How do you divide the equity on a home when you are not married?

My boyfriend and I bought a house together 6 years ago and we took out 3 loans. I have paid off 2 loans, for $16,000 and $20,000 by makeing triple payments. He has paid minimum monthly payments the past 6 years towards the last loan, for a total of $9000 in equity. I want to add that his income is 3x of mine, making it possible for him to pay more and we have disussed it but he is content making minimum payments. So now we are splitting up, how is the equity divided?

Asked on May 10, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Indiana


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

In the absence of an agreement to the contrary controlling how it will be split, equity is divided according to ownership interests: so if you each are equal co-owners, you get 50% each of the equity. His income is irrelevant--that does not affect his interest in the home or right to the proceeds. Also not relevant is that you paid more than he did: you did not have to, or could have entered into a written agreement with him that would have taken account of it. But without an agreement giving you more for your greater contribution, all that matters is that you are equal owners.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.