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Shared Property Home Residence Question

Discussion in 'Joint Ownership' started by Dhite, Nov 30, 2019.

  1. Dhite

    Dhite Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    Missouri
    My wife and her sister bought property together here in Missouri several years ago. We built a duplex house with a shared kitchen on the property together (My wife and I and her sister and her husband). We split the cost down the middle as we were building ourselves over the last few years.
    .
    My wife retired two years ago and we moved in and have been living in it for 2 years. The electric, phone, satellite TV and internet are in our name and they pay none of it. They come down every other weekend or so and use all of the above when they are here.

    A few things such as the furnace and water well we paid for and they are to pay half off each of those items when they move in when he retires. We made a verbal agreement on all of this 4 years ago, The agreement was when they sell their house they are to pay us off (Just under $10,000).

    Now they want to move in before they sell their house and not pay us the $10,000 which is breaking the verbal agreement. How can I tell them no and can I buy them out?
     
  2. Zigner

    Zigner Well-Known Member

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    Since they're not selling their house, I don't believe they have to pay you $10,000 (per YOUR agreement). You can tell them "no" and they can ignore you. You can make any offer you want to buy them out, but they don't have to accept it. You may end up forcing a partition sale and both losing the property.
     
  3. Dhite

    Dhite Law Topic Starter New Member

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    The agreement was: They were not going to move in until Darrel retires. Then they were to sell their house and have somewhere to move and pay us off. So they are breaking the verbal agreement. The question is: Is a verbal agreement binding with four witnesses and several family members as second hand witnesses?
     
  4. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Probably not. Read the Missouri Statute of Frauds which requires such agreements to be in writing to be enforceable:

    2018 Missouri Revised Statutes :: Title XXVIII - Contracts and Contractual Relations :: Chapter 432 - Contracts Required to Be in Writing :: Section 432.010 Statute of frauds — contracts to be in writing.

    Consult an attorney and review your options.
     
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  5. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    Our law doesn't recognize oral agreements as regards real estate.

    Bottom line, if it isn't a written contract, it doesn't exist.

    I suggest you retain the services of an attorney to determine what, IF ANYTHING, you can do to correct the mess you've created.
     
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  6. Zigner

    Zigner Well-Known Member

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    So now there are two versions of the "agreement"? Sounds to me like there was no agreement at all. In any case, as pointed out by Army Judge, any such agreement (if one exists in the first place) is likely unenforceable. Consult with an attorney.

     
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  7. Dhite

    Dhite Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Thank you everyone. I understand what needs to happen now. We are drafting a contract and will speak to them this week about it. They are still a few weeks out on the sale of their house.
     
  8. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Good luck with that. :)
     
  9. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    What names are on the deed to the property where you reside?

    The names on the deed reveal are the LEGAL owners of the property.

    If there are four names on the deed, each of the four people hold equal ownership and rights to the property.
     

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