Massachusetts divorce laws require a fair division of all marital property, which may include a couple’s residence. Some couples decide to sell their property and divide its proceeds fairly between them before finalizing their settlement.
As reported by Money magazine, issues that two soon-to-be ex-spouses may face when selling their home include choosing a realtor and agreeing on a home’s sale price. If a property sits on the market too long, for example, a divorcing couple may begin considering buyers with lesser offers.
Selling the property to a soon-to-be ex-spouse
When two spouses cannot agree on a home’s sale price, one spouse may choose to buy out the other. Because the Bay State requires a fair division of the sale proceeds, a couple may need to negotiate what monetary amount represents “fair.”
A professional appraisal of a property provides a fair market value and may help determine how to divide a home. Sale proceeds typically pay a mortgage balance and taxes; if one individual decides to “buy out” a spouse, he or she may pay the cash value remaining after the mortgage and taxes. Spouses may also use the value of a property to “trade” their fair share for other marital assets.
Affording a mortgage obligation
If one spouse decides to take sole ownership of a home, he or she may need to obtain a new mortgage or refinance an existing one. According to Mortgage Professional America, if both spouses remain on a home loan, both have liability for making payments. Child or spousal support, however, may affect an individual’s ability to cover mortgage payments.
A divorce may require considering how a property’s sale could affect a settlement. If one spouse wishes to keep a home, the other spouse may need to agree on a new mortgage or a financial arrangement.