Divorce and what to do with a previously shared home

Many people who go through a divorce struggle with what to do with a previously shared home. A home is often associated with memories and strong emotions, both good and bad, and these feelings, coupled with a desire to provide some stability in one’s own life as well as the lives of children, often make the decision of what to do with a family home that much more complicated.

While, with all of the other changes that accompany the divorce process, it can be disorienting to move, selling a family home is often the best option for both parties. Selling a home and splitting the profits equally with an ex not only rectifies the issue of what to do with an existing mortgage, but also may provide an individual with much-needed cash while going through the divorce process.

In the event that a husband or wife wants to stay in a family home, that individual should go through the process of refinancing the home in his or her name. Refinancing is not only a litmus test as to whether or not an individual can afford to keep the house on their own but also removes an ex’s name from the mortgage and absolves an ex from any financial responsibility.

For divorcing couples who are in the unfortunate position of owing more on a home than the home is currently valued, it can be especially stressful to figure out what to do with a shared home. One option is to simply sell the home at a loss. Divorcing couples who choose this option should, however, be aware that their credit scores will take a hit which may become an issue when an individual tries to rent an apartment or purchase a car.

A divorce attorney can answer questions and provide advice about how to handle an existing mortgage on a family home. Whatever option a couple or individual chooses, it’s best to deal with a family home before a divorce is finalized.

Source: Time, “What Happens to Your Mortgage in a Divorce?,” Ashley Eneriz, March 29, 2016