General Question

AshlynM's avatar

If your name is on the deed and title...but NOT on the mortgage note...are you still financially responsible for the mortgage?

Asked by AshlynM (10561points) August 7th, 2010

Let’s say your spouse dies.

Since your name isn’t on the mortgage but is on deed and title, would still have to keep paying?

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6 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Yes, that’s the short answer. The the long answer is that is what life insurance is for to pay the mortgage and other bills. You will need a lawyer to go through probate.

BarnacleBill's avatar

Interesting question. Is the title to the property set up as joint survivorship or fee simple? It would be highly unusual not to have both names on the mortgage.

With a mortgage, the property secures the debt. The mortgage company has an interest in the property. While they could not collect the loan payments from the second person, they could foreclose on the property to collect the funds due them based upon their holding an interest. The property would not be able to transfer with clear title until the debt was satisfied; this is why when you purchase property they run a title exam. When you buy real estate, you buy all outstanding debt that is secured by that real estate.

Eventually, the mortgage has to be paid.

john65pennington's avatar

If you live in a 50–50 state, yes.

SuperMouse's avatar

If you want to keep the house you would have to continue making the mortgage payment.

YARNLADY's avatar

The house is encumbered, so if you want to keep it, you have to pay off the mortgage. If the mortgage company sells the house, the deed holder would get the excess of the selling price over the loan balance.

wundayatta's avatar

The estate would become responsible for the mortgage. Whoever inherited the estate then would be responsible for the mortgage.

I don’t know if there is such a thing as mortgage insurance that pays off in the event of the death of the mortgage holder. If there is, it seems like a nice thing to have. Some people have life insurance. Life insurance is designed to help keep your survivors ok in terms of living expenses.

But if you don’t have any inheritance that allows you to pay off the mortgage, you’ll have to find a source of income that will, or you’ll have to sell the house, or let it go into bankruptcy. Of those options, the first two are preferable.

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