If you're wondering how to keep your house in a divorce, you're not alone. A lot of our clients have sentimental attachments to their homes. Your home is where you’ve made so many memories. It's where you raised your family. You may have close relationships with your neighbors or other strong ties to the community. I’ve written a number of blog posts and newsletters on whether or not it makes financial sense to keep the family home, and today I want to share a post written by one of my colleagues, Jim Robenalt, Attorney & Founder of Next Page Mediation.
The family home is unlike other financial assets and debts. A house is an illiquid asset, layered with emotion, that cannot be quickly cashed out and divided. It is often a couple’s most significant asset that houses their family and provides (and signifies) stability. In a divorce, the decision of what to do with the family home is often the most contentious issue to resolve. There are often...
When I look at divorce settlement proposals for clients as part of my Financial Consultations, there’s one thing I consider above everything else. I’d encourage you to do the same. In evaluating your divorce settlement, think of this first and foremost: Are you able to uphold this agreement?
Oftentimes, people want the maximum child and/or spousal support possible — and I get that. However, if someone is making a promise they can’t uphold yet they’re signing a legal, binding document saying they will, it could land everyone in hot water (or, at the very least, lead to unnecessary drama and possible post-decree issues).
It’s important for you and the other person signing the divorce agreement not to make promises you can’t keep. Consider these three things when evaluating your divorce settlement to ensure you're not forgetting the cardinal rule of “don’t make promises you can’t keep.”
Like I wrote in...
There are many factors to consider when putting together a financial settlement agreement, but one of the things that’s come up recently among my clients has been refinancing your house as part of your divorce financial settlement. (Enough so that I did a Facebook Live on the topic.)
There are two main things to consider when agreeing to anything, but especially when agreeing to a financial settlement that has pretty serious consequences if you’re no longer able to uphold your end of the deal.
First thing’s first… You have to make sure it’s actually realistic and that you A) can refinance on your own and B) are able to do so within the terms of the agreement.
Some of the language I’m seeing lately has been around the time limit for refinancing. In some cases, there are some pretty serious consequences if you aren’t able to — in some cases, I’m seeing as little as 30 days for refinancing. So,...
I stayed in my house when I got divorced. At the time, the housing market had declined so much that we had negative equity in our home. Selling our house would have put us in a worse financial situation than keeping it and we had three young children. Keeping them in the house gave them some stability during a difficult time for our family.
That said, maintaining the house that I had with my ex has had its ups and downs. I'm glad we were able to stay put but the maintenance was a lot of work for me at first. I've since gotten remarried and now my kids are a little older so they can help more. Still, when I was on my own, to say I was overwhelmed would barely scratch the surface of how I was feeling.
I've also had some huge home-related expenses since my divorce that set me back significantly. At the time, the decision to stay in the house was a no-brainer. However, looking back, I have to wonder if the stress of being responsible for the house hasn't been more difficult than...
If you are wondering how to keep your house in a divorce, you're not alone. A lot of my clients have sentimental attachments to their homes. You've made memories there. It's where you raised your family. You may have close relationships with your neighbors or other strong ties to the community.
Even if you are not particularly sentimental, you may not want to think about moving amid all the other changes happening in your life. If you have read some of my other blogs, you probably already know my stance on keeping the house in a divorce. In a lot of cases, it does not make the most financial sense. Keeping that house when you cannot afford it is one of the most common financial mistakes that people make when going through a divorce. That said, if you are wondering how to keep your house (without sawing in two pieces!), here is some guidance.
First, take a look at your overall financial picture. If you are negotiating to keep the house and...
I find it essential to develop a reliable network of professionals who can support my divorcing clients. There are such a wide variety of issues that arise during the course of a divorce. One that frequently occurs is refinancing the primary residence to remove one parties' name from the loan. I recently sat down with Amy Terrell, a Senior Loan Officer and Certified Divorce Lending Specialist with US Lending Corp. During our conversation, I realized there are some important issues that I wanted to make sure people are aware of when it comes to divorce and your mortgage. She was kind enough to complete a brief interview over email to share the information.
Some of the biggest mistakes people make are:
Are you worried about splitting assets in a divorce? Worrying over financial decisions is normal on an average day, but when going through a divorce, it can be paralyzing. The fear around these issues is completely warranted. You only have one chance to get it right and your divorce could quite possibly be the largest financial transaction of your life - not to mention the fact that you are likely overwhelmed by emotions related to all the changes happening in your life.
One way to handle your financial fears is to take control over your situation. Did you know that you don't have to divide your assets 50-50 right down the middle when you get a divorce? You may not even want to! If it's not simply 50-50, then how do you split assets in a divorce?
One way to have greater control...
Most of the time, when I sit down with couples preparing to dissolve their marriage, individuals assume that each account will be divided in half. Did you know that's not always the case? In states like Ohio, where the law requires an equitable distribution of assets in a divorce, it's important to remember that equitable is not always equal. If you have options, how do you determine which assets to keep in a divorce? Rather than ramble on about all of the issues to consider, let's take a look at an example of a couple with whom I recently worked. I will refer to them as Michelle and James and have tweaked the details so as not to divulge their confidential information.
James and Michelle were married for the last 18 years. Michelle is a teacher who has worked in a local Ohio public school district for 23 years. James has a job in IT in the private sector and has worked at various companies throughout his career. He has been with his...
There is not a simple answer to the question of who gets the house in a divorce. It is, however, a question that comes up over and over as I work with divorcing couples. The family home is one of those marital assets that has memories – both good and bad – and it is a topic fraught with tension when a couple divorces. Here are some key factors to consider when determining who gets the house in a divorce.
This question is not as straightforward as it may seem. Consider these questions.