Hartley Law Office, LLC

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Divorcing women: 3 things to ask if you want to keep the house

Divorce can affect everything around you. You may want to cling to the little stability you have as every part of your life changes. Amidst all the disruption, your desire to keep the marital home may grow.

However, is it a good idea for you to fight for the house? The short answer is: it depends. Whether keeping your home is your best bet depends on your unique situation. But here are some questions to ask yourself to help you determine whether it is worth fighting for.

1. How long do you plan to live there?

If you only want to live at your home for a couple more years, then it may not be the best idea to ask for it in your divorce settlement. However, if you want to keep your precious house for life, then the fight makes more sense. The costs of refinancing and selling it are usually not worth it if you are only going to keep it for a couple of years.

2. What will you need to sacrifice to keep it?

Property division is a complex process. If you plan on keeping the home, you will probably need to give up another significant asset. Your spouse may try to get you to trade your retirement assets. Before you agree to anything, make sure you weigh all the costs and benefits of giving up or acquiring certain assets.

3. Will you be able to afford it?

Owning a home costs a lot of money. Refinancing, mortgage payments, insurance bills, regular maintenance and hidden tax consequences can quickly drain your funds. Generally, you should only keep the house if you can easily afford it with your own income. If you will need to rely on spousal or child support to keep the home, it may be too much of a risk.

Be sure to consider all your options before making a rash decision.

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