If you’re one of many spouses in New York who want to live out the rest of your life without the person you married, you’ll need to make several important decisions, especially if you have children. Are you ready right now to live on your own, meaning, are you financially independent? Do you have a parenting plan in mind? Do you know what you want to do with your house? As for that last question, maybe you should sell your house before you divorce.
There are several legitimate reasons for selling the family home while you’re still married. If you and your spouse agree to do so, you must both understand that you must remain legally married until you close the deal with a buyer. It’s not something to rush into without thinking it through; however, this post provides several benefits that might convince you that it’s a good idea.
Selling your home before your divorce is an emotional cleansing
One of the reasons many spouses choose to sell their marital home before filing for divorce is that it frees them from any emotional attachment they have to the home after sharing it as a family during marriage. Selling it first, then filing for divorce, is a way to wipe the slate clean and start afresh without having the tangible asset to deal with. When you sell your home first, you’re simply left with cash, which the court can then appropriately split between the two of you in property division proceedings.
No mortgage debt or household expenses
When a family court judge divides your marital property, it’s not only assets that the court splits between you and your ex. It is liabilities, also, such as mortgage debt. If you sell your house before you divorce, you have paid off your mortgage. You also don’t have to worry about household expenses — at least not until you move into a new place.
Proceeds or equity can start you off on solid financial ground
If you cash out on equity in your home or use proceeds from selling it, you can alleviate a lot of the financial strain you might otherwise encounter as you begin a new lifestyle after divorce. Selling your home means you’ll have money on hand for moving expenses, court costs, rent or a down payment on a new house.
Lay the groundwork for an amicable settlement
Sadly, many New York spouses become entangled in bitter legal battles as they use their marital home (a large asset) as leverage to fight for the upper hand in property division proceedings. You don’t have to do that. If you and your spouse want to avoid confrontation and settle your divorce in as swift and peaceful a manner as possible, it might make better sense to sell the house before you navigate divorce.