19 responses

  1. Sam
    May 26, 2014

    I have a question on real estate property, my husband bought the house before we got married, now we are divorcing and we stayed in the house for 7 years but my name is not on the deed. I did not work entire time we’re together, I’m a stay at home mom. Will I be getting anything when he sell the house?

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      May 27, 2014

      What happens in divorce depends on the laws of your state, so you should ask your attorney this question.

      Reply

  2. Mary Rotondo
    May 28, 2014

    Married 5 years my husband had a hiuse already I sold mine put all 26, 000 into it with in ground pool I figure I would be there for a long time I cooked and used my money to feed everyone my twi biys too I bought landscape plants that cist 1000. And mortgage money have name on deed he wants out but he told me he aint giving me a penny he ssid thst is rent money I live in mi

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      May 29, 2014

      You may be able to recoup the money you put into his house, but each state is different. I don’t know the laws in Michigan, and I’m guessing that you don’t either, so you’ll need to consult with an attorney in your area to find out the answers to these questions.

      Reply

  3. JenB
    November 8, 2014

    My husband and I are contemplating separation/divorce after 9.5 years. It is an amicable divorce, our finances are basically already separate and we would just go our separate ways financially. We bought our condo in 2005 prior to the real estate crisis. Although prices are improving, we continue to be underwater and would need to short sale if we both move. I am considering staying, he is willing to let me have the condo. I have been paying the mortgage/dues/taxes solely since 2009 and also contributed the larger portion of our down-payment. But because I have considerable student loan debt, I’m not sure if I will qualify for a refinance by myself. What suggestions would you make? Thank you for your time!

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      November 9, 2014

      First of all, delay finalizing your divorce until you have hit the ten-year mark, so that you can qualify for social security benefits based on his record, when you reach retirement. If you take the condo and make mortgage payments, the principal you receive each month doesn’t build equity, it just reduces the negative equity you have in the home. Zero is zero, so in reality this is similar to renting, but this time from the mortgage company instead of a landlord. So make sure keeping the condo is a sound financial decision that will put you ahead in five years, which is a reasonable time to hold the investment, compared to renting. I don’t know if you’ll qualify for a refinance — that is a question for a mortgage broker. It’s likely you won’t qualify, even with a co-signer, since your home has no equity, so your husband would have to stay on the mortgage until such time in the future as you can refinance. If he won’t do that, then you’ll have to do the short sale.

      Reply

  4. Cynthia Galvan
    October 11, 2015

    question: Married for 30 yrs. The house that we live in the morgage is about the same as a rental of a one bedroom apartment and I have two teen daughters. I live in the state of Florida. Just trying to figure out how I can keep my home and what advise can you give me?

    Thank you,

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      October 12, 2015

      It sounds as though you will be going through a divorce. If you need to pay your husband for his equity in the home, there are three ways to do it: give him other assets (such as retirement accounts), refinance the home (which will raise your payment), or sell the home and live somewhere else (in which case your payment will remain the same and you’ll have some cash from selling the home). If you decide to trade away your interest in retirement assets, be sure that you will have the ability to re-generate those assets between now and retirement age, when you’ll need retirement income.

      Reply

  5. maria
    December 11, 2015

    my husband and are separate but he leave with me and pay 1/4 of the mortgage I am almost done paying off the house can he sale the house without me if I am not in the country. (after I finish paying)

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      December 11, 2015

      If both names are on the deed to the house, he should not be able to legally sell the house without your signature, no matter where you are and whether there is a mortgage on it or not.

      Reply

  6. Jeanne
    March 9, 2016

    My husband (of 17 years) and I are considering a separation and possible divorce, we’re not sure, just going through personal changes. He wants to buy some property as extra income & a potential future residence. We have a 20 year refinanced mortgage that will be paid off in about 9 years. Neither one of us could afford the mortgage payment alone and rents are extremely high here in western Washington. Should we, as he suggests refinance for a 30 year loan to put $ down on an investment property until we know for sure that we want to divorce or have me keep the house and get a roommate until it’s paid off??
    I’m just 6 years away from planned retirement and don’t want another 30 year mortgage and can’t afford rent.

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      March 10, 2016

      If you separate and there’s a big mortgage on the house, then whoever takes the house takes the mortgage, even though part of the funds went to purchase other property. If that makes keeping the house unaffordable, that would be a problem. I suggest that you consult with a financial planner who can help you assess whether borrowing even more money will benefit you in the long run, especially given your marital situation.

      Reply

    • Martha Marquez
      April 1, 2017

      My question is my husband has been receiving retirement benefits since 2007, we separated in August 2010, he served me divorce papers in June 2014. He went after my reyirements and recd 1 slump sum from my THRIFT SAVINGS in Dec 2014. I did not receive his retirement benefits till April 2016 & was only paid for March & April of 2016. I was told per QDRO atty I was suppose to receive back pay from date I was served. My X owes me $12,000 of back pay, he wanted to pay me $8,000.00 my portion was not up for nogotioation. Divorce was finalized June of 1015, here we are April 2017 and he has not paid me my back pay, he says he does not owe me money. I disagree, he took half of most of my retirements, now I still have one left where I intent to deduct what he owes me. What do I need to do to finish this nightmare, I want him out of my life completely, he causes me too much stress. Please advise what I need to do to complete this once and for all!!!!

      Reply

      • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
        April 2, 2017

        That is a great question to ask your attorney, who can advise you about what you can do under the laws of your state.

        Reply

  7. Tiffany
    April 1, 2016

    My husband, of almost 10 years, and I are divorcing. We bought a home 2.5 years ago and know the we have very little equity in it right now. We are both willing to rent it and let it “ripen” a bit more before selling it. Is it possible to divorce and not sell the house, or put it under only one of our names? How will that work when it comes to filing taxes once we are divorced? How will all of that need to be filed, if it is at all possible?

    Reply

    • Tiffany
      April 1, 2016

      I have the good credit score and he has the money to pay the note. I wouldn’t be able to put it under my name due to lack of funds, and if we changed the mortgage over to his name only then there is no way he would get the great rate that we received when purchasing the home. The divorce is very amicable and I know that he would not wrong me because he is military and we have a child and he knows that it will ultimately affect our son. We just don’t know if its even something that we could work out, legally.

      Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      April 2, 2016

      You can agree in your divorce agreement to hold it jointly, and you should specify the terms (who makes the payments if not covered by rents), who pays for extraordinary expenses (e.g., new roof), what triggers the sale, etc. But be careful — to claim a $250,000 exemption from tax on the gain when you sell, you have to have lived there for 2 of the 5 years prior to sale, so you really should sell it within 3 years of moving out.

      Reply

  8. Theresa Caballero
    November 19, 2017

    I live in California, was married and now divorced, both of us worked. He wanted a portion of my retirement benefit so we settled for 25%. I thought I agreed to 25% of what I had in my account up through the day of the divorce but when I read the decree again recently it says “25% of the entire value at the time of her retirement.” So now I’m kicking myself because I didn’t fully comprehend what I agreed to. For some reason I thought he would get 25% up to the date of the divorce. Is there anyway to challenge this now especially since he has not paid me my portion of the community interest on his retirement plan, which isn’t much but none-the-less it is something.

    Reply

    • Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®
      November 20, 2017

      Talk to an attorney about this matter right away.

      Reply

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