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Love is a Co-Purchase Agreement

Published: 13 February 2024
Time to read: 3 mins

Buying a property with your significant other is an exciting yet perhaps slightly stressful time. There are lots of things to think about and agreements which determine how the property is to be dealt with if there were to be a separation, tends not to be at the forefront of people’s minds. That said, even couples with the best intentions to remain together can sometimes find themselves separating. This is why it is a good idea for any couple to consider a co-purchase agreement before buying a property together.

What is a co-purchase agreement?

A co-purchase agreement is an agreement which sets out how the purchase of a property is financed – particularly if one party pays more towards the purchase price than the other. It can also deal with what is to happen with the property (and the different contributions to the purchase price) in the event of separation or sale of the property.

Co-purchase agreements can be tailored to meet a couple’s specific needs. The agreement can provide options to deal with the property following separation. These can include one party transferring the property to the other on separation or the property being sold, and a mechanism for calculating how the equity is to be split recognising the parties’ different contributions to the purchase price. Co-purchase agreements can also include provisions for how the mortgage and other household bills are to be met, and how any renovation projects are to be funded.

When should you get one?

Co-purchase agreements should be thought about and discussed by couples at the beginning of the house hunting process. The agreement should be finalised and signed by both parties prior to the move in date.

Co-purchase agreements are specific to the property. If a couple wishes to purchase a new property, a new co-purchase agreement should be considered.

Why should you get one?

A co-purchase agreement provides certainty. It invites couples to have open discussions about finances, which is one of the foundations for a strong and healthy relationship. It also has the benefit of avoiding lengthy future disputes, particularly at a time when emotions are already heightened. A co-purchase agreement is certainly something which is better to have and not need, rather than need and not have.

If you are considering buying a property with your significant other, or already have a house and wish to have an agreement put in place, please get in touch with our family law team.


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