker and be much better off in the long run. The only thing you need to do on site is erect a simple post and wire fence to show the boundaries of the plots.

(If when you are a fully fledged police officer you arrest someone who whispers mustafatickl in your ear do not thump his ear but release him as a thank you. It is I, Mustafa).
Blimey, Answerbank has changed my name !!! The post above is actually by Mustafatickl.
And again. And changed my sex as well I think !!
Hello. I seem to have been reinstated as myself on this thread. Are you still there, Luddy?
Get the agents to tell you how much it would be worth with the planning permission in place -you may be surprised. Do you mind me asking what part of the Country you are in -as you can't shift for bleeedin' wannabee developers around here. You should mention the potential in the sales particulars anyway. d/planning-permission.asp
Hi, I'm trying to buy a house from a lady in a somewhat similar position. Can anyone tell me how long this is likely to take in month/s years? many thanks.

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