Getting a divorce means dividing the assets that you and your spouse own. One of those assets may be the house that you bought together. If you’re parents, this family home is very important to both of you.
But, if you’re both on the mortgage together, you both officially own this property. You may be able to easily see how to divide financial assets or smaller physical assets during a divorce, but what do you do with the house? Here are three options.
Buy your spouse’s share
If you still want to own the house yourself, you probably need to get a new mortgage and you need to buy out your spouse’s share of the house. They may be very interested in getting the value out of that asset, which has increased over time. You would have to buy the home at the new, higher price, and you can then pay your ex the money that they are owed. This leaves you as the sole owner of the home once you refinance your mortgage.
Sell the house entirely
Many people cannot afford the option listed above, perhaps because they can’t get a mortgage on a single income. Some people also have no desire to keep the family home after a divorce because it just brings up bad memories. This is why the most common solution is to sell the house entirely to a third party. When you do this, then it’s an easy process of splitting your earnings between you and your ex.
Continue owning the house together
In rare situations, two couples will decide that they want to simply continue to own the home. In some cases, this is because they want their children to be able to keep living there, so they use a custody solution like birdnesting. In other cases, they just want to hold onto the asset because they think it’s going to become more valuable. Some couples will technically keep the house, rent it out for a few years, and then sell it and divide the money after the value has maxed out. This is perhaps not common, but it is a potential solution if you want to get the most possible money out of your home.
No matter what you decide to do, make sure you are well aware of your legal rights as you work through this process.