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Ulysses101, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 3573
Experience:  11 years experience in Canada family law, plus criminal, civil, and employment
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My boyfriend of 3 years whom I live with has failed to make

Customer Question

My boyfriend of 3 years whom I live with has failed to make the mortgage payments and the bank just sent us notice that we have court on the 25th because they are forclosing on the house. Now I was told by a friend that if I call the mortgage broker and say that I will take over the payments that they would stop the forclosure and work with me...since we are common law and I'm intiled to half...and my name is ***** ***** this mortgage...he had bought the house just before I came can I really do that
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

Hello, thank you for writing. What province are you in please?

So you're not on title to the property, nor are you on the mortgage?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm in Nanaimo bc...
..and that is correct
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

The mortgage broker is sort of correct. The mortgage holder, probably the bank, doesn't want to foreclose or take anyone to court. That's a waste of time and money and legal fees for them. They just want the mortgage paid. And they don't care who pays it.

Whether you're entitled to any value of the home in family law is a different story. After three years of commonlaw I'm sure you are. But you're not on the hook to pay the mortgage, and paying it doesn't put you on title or on the mortgage. I just want you to be aware of that.

So, to forestall the foreclosure, feel free to make the payments due. I hope you're not tossing your money into a pit. Your boyfriend may start to consider you as a bailout option. But that's between you.

So the simple answer is "yes, pay the outstanding mortgage payments if you wish, you're allowed to".

Does that make sense? If there's more to discuss then please reply to me. If I've answered you then I'd appreciate a positive service rating please.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Okay that's great how do I go about that....we have court in 2 weeks is that enough time to stop the proceedings ...and if so do I have to have him consent to that or do I need him to be involved in it at all.....he is a very stubborn and very proud guy and is taking this in the wrong if you I'm trying to steal his home...his pride is hurt
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

I'm sorry that his pride is in the way. But pride doesn't keep a roof over your head, right?

If you want to do this, then go to the bank and ask for the credit/mortgage manager. Tell him or her that you want to make a payment onto the mortgage debt. They won't ask why, they only want their money. Make sure you get a receipt. Confirm how much needs to be paid to bring the mortgage into good standing and to stop the foreclosure proceedings.

They don't want to do this because it's a pain for them. They just want their money. I'm sure you'll find that they are nice about it. If they want to be dinks then they'll tell you to contact their lawyer or legal department as listed on the foreclosure documents, in which case you do so.

If your spouse is that proud, tell him that he can pay you back and that you expect him to.

Anything else about this to discuss?

Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

Are you getting this mortgage issue worked out now?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm going to the bank today ton talk to them..iv been on late shift at work and haven't been able to make it before they close...I'm very nervous about them questioning me about my bf and why he hasn't paid....also do I need to pay the full arrears for it to stop the forclosing....also he is 3 yrs behind on property taxes a total of about 3800 won't they take the house if that's not paid...also once we r caught up with the mortgage can we pull the equity on the house to pay off bills
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

You're in a fix for sure. I hope you've discussed this with him. I do a lot of family law, and if your boyfriend is this determined to keep you out of the home's finances then that's warning bells for me. It may not just be pride; it may be that since you're not married and he pays the mortgage and taxes, he's setting up a situation whereby you have no claim to any equity in the home if you separate.

I'm not suggesting anything about your relationship. But a big part of my job as a lawyer I say is "to spot your worst case scenarios which you haven't considered, and tell you how to avoid them".

I'd hate to think that you're going to throw down thousands of dollars here, when it's clear that his income can't keep things going, when he doesn't want you to, and have that lead to more tension and a breakup. After you've spent all your money on "his" house.

So if you haven't had a discussion with him about this first, I think you should before you pay anything.

The bank won't question you about why your boyfriend hasn't paid. You're not responsible to pay, so they don't want to hear it from you. And they don't really care anyway why he's behind, they just want their money.

Now, how badly they want their money is going to determine how much negotiating and information sharing they will do. Since you're not on title or on the mortgage, the bank shouldn't be talking to you about this at all. So if they say "we'll gladly take your money and apply it to the mortgage, but we can't discuss any details because you're not a party to the foreclosure or the mortgage contract" you'll know why. However, if they want their money they may well talk to you about. Ask them what's the minimum to forestall this foreclosure proceeding. They'll say they need it all. Ask how much that is. When they tell you, offer half (if you can pay half). Don't offer to go on the mortgage or commit to further payments until you've discussed this with your boyfriend.

