My brother and I own a residential property that we both live at. There are two homes. If I should decide I would like to sell, get my money and move elsewhere, can he prevent the sale? How does this work or not?
A co-owner can force the sale by filing a partition action. This is a court process. If the filing of the action does not prompt a settlement (i.e., the purchase by the remaining co-owner), the Court will typically appoint a receiver to handle the sale of the entire property. Seek the advice of an attorney before filing any action.
You are not alone in facing sibling conflict over family property.
Your first refuge from litigation in a family real estate controversy is mediation. In mediation, creative solutions can emerge that never appear once fighting starts.
There are mediators like me who help families work things out online, through email, Skype, and telephone. Online mediation is more flexible and affordable, and produces more satisfying results, than throwing folks in a room for a day and pressurizing them.
You may also want to look up Jim Hildreth, former mayor of Sonora, who is a non-attorney mediator and real estate expert. If you do, tell him hello from me.
If you are both on title, the only way to sell is to file a partition action in court. Consult with an attorney experienced in real estate litigation to review how this done.
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