Armstrong Law, P.C.

Options for keeping or selling a home in a divorce

Couples in Massachusetts who are going through a divorce may share a home. Deciding what to do with it can be an emotional process, but there are a few options. They can sell it and split the proceeds. One spouse can keep it. Or they might continue to share ownership.

If they sell the home, both the individuals should have the financial stability to rent or buy a new place. They should also be aware that if they make a profit, they may have to pay the capital gains tax on it. If one spouse keeps the home, this usually involves that person buying out his or her ex. The house will need to be appraised first, and the couple must agree on its value. This may include agreeing on whether expenses associated with a future sale or capital gains taxes will be accounted for. Furthermore, it may also be necessary to refinance the home to ensure that the other spouse is removed from the mortgage. This allows for a clear financial separation between the two parties.

Keeping the home in both individuals' names even after the divorce might make sense if there are children, and parents want to minimize disruption. In this situation, the two should agree on how the mortgage, as well as various expenses, including taxes and utilities, will be paid.

There are several other considerations as well. For example, if both people continue to own the home, they may want to consider a child custody arrangement sometimes called "nesting," in which the children remain in the home while the parents rotate in and out. If they have decided to sell the home, they may need to determine how to cover expenses while waiting for it to sell. Often these issues can be settled without going to family law court.

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Armstrong Law, P.C.
287 Appleton Street
Suite 208
Lowell, MA 01852

Phone: 978-614-0965
Phone: 978-453-1044
Fax: 978-453-1055
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