If you are like many people thinking about divorce, you want to protect yourself. That means keeping a fair share of your property. Your house is probably the biggest asset that you have, other than your retirement savings.
Many people disagree with their spouse about the right way to handle the marital home when they divorced. Is fighting with your spouse to keep possession of the home the right decision to make in your divorce?
Reasons people want to keep the home
Making a decision about what to request and fight for in your divorce requires looking carefully at your goals and priorities. If you want to continue being the primary caregiver for your children and hope to keep them enrolled in the same school district, keeping the family home is a common-sense move.
Other people want to keep the home because it has sentimental value to them. Whether you inherited it, built it yourself or bought it before the marriage, you may have a strong emotional attachment to the property. You may also have limited income or moderate credit that would make it difficult for you to buy a home on your own right now.
Reasons people choose to let go of the marital home
There are numerous reasons why people facing divorce don’t ask for possession of their home. They may not be able to qualify for financing on the property. Refinancing is often necessary so that the spouses can share equity and remove the one not keeping the home from the deed.
Even if you can afford the house alone, it may be a source of painful memories rather than pleasant ones if your marriage was particularly unhappy. It’s also possible that you may only have a small amount of equity accrued in the property, making it a more practical decision to sell the property and split the proceeds than to assume a 30-year mortgage on your own.
Regardless of whether you want to continue living in your marital home, you probably still have at least a partial claim to some of its value in the divorce. Exploring what matters most to you in the property division process can help you strategize for your divorce.