The wisdom behind ‘Yeh tera ghar, yeh mera ghar’

Riken Mehta
Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Here’s why married couples should jointly register their home 

Most love stories we’ve read in our childhoods ended with “happily ever after...” What nobody talks about though, are the struggles that the wife and husband face during their lives. While I’ll leave the personal angle of the same for agony aunts to discuss, I am here to tell you how you can easily navigate your journey towards your own home, or the last of the basic needs - roti, kapda aur makaan.
 
Buying a house that one can call his/her own is sort of a natural progression in a married couple’s life. However, like other natural progressions in a married couple’s life, buying a house too has long-term financial implications. Thus, it’s only logical that you plan your decision to purchase a house very wisely.
 
In India, buying a house by jointly registering it in the husband as well as the wife’s name has various benefits for the couple, vis-à-vis buying a house when one partner is the sole owner of the house. 

So, here are a few reasons why a married couple needs to look at home loans as one joint unit and not two different individuals. 

You can buy a more expensive house
One’s income plays a big role in his/her eligibility for getting a home loan. So, if the husband applies for the loan, his salary will be taken in to consideration and vice versa. However, if the husband and the wife apply for a joint loan, then their collective incomes are taken in to consideration. What this does is improve the couple’s eligibility for a higher loan, and thus, the couple can probably choose a house with an additional bedroom or one in a swankier society.

A joint home loan not only helps share the debt burden between the husband and wife but allows you to think of houses that would be unaffordable on only one partner’s income. 

Unmarried readers and those who do not want to take a home loan with their respective partners, can also avail of the increased eligibility if you apply for a home loan with your parents or siblings. 

You can significantly reduce your taxable income 
One of the biggest benefits for a couple taking a joint home loan is from the taxation point of view. A joint home loan is beneficial to all co-borrowers, as they can claim a tax deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh for the principal repayment under Section 80C and Rs 2 lakh for interest payment under Section 24.
 
If two or more people apply for a joint home loan, then each of them can enjoy tax benefits under the Income Tax Act, 1961, with respect to the principal and interest paid during the year. The tax benefit, however, will be proportionate to the share of ownership every co-borrower has in the house.  

You iron out future woes in succession cases
Most of us have heard of disturbing tales wherein a partner or a family had to go from pillar to post to get property transferred in their names in case the single owner expired. The process of transferring a property from a deceased’s name to that of his/her partner or heir is not only lengthy and time consuming, but also emotionally exhaustive.
  
All these issues can be easily avoided if the property is jointly owned (via joint registration). This is exactly why personal finance experts suggest getting registration of property as the married partner is always the successor. By doing this, you will prevent unwarranted problems in the future in case of a partner’s death. 

You can save on lower stamp duty
Though this provision is not currently available in Maharashtra, there are a lot of states that provide lower stamp duty rates for women borrowers. This is done to encourage women to own a house or property individually or jointly, and in turn to empower women.
 
A woman in Delhi has to pay a stamp duty of 4 per cent, while a man has to pay 6 per cent stamp duty. In Rajasthan, a woman has to pay 4 per cent as stamp duty whereas, a man has to pay 5 per cent of the market value. 

As this provision is not currently applicable in Maharashtra, men and women home owners have to pay between 3-5 per cent stamp duty.

All these benefits stated above are available for all joint home owners, not just husband and wife. The house needs to be registered in your name along with the other home owner for you to avail of the benefits.

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