Perhaps one of the most sensitive financial subjects surrounding divorce is who gets to keep the house. There is a myriad of financial and emotional implications with what do to with the home. In many marriages, the family home is the single largest asset and either keeping or losing it can have a large impact on everyone involved. As with most agreements between divorcing couples, the easiest resolution would be to come to a fair decision together. Unfortunately, this cannot always happen because both parties feel they have a legitimate claim to the property. Arguments can also be compounded once children are involved.

I want to keep the house, what can I do?

Determining who should rightfully keep ownership of the home can be a tricky subject. One large factor is when the home was purchased. For example, if the home was purchased before the marriage the original purchasing party can have a larger claim. If however the home was purchased after the marriage it is more likely than not going to be considered a marital asset. In Utah and many other states, family courts and judges will do their best to split marital assets and property in an equal manner.

Determining if you can afford to keep the house.

Even if you are able to come to an agreement with your ex-spouse, you may not be able to financially support the home. In most cases, the house will be refinanced to determine the value of the home and what the remaining equity will be. This means one party will be removed from the deed and the mortgage, but it will come at a price. Simply put if the marital home is to stay with one parent, the other parent will be awarded a buyout sum. How things proceed from there will be determined on your current ability to pay for the home. Judges may also take into account if you have children in your marriage. Moving from a place children call home can be an emotionally damaging experience and it may be in your child’s best interest to stay in familiar schools and neighborhoods.

Keeping the house can be complex.

We would love to be able to give you straight, “if-then” scenarios. However, every case is unique and so will the outcomes. If you are going through a divorce and are concerned about the family home the best thing you can do is seek a case review. During these meetings, an experienced attorney will be able to breakdown your situation for you. This will help you get a better understanding of where you stand in the eyes of the law. If you are a resident of West Jordan or anywhere in Utah we are happy to schedule a consultation. Contact The Ault Firm today to speak with a family law attorney.