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What options do I have regarding the family home in a divorce?

Couples Woodbury area make memories in the family home, some good, some bad.  However, some marriages become so difficult that they end in divorce, marring these memories. When that happens decisions will have to be made about what to do with the family home the couple spent so many years in.

Option 1: One spouse keeps the home

In some circumstances one spouse may have an emotional attachment to the home, especially if they are granted custody of the children and want to continue raising them in a familiar environment. When this happens, that spouse may be awarded the family home in the property division process. However, since both spouses have an ownership interest in the home if it is purchased during the course of the marriage, then the spouse retaining the home may need to buy out their ex’s share in the home or their ex must receive additional property of a fair value in the property division process.

In addition, it is important to remember that there are many costs involved in homeownership, including the paying the mortgage, property taxes, homeowner’s insurance and upgrades and repairs. If you want to keep the family home following a divorce, you will need to make sure you can afford to do so on a single income.

Option 2: The divorcing couple sells the home

If the costs of keeping the home are too high or if both spouses simply want to walk away from the divorce process with a fresh start, they may decide to sell the home and split the proceeds. It is important to note that there may be capital gains taxes to pay if you sell the family home and that those selling a home customarily are responsible for brokers’ commissions. These costs will have to be allocated between the spouses.

Option 3: Both spouses continue owning the home together

In other circumstances, a divorcing couple will decide that they both will retain an ownership interest in the home as a joint asset following their split. However, this takes a certain amount of cooperation regarding who will pay for what home ownership costs. In addition, this also means the couple will remain linked together through the home, even after their divorce is complete. However, this may be an appealing option for couples who want to keep the home until the children are grown, and then sell the home together at a later date.

In the end, deciding how to handle the family home in a divorce is a personal decision. In Minnesota, property in a divorce is divided equitably, meaning based on what is fair even if this does not lead to a 50/50 split. If you are facing divorce, it is important that you understand your rights and options regarding the family home before deciding what to do with this financially and emotionally valuable asset.