If you and your spouse own your home together, as many couples do, it’s likely the largest joint asset in your possession. What you decide to do with that asset during your divorce is very important. Take the time to consider these three potential options:
Sell the home
Selling the house tends to be the fastest and easiest option. It also makes division of the proceeds easier. Say your home sells for $60,000 more than you still owed on it. You can each take $30,000 and be done with it. This feels fair to all parties and gets you through that part of the process.
Temporarily share ownership
If you’re not sure what to do, you don’t want to sell immediately, or you’re waiting for the market to get better so the home will be worth more, you can keep the home together. While rare, this is possible. Just make sure you’re very clear with one another about your plans, and remember that this means you have to keep working with your ex to sell later.
Refinance for one
Would you like to keep the home, but your spouse wants to sell? You’ll likely need to refinance. Once you get the mortgage in your own name, you can buy out your ex and keep the house. Couples sometimes do this when they have a dream home that will be very hard to replace. You may also consider it if you have kids who don’t want to move.
No matter what you decide to do, it’s imperative that you understand all of the legal steps you’ll need to take.