What are the options for your house in a divorce?

On Behalf of | Oct 13, 2023 | Divorce

Moving from living together as a couple or family to living apart throws up many challenges. One of the biggest will be what happens to the home you used to share.

If the place was rented, then you can just let it go, but things are far more complex if you own it. Here are some possible options:

Sell it and split the proceeds

This has the advantage of removing that tie between you for good. It can also allow you both to make a fresh start, unencumbered by any memories (good or bad) the house holds.

If your mortgage is outstanding, you will obviously need to pay that off with the proceeds, but it may still give you each a nice starter to contribute to buying a new place. 

Hold onto it for the time being

Sometimes, when the market is depressed, it makes more sense to hold onto the property. Otherwise, you will both lose out on what you paid for it. If you wish to follow this route, you should remember that one of you failing to pay their part of the mortgage will affect the other. You could rent it out in the meantime, or allow one of you to stay there, perhaps in exchange for some other benefit, such as a lower divorce settlement. Make sure you put any arrangement in writing to avoid problems. 

One of you buys the other out

Some people get very attached to their house and make keeping it a priority in their divorce. That is fine as long as they realize it is just one of their assets. If a court decides how to split your assets, they will seek to compensate the party that cedes the house in some other way.

There are plenty of options, so consider learning more about the legal advantages and disadvantages of each.