Divorce and Your Home: Your Options for Buying and Selling

Getting a divorce can be one of the most emotional watershed events of an individual's life. It affects all elements of life and that includes your living arrangements because jointly owning a home is no longer an option. Unfortunately, the fact that it is an emotional time can mean that you walk right into some of the most costly mistakes you could ever make when formulating a settlement. Regardless of how you are feeling, it is necessary to check out your options and find out as much information as you possibly can in a logical manner to make sure that you get the best settlement for you.

The first major decision you have to make when getting a divorce is which party is remaining within the home. It may be that neither of you want to stay in your home or that both of you do but you have to decide between you what is to happen to your property. You have four different options - sell the home and split the money, buy out your former spouse's share of the home, sell your share to your former spouse or keep it as it is with you essentially becoming roommates. This is a difficult decision to make so it is necessary to ask yourself several questions. First of all, can you afford to buy out your former spouse and maintain the budget? Do you want to move out to escape old memories? Is it possible to come to an amicable agreement without involving a lawyer? All of these questions are vital to your final decision.

If you choose to sell the house with neither party remaining in it then you should both attempt to maximise the final price that buyers are prepared to pay for your home. You will have to divide up all costs to get the house in the best condition possible and make sure that you work together to bring all of your financial affairs in line. Bear in mind though that the final settlement does all depend on your divorce agreement and the property laws that apply to your circumstances.

If you choose to buy out your spouse or have your spouse buy you out then the process is slightly different. For example, you will first have to determine whether or not you can afford to buy your spouse out because you may have trouble getting a loan. In addition, you will have to make sure that you can afford to pay the bills on your own. However, if you are moving out and plan to buy a new home then you may have difficulty in getting a mortgage as a co-signer of an existing mortgage, even if you have no longer got an obligation to pay it under the divorce settlement. You should seek legal advice if you are not sure of the process.

Your final option is retaining joint ownership, even if only one of you is living there at the moment. You will need to make sure that you are aware of the tax implications but it does relieve the pressure on the divorce somewhat.

If you are selling your home then make sure that you and your former spouse are involved in every area of negotiations, contracts and exchanges. This ensures that you are fully up o date with what is going on. In addition, you should also make sure that you inform your agent of any divorce settlements when you are looking for a new home. That way, he or she will be able to tailor your search to your needs.

If at any time you have questions about selling real estate in Ulster County or the surrounding area, please don’t hesitate to contact Dylan Taft, Principal Broker/Owner, Taft Street Realty, Inc. - 845.687.9292 office or 845.380.3394 mobile.

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