Options for Dividing Home Equity when You Divorce
Dec. 1, 2020
Once you married, you may have begun accumulating shared possessions with your spouse, and if you counted a home among them, you must figure out how to handle it if you part ways. For many former couples working their way through a divorce, the family home is the most substantial asset with which they must contend.
When it comes to dividing up the equity you have generated in the home you shared with your one-time partner, you may want to consider taking one of the following three steps.
1. Sell the Home and Divide the Profits
Unless one of you has a strong desire to stay in the house you once shared, you may find the easiest solution to be selling your home and dividing up the profits between you. This is a simple, fair way to divide up the equity you built during your marriage. It may also help each of you finance a new place to live.
2. Have the Party Who Wants to Stay Refinance
If you or your partner want to keep the house and the other party does not, have the one who wants to stay refinance the mortgage to get it under just one name. In doing so, the party wishing to stay replaces any remaining mortgage debt with an entirely new loan.
3. Nest until Circumstances Improve
A third, but less common, option for handling home equity involves both of you staying in the home during separate intervals until market conditions improve or the time otherwise becomes right to sell the home. A nesting arrangement involves you staying in the family home half the time and your ex staying there the other half.