Whenever a couple gets divorced, the two spouses must decide how they will split their assets. The value of the home is part of this — whether one person will remain in the family home or you will choose to sell, both of you will have some stake in the home if it was purchased during the course of your marriage or if you were both parties to the mortgage agreement.
Below is a quick overview of the three main ways to handle a home in a divorce.
Sell the house and divide the profits
The easiest way to divide the equity of the home is to sell off the house. After you cover the taxes, mortgage debt and all expenses related to the sale, you can split the remaining money. This can add some simplicity to your divorce process, though it may take some negotiating to determine exactly how the money will be split. A 50/50 arrangement may or may not be the best solution for your situation.
One person keeps the house
In this method, the best way for one person to maintain sole ownership of the house is to refinance. This will remove the other person from the mortgage, pay off outstanding mortgage debt to replace the old mortgage with a new one, and free up some cash to allow you to buy out your ex-spouse.
Keep in mind that under this arrangement you will need to qualify for the mortgage based solely on one income, which might be difficult depending on how much of the mortgage was still to be paid off.
Both spouses keep the house
In some cases, the timing isn’t right to sell off the house, so both maintain ownership — at least for a time. During this time, one spouse might move out but still assist in paying the mortgage or one party may pay the mortgage alone. The couple might also choose to keep the house as a rental property and split the revenue from that arrangement.
For more tips and guidance on splitting the value of a house in a divorce, consult an experienced Minnesota family law attorney with Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.
"Tori had a thorough understanding of my situation and made excellent recommendations to resolve my concerns. She was persistent on communication and handled everything in a very timely manner. I would definitely hire her again in the future if needed." - M.K.
"With Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., it is like having a family physician. They are all knowledgeable, thorough, comforting, and the only call I need to make for all my legal needs for many years to come. No matter what the matter, I totally trust their advice and commitment to me and my family." - J.N.
"Mary from APH Law helped me thru a difficult divorce. She and the entire staff was there for me every step of the way helping me on what to do next. They listened to what I wanted and helped me achieve what matter the most to me in the divorce settlement." - Dana C.
"I chose APH after my initial consultation with Mary. I felt my best interest would be represented. The entire process went excellent, the attorneys and staff communicated effectively and efficiently with me throughout the process as they needed to. Being new to the legal process and verbiage, they walked me and talked me through the next steps and the jargon, I felt completely comfortable and represented. I hope I never have to use legal services again but if I do I will call Mary at APH Law and know that I will be taken care of." - Jeff M.
"Divorce is a time of emotion and stress. Mary Pfeifer , My lawyer was professional and compassionate. She was very informative through the process. Her insight helped me in my decisions. She worked hard to obtain a settlement which was fair to both parties. Though, I hope I won't need her help again. It is reassuring to know a good person that is willing to help." - Rod S.
"I first came to Ms. Jacquelyn Lutz of Appelhof, Pfeifer and Hart in October of 2016. It was definitely the worst time in my life and she compassionately spoke with me about my options. Ms. Lutz thoroughly explained the laws, statutes, process and what to expect going forward. What was supposed to be one case, turned into three intricate cases that took a huge toll on me and my family. Ms. Lutz represented me in court on all three cases with a vast knowledge of the laws and how to proceed accordingly. During all three cases she kept me informed, calm, gave me resources to utilize, and (most important) gave me a realistic view of what may come next. Ms. Lutz knew each case required a great deal of knowledge and creative thinking on how to legally proceed forward with each case. My family and friends are forever grateful for the amazing representation by Ms. Lutz. I highly recommend Ms. Lutz for anyone needing or considering superb representation for any kind of family law. " - M.H.