My parents insist on ownership of land after paying one-third of the cost

By Quoc Anh   May 23, 2024 | 04:15 pm PT
My parents, planning to use all their savings to jointly purchase a plot of land with me, stated that they must be listed as its owners.

At 26, I am the only son and middle child among three siblings. After several years of working, saving, and obtaining a bank loan, I aimed to buy a plot of land.

Initially, I intended to purchase within my budget, as I had already maxed out my borrowing capacity. However, with just around VND1 billion (US$39,300), I couldn’t find any land that met my expectations, so I proposed to my parents that we buy it together, since I planned for them to live on it. They agreed to contribute VND500 million.

My parents, originally from the North but later relocated to Binh Duong in the Northeast to run their business, intend to return to their native place upon retiring. Thus, for many years, they have not bought any property here, merely renting a commercial property.

I am employed in Ho Chi Minh City and have long been concerned about my parents residing in a temporary rental. I also feel awkward when I take my girlfriend to visit their rented home, which prompted my desire to purchase a house for them.

Since they intended to invest all their savings in the land purchase with me, my parents demanded ownership in their name. They argued it was practical: they wanted the land to be registered in their name to avoid any negative perceptions associated with living on their child’s property after my marriage. This, they believed, would garner some respect from my future in-laws and guard against potential neglect in their old age—a concern not uncommon in our society.

They further noted that the VND500 million contribution represents their savings for living independently in their hometown after retirement, without depending on their children.

While this hurt me somewhat, I understood their perspective and consented to their ownership, considering that, as their only son, the property would eventually be mine. Nevertheless, investing VND1 billion without being recognized as the property’s owner was disappointing, as it would have symbolized an asset I earned through my efforts. I genuinely felt somewhat disheartened and sad.

Is my thinking justified?

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