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How is the mortgage handled in a divorce?

One of the most common questions divorce attorneys are asked by their clients surrounds the mortgage of the family home. Couples want to know what happens to the family home, if it should be kept by one of the spouses, and what happens to the mortgage. These are all important topics, but the one we will focus on today involves the mortgage.

When this question is asked, most divorce attorneys will respond with the same answer: Sell the home. Selling the home is the best option. If there is equity left in the home, it will make it easy to sell and then split the profits between you and your former spouse.

Should one of you wish to keep the house and live in it, it's best to refinance the mortgage in the individual's name. This should only be done if the spouse keeping the home can afford to make the monthly payments.

You also have the option of signing what's called a quitclaim deed. This deed transfers the interest of real property between two people. When this deed is signed, it means the person signing it has forfeited his or her right and his or her claim to the property.

If there is more left on the mortgage than the house is worth, selling it will be a very difficult option. You can decide to continue to live in the home. Or, you could decide to rent the home to tenants instead of selling it.

Are you headed for a high-asset divorce in Fort Lauderdale? An experienced family law attorney can help you understand what is at stake and how you should proceed with the mortgage.

Source: Woman's Divorce, "Divorce and Mortgage Questions," accessed Nov. 14, 2017

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