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How Can I Get My Home Valued During a Divorce?

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How Can I Get My Home Valued During a Divorce?
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There is no denying the significant toll that divorce and separation takes on our emotions. However, amidst all of this, it is easy to forget the challenging financial and legal issues that come with it. For lots of married couples, the largest asset involved in a divorce is the family home and there is no ‘one size fits all’ method as to how property is handled.

If you have children under the age of 18 with your ex-partner, then their wellbeing will also undoubtedly be a top priority for you and may be a factor in the decisions you make.

So, during this extremely difficult period, there is no doubt that you will want clarity on some very important questions: what happens to my house during a divorce? Can my ex-partner sell our house? And how can I get the property valued during a divorce? Keep reading our blog below for guidance on all of these areas.

What happens to my house during a divorce?

When you are selling a house after a divorce, the fate of your home is entirely up to you and your partner. The outcome can therefore vary significantly, depending on how amicable the divorce has been.

Ideally, a solicitor will help you and your ex-partner to find a solution which you are both comfortable with. This might involve one of you buying the other person out, selling it and splitting the profits, or any other number of different solutions.

However, if you are not on good terms with your ex-partner and there is a lot of conflict, you will need to consult legal professionals and outline the circumstances. These experts will be able to guide you on the best course of action and represent you to ensure that a fair settlement is reached.

Is it possible for my ex-partner to sell our house?

While your ex-partner may threaten to take certain actions about your home, they cannot do so unless it is legally sound. For example, until a divorce is finalised, you should both legally have the right to remain there, and any threats from your ex-partner to ‘force you out’ are unlikely to be legally legitimate.

Once a divorce has been granted, the terms of the divorce (if there was a settlement) will impact what it or isn’t possible moving forwards. You should speak with your solicitor to clearly understand the terms.

If there are children under the age of 18 living in the property, then most legal bodies will grant the remaining parent the right to live there. However, exes will be considered and sometimes (especially if there are no children involved) selling up is the fairer option so that you can both benefit from the capital.

How can I get my home valued during a divorce?

Getting your property valued during a divorce is not always straightforward. The circumstances surrounding your divorce (such as how amicable it has been) will impact which steps need to be taken.

As a general rule, it is recommended that any valuations you pay for are made by independent experts, rather than estate agents. This is because estate agents can sometimes overestimate so you are more likely to select them.

If the process of valuing your home goes to court, then there will typically be hearings to determine how the home valuation is carried out. If you and your ex-partner agree on the value of the property, then this can be used as the agreed valuation, and there is no dispute. However, if you disagree, then the court can order a valuation by an independent surveyor.

In the process of getting your house valued, consideration may also need to be given to any additional properties that you own. These might include a holiday home; any Buy to Let properties you own; any properties owned by a family company; or any house held within a pension fund.

By being intelligent about how you get your house valued during a divorce, it can ensure that you get the maximum asking price.

Can I buy my ex out of a mortgage?

Yes, it is possible to buy your ex out of a mortgage. If your ex doesn’t want to continue paying their half for whatever reason, it makes more sense for you to buy them out, especially if you are the one continuing to stay in the property. When you buy out a partner in a mortgage, you take on their share of the mortgage while buying their share out at the same time. 

Is it possible for an unmarried partner to claim the house?

If you are going through a separation, but not a divorce, then the process of ‘claiming the house’ can be more complicated.

An unmarried partner that is not one of the owners wouldn’t be able to claim a property outright. However, in some circumstances, they are able to claim a share of the property, but this will depend on how much they contributed, and for how long.

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