Divorces can be contentious. There is often conflict over assets, such as the marital home. It is often that one or both parties may feel an emotional attachment to it. This is especially true if children are involved and one spouse wants to stay with the kids to create a sense of stability.
You may have a lot of good memories in that home. It’s familiar to you. However, keeping the marital home should not be a decision based purely on emotions. If you do decide to keep it, it should be part of your overall financial plan. Staying in your home will not come cheap, especially if there’s still a mortgage on it. There are other factors to consider as well.
Besides the mortgage payment, you need to consider other costs as well. These may include insurance, property taxes, maintenance, repairs, utilities and any association fees. Will your income cover all these costs? Will you be able to refinance the home and pay less based on your income?
Will you be able to maintain the same lifestyle you did before the divorce? Does it make sense to stay in the home? Would it be better to downsize and pay less money?
Sure, you may want to stay in the home now, but what about down the road? Won’t staying in the home simply remind you of a bad marriage? Wouldn’t it be better to start fresh in a new home in a new location?
While not the only factor, you may want to consider how your children will feel. Since divorces can be very stressful and emotional, staying in the family home can be a source of stability during such a tumultuous time. They may want to continue going to the same school and they may be scared to lose their friends. At the same time, though, life isn’t always fair. Children are forced to move all the time for various reasons. If you cannot afford to stay in the home or it would cause you emotional distress to do so, then by all means, move on. Children are surprisingly resilient. Plus, you can compromise by finding a smaller, more affordable home near their school.
In order to keep the marital home, you will likely lose out on other assets such as money, retirement accounts, vehicles and heirlooms. Are you fine with this? Would it be worth it to you? If so, what will you do to raise money for retirement?
Splitting assets in a divorce can be complicated, especially when it comes to the marital home. Usually, one or both parties want to keep it, but doing so is not always in a person’s best interests.
A Columbia divorce lawyer at The Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. can help you understand the pros and cons of keeping the marital home so you can decide if it’s the right choice for you. We have two offices to serve you. Schedule a free consultation by calling (410) 774-5987 or filling out the online form.
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