Wants to sell mortgaged house over father's objections
Fatwa No: 85856

  • Fatwa Date:19-5-2003 - Rabee' Al-Awwal 18, 1424
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Question

I live in USA and I borrowed an amount of money from a bank to buy a house for my family. I'm repaying this loan by monthly installments with its interest. I have been doing so for more than 2 years. But I realized that this is forbidden in Islam and I decided to sell the house even with the same amount of money that I owe to the bank. But my father refuses to leave the house! He says that I might cause him to have a heart attack! So please tell me, if I should sell the house to correct what I've done 2 years ago, regardless of what my father says, and based on the rule. There is no obedience of any creature in disobeying of the Lord? Should I continue paying this loan with its interest for more than ten years from now, and I know that it is "Haram" in Islam?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

 

If selling the house will suffice in returning to the bank the amount you took from it and if the bank will exempt you from the remaining Riba (interest and/or usury) and if this amount will be large enough so that you can get back the installments you have already paid, then it becomes obligatory on you to sell this house as this is the only way to get away from this Riba transaction. Allaah Says (what means): {…but if you repent, you shall have your capital sums. Deal not unjustly (by asking more than your capital sums), and you shall not be dealt with unjustly (by receiving less than your capital sums).}[Quran 2: 279]

But if the price of the house cannot cover all the above or if the bank will not exempt you from the remaining interest of the ten following years, then you are not obliged to sell this house although getting rid of this Riba transaction is better even if you will lose some money as a result. This is so, because we fear that you might delay paying some of these installments, and as a result, more interests will be added. This might result in your bankruptcy and the loss of everything you gained in your life including the house, hence indulging in more Riba transactions. This actually happened to many people.

Now if you get some profit on your selling the house, that profit is lawful to you. On the other hand, if the price of the house is sufficient to pay back the remaining debt and if the bank will exempt you of the interest of the ten following years and if you will get back what you have already paid, then you should sell the house and, in this case, you are not asked to obey your father because no obedience is due if the person orders one to commit a sin. But be kind with him and try to convince him even by seeking the help of some righteous people. Tell him about the dangers of Riba and the obligation to give it up.

Allaah Knows best.

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