Housing rights of cohabiting sole homeowners

Rights to occupy the home in the short or long term, to prevent sale and to pay mortgage after breakup with a sole owner.

This content applies to England & Wales
  • Relationship breakdown law

    A combination of family and housing law governs rights of cohabiting couples where one person is sole homeowner.

  • Occupation rights

    Occupation rights that might allow a non-owning partner to remain in the family home after the breakup.

  • Occupation orders 

    Courts can make occupation orders to enforce rights to occupy the home on application by sole owners or their non-owning cohabitants.

  • Preventing sale or disposal

    Sole owners can usually dispose of their property as they wish, but a non-owing cohabitant may be able to prevent sale or disposal of the home.

  • After a sale or disposal

    Limited circumstances in which it may be possible for a non-owning cohabitant to take action after a sale or disposal by the sole owner.

  • Long term occupation options

    Agreements on what will happen to the home after the breakup and court’s powers to decide who stays in the home in the long term.