When Should You Fight for the House in Your Divorce?

If you and your spouse are divorcing, a major issue will likely be what to do with the house. Presumably, the two of you share ownership, so unless you want the court to decide its fate, you must reach accord on the matter.

First and foremost, you should only expend energy and legal fees to fight for the house when you can clearly afford to keep and maintain it. Otherwise, you are spinning your wheels and wasting resources. Below is some more information to help you determine your course of action in your divorce.

Do you have minor children?

Parents can minimize some of the disruptions in their minor children’s lives by allowing them to continue to live with one parent in the family home. You may agree to postpone the sale of the home until the youngest child leaves home or by buying out your co-parent’s interest in the home.

How long do you expect to continue working?

Divorcing couples who are in their 20s or 30s typically have many years of earning ahead of them. If this is your scenario and you want the family home in the divorce settlement, you may be able to achieve parity by trading all or part of your interest in the retirement accounts. Since the house and pension benefits typically comprise the largest marital assets, this could be a fair trade-off.

However, if you are in your 50s or even mid-40s, this might be a losing proposition for you. Homeownership and its accompanying maintenance may get too much for a single owner. Trading retirement pension benefits or 401k funds for the house at this point in your life could be foolhardy.

Make sure to run any decision you make by your Charlotte family law attorney to make sure your choice is prudent.

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