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Housing for Separated Fathers

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 15 Nov 2020 | comments*Discuss
 
Separated Dads Housing Rent Buy Mortgage

With separation, housing becomes an urgent and thorny issue. You might well own your current house with your partner, but what happens to that when you split up, and especially the money you have tied up in it? Even if you’re renting, there are issues that need to be faced. As for where you go, what’s the best path to take, renting or buying another property?

Your Current House

If you’ve been renting the house in your name and you’re moving out, both you and your ex should be aware that there’s no automatic transfer of lease to her. You’ll need to talk to the landlord and make new arrangements. You’ll also want your deposit back, since the amount will be very useful when renting a new place.

If you own the home, the two of you will need to make arrangements for your property. If it’s owned jointly, as most are, you have two choices. If one of you intends to remain in the house, that person will have to buy out the other. You can also decide to sell the house and split the money. If your partner is buying you out, make sure the arrangements aren’t just private, but registered through the building society, so you’re formally released from the mortgage. If not, then legally the property will still be classed as partly yours, and if your ex defaults on the mortgage, it can adversely ruin your credit rating.

To Buy or Rent?

When you leave, you can either buy a new house or rent. Rental has many attractions in the short term, as you decide what you want to do and where you want to live. Be aware that most rentals are on renewable short-term six month leases. You’ll initially pay the first month’s rent plus a deposit (usually equal to a month’s rent) which can be refunded when you leave, as long as the property is in good condition.

You might consider renting with a friend, but make sure both your names are on the lease, otherwise, if the other person is named as the renter and moves out, you might find yourself homeless.

If you decide to buy, you’ll almost certainly have to downsize, since you’ll be relying on just your income rather than that of a couple. But with most homebuyers needing at least a 20% deposit, this may not be an option for you unless you have a large lump sum.

Before you look at any property, make a checklist of what you need. Apart from the basics, each of your children should have their own bedroom (budget and the number of children might not make this possible), and there should be a garden where your kids can play. (See our article What You Need in the House for Your Child on this site.) If you buy, even if it’s just a small property, it puts you back on the property ladder, and if you can make a good down payment, your monthly mortgage might be less than rent.

Choosing your Location

The other question is where you should live. There are distinct advantages in staying close to your former home, since it makes contact with your children much easier. However, some separated fathers prefer to move away. This can be due to a job, the desire to make a clean break, or cheaper housing prices in another part of the country. There are pluses and minuses to both that you need to weight for yourself.

When You Move

Regardless of where you move, when you do switch addresses there are some things you need to do. Before you transport everything to your new place, go through items – do you need or even want them? Moving is always a good opportunity for a clearout.

You’ll also need to inform people about your change of address. That’s not only friends but organisations such as banks, building societies, the Inland Revenue, credit card companies, DVLA, insurance companies and your GP etc. This will ensure that important items of mail follow you to your new home.

Check out the Separated Dads Forum... It's a great resource where you can ask for advice on topics including Child Access, Maintenance, CAFCASS, Fathers Rights, Court, Behaviour or simply to have a chat with other dads.

