Divorce can be challenging, both emotionally and financially. One of the most significant financial concerns during divorce revolves around housing. Whether you’re determined to keep your marital home or looking to start fresh elsewhere, the current high-interest rate environment can complicate matters, but that alone should not drive the decision of whether to divorce.
Johnson/Turner Legal has strategies to help you navigate through such challenges. If you are in an unhappy or even dangerous marriage, don’t feel trapped in it due to your housing. We can help and this guide begins to explore solutions tailored to your unique circumstances.
1. Keeping the Family Home:
For many, the family home isn’t just bricks and mortar, but a trove of memories. If you’re keen to retain it, consider the following:
- Evaluate Your Finances: Before diving into refinancing, ensure you can afford the house on a single income. Factor in not only the mortgage but also property taxes, maintenance, and utilities. Johnson/Turner Legal provides financial coaching as part of our divorce services to help you make this determination and plan for your future.
- Refinancing Options: Even in a high-interest environment, there may be options. It’s essential to shop around and talk to lenders. Consider seeking out adjustable-rate mortgages which might offer lower introductory rates or explore longer-term loans that lower monthly payments. Johnson/Turner Legal works with lenders who specialize in divorce who can help.
- Legal Agreements: If you can’t refinance immediately, consider a post-divorce agreement wherein the departing spouse allows a set timeframe (e.g., a few years) for the refinancing to occur. This can provide the necessary breathing room. At Johnson/Turner Legal, we have many creative arrangements that we can draft into your divorce decree to overcome these challenges and accomplish your goals.
- Alternative Housing Solutions: Some divorcing parents consider “Nesting”, which is where the parents come and go to the marital home on their parenting time day. Consider renting out a room or a section of your home. Platforms like Airbnb can be a short-term solution to boost income, helping you manage high payments until you can refinance or sell. These solutions may not be viable for most, but it’s good to at least be aware of the option in case it could work for you.
2. Leaving and Seeking a New Place:
The prospect of finding a new home can be daunting, especially amidst housing shortages and soaring prices. But there are ways to navigate this landscape:
- Purchasing a House: In many cases, the person keeping the marital home does not want to refinance now due to rates, but the departing person is worried about qualifying for a mortgage on a new home, if their name is still on the old one. Johnson/Turner Legal has solutions. We work with lenders who specialize in divorce. With the right language in the divorce decree, you can still qualify for that next home. If you are asked to wait on your share of the equity, we can negotiate to make that a good investment for you.
- Consider Renting: If now is not a good time to buy, consider renting. While this might not have been your first choice, it provides flexibility, allowing you to wait for a more favorable buying environment.
- Relocate: Explore less expensive areas that offer a better quality of life. If you’re working remotely or have flexibility in your job, this could be an opportune time for a fresh start in a more affordable location.
- Shared Housing: There are many shared housing platforms and communities for individuals in similar life situations. This can be a cost-effective way to have a comfortable home and also build a new support network.
3. Fairwell Mediation Divorce Approach:
A cooperative divorce process allows both parties to come together to find the best solutions, particularly concerning shared assets like a family home. With FairWell Mediation, a service offered exclusively through Johnson/Turner Legal, you can work with an experienced mediator to solve this and other similar challenges that may otherwise be difficult to solve in an adversarial forum. Instead of a confrontational approach, mediation facilitates a dialogue between spouses. It can lead to creative solutions that cater to both parties’ needs.
4. Engage Financial Planners:
A financial planner, especially one specializing in divorce, can help you assess the feasibility of different housing options. Johnson/Turner Legal has some great planners who specialize in divorce whom we can recommend.
Book A Quick Guidance Call
While the current economic environment poses challenges, remember that there are always solutions. Your home represents security, memories, and stability. With the right advice and approach, you can navigate these uncertain waters, ensuring that your housing needs, both emotional and financial, are met during and after divorce. Johnson/Turner Legal has solutions and strategies and we can guide you based on your individual circumstances. Contact us today to book a quick guidance call with a friendly divorce attorney.