Q: In January, 2009, I was scrambling to refinance my house since my interest rate was sky-high. At that time, I wanted to add my boyfriend to the loan and did so. He has never owned a home, so when we signed the papers, he closed for the first time.

Would he be considered a first time home buyer and qualify for the $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit? It would really help us out to have that extra $8,000 from the tax credit. I have searched high and low for the answer to my question, but am unable to find it.

A: Unfortunately, your boyfriend didn’t buy the home. He received his share of the property as a gift. You gave him half – or maybe more or less, depending on how he was added to the title of the property. And now that he owns a property, he isn’t considered a first time home buyer even if you and he broke up and he decided to buy a different property..

Since you’re the one who wrote, let’s think about how this situation affects you down the road: Did you document this gift to him in any manner or sign a partnership agreement?

If your relationship doesn’t work out for any reason, you have effectively given him half of your property and he probably has no legal obligation to return it to you. And if your title has not been set up in a way that protects you, if he dies and you are not married, his heirs would inherit his share and become co-owners with you.

You should consult with a good real estate attorney or an estate planning attorney who can help you figure out what, if any, options you have at this point. And if you get married soon, make sure title to the home is held in a manner which protects both of you or at least satisfies both of your wishes as to what should happen to each of your interests in the property upon death.

You’ll get much more information about adding a name to the title of your home and deed by reading the following articles:

Adding a Name to a Mortgage

Adding a Name to a Title

Adding Friend to Property Deed

Adding Life Partner to Home’s Deed

Adding Name To House Deed Without Consent

Warranty Deed Or Quit Claim Deed To Transfer Title Of House