At Reliance Financial Services we provide divorce financial planning services in St. Louis, Missouri. We know the financial complexities involved in the divorce financial settlement – even when finances seem simple. To help, we’ve created a series of posts called “Financial Divorce Advice“ which covers the most common financial issues that come up in the divorce process.
Financial Divorce Advice: Should I Keep the Marital House in the Divorce?
People going through a divorce may wish to keep the marital home. The reasons are different for each person. However, some of the most common include:
- The family home is the only home the children know and there’s a desire to minimize disruption for the children
- Sentimental and emotional attachment
- Worry or fear about what others may think
- Worry or fear about the loss of social connections should you no longer live in the neighborhood
- Hope of reconciliation with your ex-spouse
There are important things to considered before you decide to keep the house in the divorce.
Can You Afford It?
You should work with a divorce financial expert to determine the affordability of keeping the house after divorce. Your divorce lawyer will have you gather information related to your income, expenses, assets, and debts. This information is used in the divorce paperwork filed with the court. Working with a divorce financial specialist will help you take that financial information and analyze it for your divorce financial planning needs. A qualified professional, such as a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, can provide you financial divorce advice. They will help you create a post-divorce budget showing whether you can afford to keep the house. Having this answer, before you begin negotiating a divorce settlement, will make for smarter negotiations. You can also use an online mortgage calculator to estimate a monthly mortgage payment should you need to refinance or get a loan to buyout your spouse’s equity in the home.
What is the Financial Impact?
Consider the overall financial impact of keeping the house after divorce. A house is an asset that costs money to keep and maintain each month. Expenses such as the mortgage, insurance, taxes, & lawncare can really add up. While homes typically go up in value, they don’t usually appreciate at a greater rate than the total annual expenses. The recurring annual expenses can take away from your ability to put funds toward retirement, savings, children’s college fund, and debt reduction.
Now compare the value of the marital home to an asset such as a retirement or investment account. Retirement and investment accounts have relatively low annual expenses and depending on the type of account they could also have annual tax expenses. Even with these expenses, the stock market has shown that these assets tend to outpace their expenses long-term. So it’s important to understand that even when you can afford to keep the marital house after divorce, it often comes at a price. A qualified divorce financial expert can help you weigh the overall financial impact of keeping house after divorce. With this information you will be better prepared to negotiate a fair divorce settlement.
A Certified Divorce Financial AnalystTM can perform the necessary analysis to determine your ability to keep the house after divorce. They will also help you determine the long-term financial tradeoffs should you choose to keep the marital home. Their divorce financial advice will help you avoid common divorce financial mistakes and transition divorce more financialy secure.
Contact Our Certified Divorce Financial Analysts for Financial Divorce Advice in St. Louis, Missouri
To learn more about our divorce financial planning approach, contact us online or by phone at (314) 250-3865 to schedule a free consultation. We would be happy to help you determine if our financial divorce advice services are right for you.
Going through a divorce is a very trying and emotional time for many individuals. Sometimes it helps to be surrounded by others that are going through the same situation. If you would like to find a Divorce Support Group, in your area, please visit the DivorceCare® website. The support groups are open to anyone and the majority of them are free.
Disclaimer: All articles/blog posts are for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal or tax advice. If you require legal or tax advice, retain a lawyer or CPA licensed in your jurisdiction. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author, who is not an attorney or CPA.