How canI get my ex’s name off of the mortgage to my house?

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How canI get my ex’s name off of the mortgage to my house?

My ex and I bought our home 7 years ago ( both our names are on the mortgage). My ex lived in the home, and paid 1/2 of the payment for 4 years. My ex left me and our home and for the last 3 years I have been paying the full payments. My ex hired a lawyer to have their name taken off the mortgage. I am unable to refinance; I tried an assumption and was denied and tried a loan modification. All were denied. I was forced to put my home up for sale. It was on the market for 4 months and no offers. What can I do to keep my home?

Asked on November 15, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Obviously a refinance would would be best if you wanted to stay in the house, otherwise a sale would accomplish what you need to do. However, if neither of these 2 options are open to you, there may be another. It's a bit of a ling shot but worth a try.

You could ask your lender for a "novation". With a novation, the original loan would stay in place but one of the mortgagor's name would be removed by the lender. There are, however, strict requirements forobtaining one. The fact is that from a lender's perspective, the more borrowers it can look to for repayment the better.

You would have to show that you have paid the mortgage without your ex-spouse; the longer the better. As long as you are current with the payments and have never been late, your lender may allow you to remove your ex-spouse's name from the mortgage.  A novation may also be obtained if you "buy" your ex's release by making a substantial payment to reduce the mortgage balance (assuming that you would be able to do so).


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