Going through a divorce is a difficult process that can be made even more stressful when you and your former partner have to deal with selling your home along the way. Selling a house during a divorce comes with a few differences when compared with selling a home traditionally, so it’s important to be vigilant throughout each step.
Things To Remember When Selling Your House During Divorce
We understand that getting your affairs in order during a divorce is hard, so for your convenience, we have compiled 14 useful tips to keep in mind when selling a house during a divorce. If you approach the sale on the right foot, saying goodbye to the property should proceed with minimal difficulty.
#1- Get on the same page with your ex-spouse first.
When discovering how to sell a house during a divorce, it’s important to work with your former partner. Though it may be difficult to remain civil during such a difficult time, it’s necessary to ensure that you’re both in agreement about the sale.
If necessary, communicate through your attorneys or in mediation about how the home sale should proceed.
#2- Decide the best time to sell your house with your ex-spouse.
While you talk with your ex-spouse about the details of your upcoming sale, ensure that you discuss a timeline as well. Selling a house during a divorce requires significant planning, and it’s a good idea to decide together when the best time may be to list the home for sale.
#3- Ensure that your home is ready to be sold.
If you’re in the middle of determining how to sell a house during a divorce, you’ll want to discuss your plan with your attorney (and your ex will want to do the same). This way, you can be certain that you’re both legally in the clear to list the home for sale. It’s important to die up any loose ends and clarify that everything is in order before you list the home for sale.
#4- Find someone with experience in divorce to help sell your house.
Selling your home by yourself can add a great deal of hassle to an already difficult time in your life. When selling a house during a divorce, take your time in finding a real estate professional to work with. It’s in your best interest to choose an agent who is experienced with the divorce process and can help guide you through your unique home sale.
Many local real estate agents know how the legal process works during a divorce and can help you meet the challenges of selling a house during a divorce head-on.
#5- Be able to explain why you’re selling.
Some buyers feel uncomfortable when they’re told that the home is being sold because the owners are going through a divorce, and while it isn’t good to lie, it may be worth trying to create a positive reason for the sale.
For example, you may request that your realtor tell potential buyers that the home is being sold out of a need to relocate. This is not an untrue statement by any means, and it takes the negativity out of the situation.
#6- Tie up any small loose ends.
When you and your former spouse decide that you’re going to sell your home, there are a number of little details you need to work out before you proceed. The two of you will need to decide who is going to take which pieces of furniture from the home, who is going to pay the utilities, who is going to pay the mortgage, and who is in charge of the home’s upkeep until it sells.
Take plenty of time to discuss your plans and come to an agreement ahead of time so that you can avoid unnecessary stress later on.
#7- Don’t move out too soon.
During a divorce, both partners may want to leave the house as soon as possible in order to avoid being reminded of the past. However, this may not always be the best way to proceed when selling a house during a divorce.
Many real estate professionals recommend that one party stays in the home until it sells instead of paying to stage it.
Additionally, it may be more sensible financially to keep one individual in the house, especially if the property still has a mortgage. Paying for three different home arrangements during a divorce is likely going to become costly very fast.
#8- Don’t be emotional.
Going through a divorce is an emotional time, and while your feelings may weigh heavily on you, it’s important that you and your former partner put those feelings aside when making decisions about the sale of your home.
When considering how to sell a house during a divorce, It’s best to approach the ordeal rationally. Think about what the best outcome could be for both you and your former partner and try to determine a fair compromise between what you both want.
#9- Know your home’s value.
If you’re planning to sell a house before the divorce is final, you may be tempted to hurry through and accept whatever offer comes your way. Instead, take the time to learn about your home’s true value. While you may want to wash your hands of the property you spent your married life in, you do not want to be short-changed.
Knowing the market value of your home can help set both you and your former partner up for success when selling a house during divorce.
#10- Know about liens.
Selling a house can be a stressful process, especially if you’re selling a house in a divorce. If you or your former partner want to take charge of the sale and the other party wants nothing to do with it, consider getting a divorce lien. This way, one partner can step away from the sale and be paid fairly once the sale is complete. The other partner can initiate and monitor the sale throughout the process.
#11- Sell the house as-is.
When you’re selling a house in your divorce, you may want to be finished with the whole ordeal as soon as possible. Additionally, you may not have the time or funds available to make renovations, repairs, or upgrades.
Instead, you may find it easier to sell the house as-is. You may get a lower offer than you want, but at the very least, you will not have to invest time and money into the sale.
You may also consider selling your home as-is to a professional cash buyer who is experienced in buying houses during a couple’s divorce. It’s one of the fastest, easiest ways to sell a home as-is for a fair price.
#12- Never rush into anything you’ll regret.
Time is often a factor when it comes to selling a house during a divorce, but it’s a good idea to take a deep breath, take your time, and avoid rushing into an agreement that you’re going to regret later.
Whether you and your former partner agree to sell the house during your divorce or you plan on selling the home after your divorce is complete, you’ll want to be sure that you’ve both had time to think about your agreement before you proceed.
Once the emotions involved have faded, the two of you need to be certain that you’ll find value in the choices you’ve made together when selling your house after your divorce is over.
#13- Dividing the cash.
You and your former spouse will need to ensure that the payment agreement you’ve come to is fair for both of you. Once the house sells, plan out who receives which sum of money.
#14- Have an offer strategy.
It’s wise to have an offer strategy when selling a house during a divorce. This way, you and your former spouse can avoid letting emotions get in the way of the sale. Decide what offer you’ll accept ahead of time and come up with a plan for dealing with variables that will likely come along.
Selling the house in a divorce is stressful: Keep Calm and Carry On
Divorce is stressful. Selling a home is stressful. Combining the two can make for a very difficult process, so in order to keep your wits about you when selling a house in a divorce, remain calm. Put your feelings aside and take your time when making decisions about your home sale.
To help make the process proceed as smoothly as possible, consider all avenues of possibility and surround yourself with professionals who have experience in selling homes during divorces. This way, you can be sure that you’ve got valuable advice coming your way when any challenges arise.