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Hi I am self employed and I have my son 3to4 nights a week and rent with a private landlord is it possible to get help with rent and council tax
S1 - 15-Nov-20 @ 1:41 PM
Hi, I'm a father of 4 children aged 18-8.my current situation is that my ex partner cannot afford to buy me out. But I'm now with a new partner who id like to get a mortgage with.only problem is I am still on the old mortgage. And cannot get another due to our credit rating any advice would be great. Dave
Bart - 27-Oct-20 @ 8:44 PM
Hi, I’ve split up with my parter last October, we have 11 years old daughter together. As a PhD student and part-time employee I’m renting 2 rooms (one for myself and one for my daughter when she coming over for a weekends) in a shared house (3 friends leaving with me). I’ve tenancy until June 2021, and I’ll be able to look for the place on my own after that date. Yet, my ex after sever bad decisions, lack in communication and neglect, make me worry about wellbeing of our child. Is it possible to have full custody for a child when leaving in shared house? Thanks, Luke
Luke - 23-Aug-20 @ 4:57 PM
Hi all I'm a single dad and I have a 9 year old son who I get to have 3 to 4 days a week.one whole day and 2 to 3 overnight only...I live in a studio flat which is nice but not much room did house share before for 5 years but my son could not get on well with the person I was living with things just are getting worse with this living situation.i just want to know what my chances are of getting a place with the council for a single dad
Lee - 21-Aug-20 @ 9:00 AM
I have been married 17 years. We split 3 years ago and I have been awarded sole custody of the 2 boys aged 17 and 13. The mother is not allowed to see them due to her behaviour as stated by the court. I am going through financials in divorce and her solicitor is asking for a 50 / 50 split if equity even though she has not paid a penny to the mortgage since she left. She has not brought any birthday or Xmas presents and is paying £29 month maintenance. She is a self employed barber and has been under declaring for 17 years and I have informed HMRC and given them paperwork. I need help as I don’t believe she should have a 50% share if the house.
Jase - 12-Aug-20 @ 3:50 PM
@den.are you working ?.if you are just keep couch surfing for a bitsave your money up get a flat or house .tell your ex your situation and say I be more then happy to have the child though the day on weekends why I save up for my own place .spending the days at the park with your daughter will motivate you to save more money so you and your daughter have your own place and own yard to play in .
Christopher - 2-Aug-20 @ 4:27 PM
Hi, I’ve recently split with my gf who I’ve been living with for 5 years we have a 2 year old and is demanding I have her overnight ever other weekend problem is that I am sofa surfing and have no where for her to stay. Anyone have any options or advice? Thanks
Den - 2-Aug-20 @ 10:04 AM
I need urgent advice,I'm in an unhappy marriage,I have 6 kids and need to get out and start again for their sake.the arguments are very frequent.and usually contain commands to get out.i need to leave,but need some sort of accommodation.thankyou for any help.
Friendo - 25-Jul-20 @ 12:59 AM
My son lives council flat 2 bed with both his children mother vwalked out 2 years ago since keeps just coming walks back in says can stay coz her name on tenancy what l need to now is my son claims himself 2 kids rent which he doesn't get it all coz she still on tenancy we as family help him out rest of rent can plz some one tell me as a man with 2 kids on his own why can or is she able to just walk in when feels like it if he was a woman think he have more on his side she was man people was damn him for just walking in wen ever feels like walks outparty or mate needs her not that kids need her no my son thinks she take the flat and kids too coz she's a woman anyone now true rules single dad full time single dad 2 and 4 year old thank you
Di - 12-Jul-20 @ 10:29 PM
Split with my girlfriend & my ex is now saying I cant have my kids as now got no where to have them. (We were having them every other wkend) Will I get help with a flat or something as one of my kids wants to live with me
Anon - 29-Jun-20 @ 1:09 PM
Single male living in my Vauxhall Corsa. Have my daughter 3 times a week and stay in hotel when able to to spend time with my daughter. Wanting any available accomodation in eccington or surrounding area close to my daughter who lives at killamarah. I'm finding it hard and depressing and would be so appreciative of any little help what so ever please.
Liam - 19-Jun-20 @ 6:33 PM
