Marriage does not change the property of a husband and wife. For example, the wife remains the sole owner of the car she had before the marriage. “But even after marriage, each spouse can in principle acquire property on his own, for example by buying something alone,” says Karin von Flüe.
“A married person can therefore also buy the house in which the family will live as the sole owner,” she explains. If the own funds for the house purchase come only from one side, it even recommends that only the spouse concerned should buy the house as sole owner. So might in the event of a divorce Discussions about compensation of the partner can be avoided or at least mitigated.
Martin W.* (Name known to the editors) unfortunately didn’t do that. Although he had financed the house in which he and his wife lived solely with the inheritance of his parents and a small mortgage, the couple – without much thought – entered the land register as half of the co-owners.
Well, with the divorce, his wife says that she received her share of the house as a gift from him. She wants to keep the house and only pay him half of the market value. Martin W. denies having ever intended to give his wife the share of the house. If there is no agreement, the court has to judge that. This is uncomfortable and usually becomes expensive.
A married person can buy a house on his own. He or she can just as easily conclude the mortgage contract on their own
. The prerequisite for this is that the income alone is sufficient to meet the bank’s affordability criteria. Otherwise – if both incomes are necessary for this – both spouses will have to sign the contract, i.e. are liable.
Secure in writing
How do you proceed if co-ownership is desired, although the funds come exclusively or largely from one source? Then it is advisable to record the amount of the participation in writing and to make it clear that the participation is not a gift. “Half of the co-ownership does not have to be entered in the land register,” says Karin von Flüe. “If a third of the equity comes from the man and two-thirds from the woman, this ratio can be entered in the land register.”
Even if both spouses participate in the financing of a property with their own means, it is not necessary for both of them to be entered in the land register as owners. For example, if the husband is the sole owner, so can the wife Participate with a private loan.