Divorce is never easy between two people who once dreamed of spending the rest of their lives together. But it’s a fact of life that not all couples stay together, so it’s best for everyone to simply end the marriage and move on as quickly as possible. One thing you might be wondering now is how to split assets like real estate property.
New Jersey’s divorce law practices equitable distribution, which means marital property will be divided equitably rather than an equal 50-50 split. What this means for you should be discussed between you and your divorce lawyer, but here are the potential outcomes you can expect if you’re planning to sell your home.
Prenups and Premarital Assets
While divorces in NJ practice equitable distribution, if you and your spouse have a prenup in place, this will take precedence during divorce negotiations.
Ideally, what happens to marital real estate property should be indicated on the prenup. If it is, this is what your lawyers will follow; otherwise, if you and your spouse can’t come to an agreement, this will be decided by the court under equitable distribution.
If you have a home that you’ve acquired prior to the marriage, as a gift, or as an inheritance, this is considered premarital property. There are even cases where you might have acquired property during the marriage and specifically made it a non-marital asset. In most cases, these will not be part of the divorce proceedings, so you’ll be free to sell these houses if you wish.
However, there are some instances where separate property may be considered marital property. For instance, if you’ve inherited a home but your spouse has spent significant amounts on its repairs and renovations, they may have a leg to stand on to demand the property. Discuss this further with your divorce lawyer.
What If the Property Is a Marital Asset?
If the house is considered a premarital asset, you won’t be allowed to sell the house without your spouse’s approval. You’ll need to agree to sell or have the courts rule in your favor to own the house. There are many different outcomes during divorce proceedings. These can include:
Co-Own the House
This is usually the solution that couples with children pick. Under this scenario, both you and your spouse will continue to own the house together. Either one or both of you live there along with your children until they graduate high school. After your children have become adults, you can choose to sell the house. If this is what’s decided during your divorce proceedings, you and your spouse will retain ownership of the property even after your divorce, and then you can later decide whether or not to sell.
Arrange a Buyout
During a buyout, one spouse will take ownership of the house by buying out the 50% share of their spouse. This means paying them half of the value of the property. As the sole owner, you’ll also be responsible for refinancing your mortgage, if you’re still paying off the house. This means shouldering the costs of refinancing your loan. And instead of paying for half of the property value, you may buy out your spouse’s share with any other assets during your divorce proceedings. In this scenario, you’ll be able to sell the house after you’ve bought out your partner’s share.
Sell the House
In case neither of you want the home or neither of you can afford to buyout the other or handle the mortgage payments on your own, the best solution is to sell the house. You can sell the home and then split the proceeds equally or equitably, depending on other assets and other considerations by the court. In this scenario, you’ll be allowed to sell your home, but the amount you can get from the sale can vary.
Need to Learn More?
Divorce can be a long and winding process. And if you plan on selling your marital home, you may find it taking a long time to finalize the sale, which can keep you from moving onto the next chapter of your life. At Quick N Easy Offers, we can help divorcing couples speed up the process of selling their home.
We’re your reliable cash home buyer in Middlesex, NJ and can provide a fair cash offer for your property within a number of days after viewing your home.
Contact us today to learn more about selling your home in Middlesex, NJ for your divorce proceedings.