Divorce under any circumstance is tough. When a couple calls it quits, one of the concerns they’ll have is what each party will walk out of the marriage with. Specifically, ownership of the family home can be heavily contested.
While you may be inclined to fight for the marital home, it is important to have a clear understanding of what this means. Here are key questions you need to ask while fighting to keep the marital home:
Can you afford it?
Owning a home comes with its price tag. You have to purchase home insurance, pay property taxes and occasionally spend money on home maintenance among other costs. While you were living together with your spouse, you probably shared these costs. But can you afford them when you are on your own?
Besides the recurrent bills, there is a pretty good chance your spouse had equity in the home. Can you buy them out?
If you cannot afford these costs, you are better off opting for an alternate disposition for the marital property.
How long do you plan to stay in the home after the divorce?
Fighting to keep the marital home would make sense if you have the capacity to buy out your ex’s equity in the home. If your plan is to live in the home for a limited period of time, however, then fighting for the home might not be a great idea.
The court will generally be open to the idea of letting the custodial parent reside in the marital home for a while even if that parent lacks the finances to buy out their ex’s equity.
Protecting your interests
The decision to fight for the marital home comes down to a number of factors. Understanding Virginia’s divorce laws can help you to make an informed decision when determining whether to fight for the marital home or not.