When a couple separates, one of the biggest issues to deal with is selling a house after a divorce agreement.
Once arrangements for the futures of any children and other dependents have been finalized, the major problems to be tackled are what to do with your house in a divorce and how to go about divorce and splitting assets at the same time.
The marital home is usually the biggest asset shared between a couple. Sometimes, one party chooses to stay put and ‘buy out’ their former partner’s share.
This is a common solution when children are involved, who would benefit from the stability of staying in their familiar home.
Alternatively, another solution is to sell the property, pay off any mortgage or other debts secured on it and divide the profits to help both parties buy or rent a new place to live elsewhere.
This sale can happen quite quickly after a divorce to facilitate a fresh start, or it can take place a while afterward, for example when the children turn eighteen, or after an agreed event or period of time.
There is also a way to defer the sale of a house or flat in court until one partner dies or remarries. This is known as a Martin order.
If you cannot agree on what to do, a solicitor will be able to talk you through your options and help you come to a mutually acceptable resolution regarding property distribution after divorce.
Who owns what
The decision about who gets to keep the house, or make the final decision as to whether to sell it depends on many things and will differ from couple to couple.
For instance, the ownership of the house or flat can be in one person’s name only, especially if they came into the marriage already owning it.
However, this doesn’t automatically mean that they will get full ownership of the property after a divorce. A court will take many things into account to decide on the most equitable resolution regarding the divorce property division.
If your name is not on the title deeds, you can register your interest in the property with the Land Registry, using a matrimonial home rights notice.
It is very important to know your rights and where you stand regarding property ownership, mortgage arrangements and ability to sell while selling a house after divorce agreement.
Rights around ownership are protected by law to stop one partner forcing the other to leave the home against their will,selling the home without the other’s knowledge or transferring any mortgages or loans without permission.
The Family Law Act of 1996 gives named homeowners the right to stay in their home until everything is settled, unless a court order specifically excludes them, as well as to be notified of any repossession activity being undertaken by your mortgage provider, enable a court to allow a return to the home if you have left it and help avoid repossession if the other party stops paying their share of the mortgage.
Selling a house after divorce agreement
There are many ways you can expedite the sale of a former matrimonial home after divorce. An estate agent will work on your behalf to market the property and attract interest, viewings, and offers.
This may take three to six months to achieve, or even longer, but it has the added advantage of your estate agent knowing how to market your property and show it off to its best advantage, as well as being able to handle the entire sale from start to finish.
Your property solicitor will also be crucial support for selling a house after a divorce agreement.
They can advise you on your legal rights and responsibilities, help you complete all the red tape involved in the sale of the property and offer you guidance on what steps to take next to secure your next house or flat.
You can sell your house after divorce at auction too, either using an estate agent or acting on your own behalf. This can help increase the price, especially if two or more bidders are interested and bid against each other.
Thereby, this can result in a quicker sale; however, you will need to pay a percentage of your eventual selling price to the auctioneer.
Above all, coming away from selling a house after divorce agreement, however, you choose to run it, with enough profits to ensure the ongoing security of any children from the partnership is the most important consideration.
A court will place this requirement at the very top of the priority list and take it very seriously indeed.
The ideal situation would be to provide both former spouses with enough money for each to buy or rent a property to live in, but this will always come second to the welfare of children involved.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Peter is an experienced content creator for multiple niches. He is currently the Content Manager for Ashworths Solicitors (Property Solicitors based in Wimbledon, London). He also has experience in Digital Marketing and SEO and loves creating unique and engaging content for all types of readers!