I’m asking on behalf of my boyfriend who has an 8 year old son. My boyfriend lives in a house share where he has lived for almost 9 months & he sees his son every weekend. At first the sons mother said she didn’t want their son staying in the house share, as there was strangers there, which at first I understood to some extent. So my boyfriend was having his son at the house during the day & then taking him to his mothers at night, then picking him up again the next day. This is really sad for both my boyfriend and his son as of course he wants to stay with his dad at night. So I wondered what people’s thoughts were? Should his son be allowed to stay with him or not?
Lou - 15-May-20 @ 8:14 PM
Hi everyone. I’ve recently become a single Dad and I have 4 children 3 boys and a baby girl. I was renting with my girlfriend and I was lucky enough that the landlord took me off the tenancy. I can’t possibly afford a 3 bed house minimum to privately rent on my own and I applied online with my local council and they have said I’m no eligible. I’m currently back living with my parents and I can’t accommodate my children to stay there as there is no room. Has anyone got any advice for me please.
Steve - 1-May-20 @ 4:28 AM
Hi, is there any network in place for single dads that are co-parenting? I have separated from my partner whom I share custody of a 2yo. I've managed to find my own place, but as a student, I simply cannot afford it. I've contacted several local estate agents and they have all told me that I can't live in a house share if I was to have my child stay with me. Not seeing her or doing my part is not an option, but I cannot continue to live in the housing situation that I am in now. I am eligible for universal credit, but it's not enough to live on so I have to work, and because I work, they take 63p off me for every £1 that I earn, so in the end, I get nothing from them. I can't physically work more because I am at college or have my daughter. Any suggestions to help me move forward would be much appreciated.
Benjamin - 18-Apr-20 @ 3:01 PM
I'm also currently unemployed and trying to find something from Monday to Wednesday as I have my daughter for the rest of the week . I've been told that there are procedures to be followed via citizens advice in order to get help with housing from the council z
Bennyboy - 11-Mar-20 @ 5:25 PM
Hi I've recently split with my gf who I stayed with and we have a 3 year old daughter . Since moving from hers I'm on the sofa at my parents as there is no room I also have my little girl every week from Thursday to Sunday . Will the council help home me as I need some where safe to have my daughter ?
Bennyboy - 11-Mar-20 @ 5:23 PM
Hi there I have recently separated from my wife and I need to have my son 2 nights aweek. I currently rent a room but am not allowed to bring my son as is the case in most rented bedrooms. I just cant afford a flat by myself.just wanted to know what other options there are or if any one had some good advise.
Matt - 8-Mar-20 @ 8:27 PM
@jean.i have solution for you move in to my hostel your child will feel very welcome .and you my friend will have a blast the things that go on in hostels are (absolutely awesome) you will say to yourself men I am Never leaving you will say to yourself I have finally found my home .(problem solved).
Billy ray - 12-Jan-20 @ 12:40 AM
@jean.i live in a hostel with my daughter we love it .we share a room with 8 others it’s fantastic it’s really good for my daughter she meets people from all over the world she is coming very cultured.her mother moved to America to live a “slab city“.she has mental health issues she will be with her kind at slab city .
Billy ray - 12-Jan-20 @ 12:04 AM
In the caseof separation my ex partner me and my kid. If my ex wants me to leave the council flat. 2 Senarios 1: I leave with my kid can the mum be rehomed or will she be able to keep the council flat? Can I apply fora council flat? 2 I leave withoutmy kid to one place where I can't welcome my kid because it is too small and others live there. I call Council, But I am not considered as homeless, what can I do... my kid sad, I am depressed any solution?
Jean - 11-Jan-20 @ 10:43 PM
@scott.if they think the way I live now is bad .well I will set the record straight there was a time in my twenties and early thirties where I had (no house) I lived in back off Ute and picked onions and melons and sheared sheep and shagged pack packers and climbed mountains .so I think I am living pretty good to back then .i have settle down now i only climb mountains now I do miss shagging pack packers I don’t miss the back off the Ute .
C.laurie - 3-Nov-19 @ 10:20 PM
@scott.i live with my brothers I have for (years) and enjoy it and I don’t want to move out (gods truth ).people think I am (disabled) because off the way I live everyone has a right to a (opinion )if I am (disabled it’s not my fault)and I will always be in financially stuck I have a grade 8 education well I only did three terms off grade 8 but I did graduate from primary school .and I do have teenage daughter she doesn’t want anything to do with me .but I am social media maybe one day she will get (curious )and want to meet me who knows it’s been over 10 years off no contact so maybe she will or maybe she won’t it depends how (brainwashed )she is about me .So for me I will keep living with my brothers .
