Tips on Purchasing a New Home While You’re Going Through Your Divorce

House after divorce

For many, divorce is not just the end of a marital relationship, but also a departure from the home where they lived for many years. Some divorcing spouses who do not receive possession of the marital home choose to rent an apartment or house while they go through this major transition. However, it often makes financial and practical sense to purchase a new home rather than lease one. 

Like going through a divorce, buying a new place to live involves a complex legal process, but there are ways that you make things easier on yourself if you plan to do both at the same time, such as:

  • Be open and transparent — If you want to take advantage of a real estate opportunity before your marriage is dissolved, your spouse should be well aware of what is happening. Otherwise, they might make a claim to partial ownership of the new residence. 
  • Separate your finances — Most people require a mortgage to complete the purchase of a home. As part of the approval process, the lender will conduct a thorough review of your assets and debts. However, this review should be based on your post-divorce financial status. This might require you to confirm what will happen to the marital home in your divorce and how any amount remaining on the mortgage will be addressed. Use a separate bank account to pay for the down payment and transaction expenses. 
  • Have your spouse execute a quitclaim deed — Even when one spouse’s name is not on a deed, New York law presumes that a property bought by someone who is married is owned by both spouses in what is known as tenancy by the entirety. To avoid this possibility, you should have your soon-to-be ex complete a quitclaim deed declaring that they have no ownership interest in the home you are buying. 

Having a skillful lawyer by your side is critical if you are considering purchasing a new residence individually while your divorce is pending. 

At Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C., our New York attorneys have successfully handled complex and contentious divorces throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties. Whether you’re seriously considering a home purchase or not, we can develop a strategy tailored to your particular needs. Please call 1.631.479.3839 or contact us online to get started. 

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