Three years behind on property taxes will result in lien on the property, it's probably already on title. The municipality has to be owed a lot before they force sale of a home for municipal taxes. If and when the mortgage is brought into good standing, your boyfriend could access the equity in the home to pay the taxes. However, the bank is unlikely to give him a good rate on a Line of Credit given his recent payment history, and to renegotiate the current mortgage before it's up for renewal, or get a second mortgage, is going to incur fees.

The bank might well relent if you volunteer to go onto the mortgage too. That's extra security for them. Which is what they want under the circumstances. However, I beg you to think long and hard about this. Being on the mortgage doesn't put you on title to the home, and since you're not married you have very few automatic rights to possession of or equity in the home (without going to court, anyway).

I'm trying to answer your questions but clearly I'm hearing warning bells all over the place about your situation. If your boyfriend makes good money, you have to wonder why he's not up on the payments; is there a substance abuse or gambling problem, or paying support for children you don't know about, or has another girlfriend on the side he's paying for, I don't know. But please, sit down with him and talk about this, ask the hard questions, say that if you are going to help now and in the future you need some assurances that he's spending his own income wisely because now it's affecting you too.

Does that make sense?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Yea it does ....and it's a substance abuse problem that's gotten us where we r I stoped putting money in the bank for the mortgage cuz I felt I was enabling him to continue...and in hopes things would change but I was wrong....I feel so at fault the house is going to be gone and I know I could have prevented it so I guess I'm trying to make up for it some how
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

At the end of the day, it's not your house. But it is your life.

Be careful about your motivation here. You're hitching your wagon to a horse with a substance abuse problem. You know you can't steer that horse (to extend that metaphor) so please give it a lot of thought and don't do so out of guilt. You're not his mother, and you're not responsible for his actions and choices. I'll bet all of your friends and family would tell you to simply get out while you can, and that's not bad advice. If you're not married and have no children, is this relationship right for you long term?

If he's compelled to spend his money on his addictions rather than keeping a roof over your heads, is there a future in this relationship?

If I were your counsellor, which I'm not, I'd recommend that if you're intent on staying with him and bailing him out, that you first sit down with him and say that things have to change moving forward, including:

1) He get the substance abuse help he needs, including AA or NA meetings, and that he agree to joint counselling for you both.

2) That he agree to put you on title to the property, and then you'll go on the mortgage too.

3) That he agree to arrange with his payroll to have part of his paycheque deposited to a mortgage account which is in your name solely so that the priorities get paid; either that or he must go on a strict budget that you will both go over regularly.

And that if he won't agree to this then he's not serious about either your relationship or kicking his habit.

But in my experience, if he's three years in arrears of property taxes, and the bank is about to foreclose, that he's too far gone already.

This is going beyond the scope of your question, but I'm here to help you.

If there's more to discuss then please reply, Tara. If not then I'd appreciate a positive service rating please.

Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

I know that I wrote a lot there, and I hope I didn't cross the line. But I've seen situations like this many times before. Is there more about this that you'd like to talk about?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No you didn't cross the line at all.....I did not end up going to bank. Because he wouldn't listen to me and thought I was trying to steal from him.....I think it's to late anyways I saw our house online last night in the property listings up for on the 25th of he doesn't go to court witch he probably won' we have to move out that day.....and also if he happens to miraculously go can he do something there at court to stop them
Expert:  Ulysses101 replied 1 year ago.

It costs the bank time and money to pursue foreclosure. They just want their money. Therefore, it's fairly easy to stop foreclosure in its tracks by bringing the debt up to speed.

Once the bank gets its possession and foreclosure order, you can still appeal that order to slow down the process. But otherwise they'll act swiftly to evict in order to protect the property.

You won't have to move out that day, but you should soon. In fact, in your position you should consider getting out as soon as you can.

Frankly Tara, I'm glad you didn't bail him out of this. It's clear that this relationship isn't going to work for you.

Anything else to discuss? If not then I'll ask you again for a positive service rating please. That's how I get credit from the site for the time spent on your matter.