C.laurie - 3-Nov-19 @ 9:32 PM
Hi guys, I’ve been back at my parents for a year now after split with my ex.. trying to get back on my feet, financially stuck.. desperate to move out but private rent is impossible.. will I get any joy going to the council with my parents kicking me out? I’ve got a 5yr old son Appreciate any advice!!
Scott - 3-Nov-19 @ 5:53 PM
My ex partner use to have children twice a week at his moms. The council have now housed him in shared accommodation and it doesn’t look safe for my children. Should he not of been given a studio or something where the children are safe to stay???
Dobbo - 5-Oct-19 @ 4:50 PM
I've recently split with my partner of 7 years. We have two children 4 and 1. We get on fine and can talk and communicate well. I'm currently living with family but pay the mortgage on the house for my ex and kids. I help pay child care also so my ex can work. She pays the bills for the property. Is there any help she can get and I can get so I may be able to have a place of my own for my kids to stay. We want me to have them at least 3 days a week. Any advice would great on where to look. I live in Cornwall
Strudy - 16-Sep-19 @ 9:13 AM
Hi, I've had full custody of my 6 year old daughter nearly 3 years now. Me and my current partner arent getting on i need to find somewhere to live for me and my daughter as her biological mother is in prison I'm not getting jack s**t from her. I work full time 5 days a week, income ranges around 1400 a month, I cant afford deposit and 1 month upfront rent. Being afull time dad and working full time what am I suppose to do?
Kie - 14-Sep-19 @ 4:37 PM
Me and my partner of 13 years have split. We are not married, have two children and were renting. At the moment I'm sofa surfing due to the fact I have no savings for a bond or months rent in advance. I've got a full time job but this sofa surfing is really taking its toll as I have nowhere to have my kids over night. Is there any help out there??
Jack-army - 2-Sep-19 @ 7:55 PM
I've been unhappy in my relationship for years now. I have a step daughter (I'm not married) and I have a son. But I'm leaving my partner because it used to be best for my family, my children for me to put up with being unhappy, for the sake of my kids. But we are arguing so much in front of them that it isnt best anymore and I need to leave. I want to leave her but not them. And I'm still paying the mortgage and all the Bill's which takes 90% of my wages, the other 10% is basically getting by. I cant afford to go anywhere but I have to try and start again. I've searched and searched and I cant seem to find any advise for people who need to leave the family home but still ay for it. And start from scratch too. I cant take my kids home from them just because I cant put up with my partner anymore. Shes a good mother, just an awful partner. Is there any advice? Honestly right now, I'm thinking of investing in a campervan and parking it on my drive (it's a long drive), so that when I'm there I can be with my kids as much as they need and go when I dont need to be there.
Mike B - 8-Aug-19 @ 5:04 PM
I've been unhappy in my relationship for years now. I have a step daughter (I'm not married) and I have a son. But I'm leaving my partner because it used to be best for my family, my children for me to put up with being unhappy, for the sake of my kids. But we are arguing so much in front of them that it isnt best anymore and I need to leave. I want to leave her but not them. And I'm still paying the mortgage and all the Bill's which takes 90% of my wages, the other 10% is basically getting by. I cant afford to go anywhere but I have to try and start again. I've searched and searched and I cant seem to find any advise for people who need to leave the family home but still ay for it. And start from scratch too. I cant take my kids home from them just because I cant put up with my partner anymore. Shes a good mother, just an awful partner. Is there any advice? Honestly right now, I'm thinking of investing in a campervan and parking it on my drive (it's a long drive), so that when I'm there I can be with my kids as much as they need and go when I dont need to be there.
Mike B - 8-Aug-19 @ 4:39 PM
Me and my partner have recently split. We have a 2 year old son, we have joint 50 50 custody. Ive moved out of the house shared as a family as this is owned by my sons mother. I was wondering if there is any help I can receive with rent. I work full time in the nhs, but on about 1300 after tax. A 2 bedroom flat where I live is about 750 to 850 a month. We also split my sons nursery so 1 day a week which is about 64 a week so that myself and ex can work. I'm currently staying with parents, but moving out on my own with my son would only leave me with less than 60 a week to pay for food and clothes for me and my son. I've searched everywhere for advice. Can anyone here offer anything please
Sunil - 29-Jul-19 @ 3:30 PM
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