You don’t necessarily have to fight over your home in a divorce. Still, it is a good idea to have an idea of your preferred outcome for that major asset.
There are numerous ways a couple can handle their house in the divorce. The Illinois family courts apply an equitable distribution law that usually means both spouses will receive some of the value in the home. Understanding that can help you explore the more realistic and beneficial ways of handling your home in your upcoming divorce.
Agree to sell the property and fairly split the proceeds
If neither of you wants the home or can afford the property’s mortgage and other expenses on your own, selling the home can be the easiest solution. Each of you walks away with capital that can help you move on and possibly buy a new house.
Allow one spouse to keep the home while compensating the other
Sometimes, one person has more of an attachment to the property than the other. Other times, it may be impossible for either parent to buy or rent a property in the same school district, so keeping the home is crucial for the stability of the children.
Regardless of the motivation, you may find that allowing one spouse to stay in the home and compensate the other for a fair share of the equity accrued in the property is the best approach.
Consider maintaining joint ownership of the property
You may need to be a little more creative with the home in some situations. Maybe you purchased it as a fixer-upper, and you won’t be able to recoup your investment until you’ve spent several more years working on it.
The two of you might agree to cohabitate as roommates or use the home for a birdnesting custody arrangement. You might also decide to hold the property as an investment for your children and rent it out for the foreseeable future.
Depending on how you approach your divorce, having an idea of your preferred outcome for major assets can make it easier to negotiate or litigate your case.