Deciding to get a divorce is a much bigger decision than just choosing to split from your partner. Ending your marriage may potentially mean that you will see your kids less often, and you will need to give up ownership of some of the property you own. Determining how to handle ownership of the family home is often one of the most complex issues to be addressed during divorce. Some divorcing couples choose to sell their house and split the profits, but one person may not want to uproot their life. If both parties wish to continue living in the marital home, then disputes over the division of marital property may be difficult to resolve. If you are looking to retain ownership of your home, you should consider the following:
Determine the Value of the House
If you want to keep your house, you will need to buy out your partner’s share of the equity in the home, and the mortgage will need to be refinanced in your name. The equity is the value of the house minus the amount that is owed on the mortgage. It may be necessary to perform an appraisal or consult with a real estate professional to determine the true value of the home.
Decide How to Divide the Home’s Equity
Once a proper value has been placed on the home, you will need to determine each spouse’s share of the equity. Illinois is an “equitable distribution” state, meaning that marital assets should be divided fairly between divorcing spouses. A home’s equity may be split evenly between spouses, or another fair and equitable arrangement may be reached. Spouses may be able to negotiate an arrangement between themselves, but if they cannot decide on this or other issues, the ultimate decision may be left up to the judge in their case.
Once you have reached a decision about each spouse’s share of your home, you will need to determine how to purchase your ex’s portion of the equity. If the money to do so is not immediately available, you may be able to ask a relative for help, get a loan, or liquidate some investments. You may also give up other marital assets, such as cars, jewelry, or other valuable property, that are equivalent in value to your former spouse’s share of the home.
Contact a Wheaton, IL Divorce Attorney
During your divorce, you may have certain assets that are important to you, and you may need to determine the approach to take that will ensure that you can retain ownership of this property while maintaining financial security. At The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C., we can advocate for your interests and help you achieve your goals in your divorce. Call an experienced DuPage County property division lawyer at 630-462-9500 to arrange a consultation today.