When you plan to divorce, one of your most important initial decisions is where both of you will live as you move through the process. What if you both want to stay in your home? What if you have children? Who will remain at home with the kids during the divorce?
Before you make any major decisions, think about all your options with the following questions.
Who Will Live in the Marital Home?
In many cases, one spouse will remain in the marital home while the other moves out. The choice as to who has to move is difficult for many couples. The home you own together is your largest asset. Leaving can feel like you are forced out of something you have worked for, which is frustrating and adds tension to an already tense situation.
Keep in mind, however, the final decision as to who will get the house in the divorce is not absolute until the judge decides. Just because you leave the home does not mean you will not get to live there ever again.
In the meantime, who will live in the house? First, consider who actually owns the home. Did you or your spouse own the house before marriage? Secondly, you have to be able to afford the home and all the expenses that go with it.
Another factor to consider is who will stay with the kids. The kids will already have to deal with the complications of the divorce, so staying in their own home is best if possible. The parent who will be their primary caregiver will need to stay in the home with them.
Can You Both Live in the Marital Home?
Although rare, some couples choose to live in the marital home at the same time as the divorce process moves forward. You could have different reasons why you may want to consider this option.
If you have a family, both parents having a presence in the home is healthy for the children, as long as you both are able to remain amicable. With both of you in the home in a roommate situation instead of a couple allows your children to become acclimated to how things will be once the divorce is final. You both can also continue your normal activities with your children without interrupting their routine.
You may also want to both live in the home together to save money. If one person leaves the home, both will have an increase in expenses. While one of you will have to take on the house expenses, the other will have to secure a new place to live and incur all the expenses with it. However, by living in the same home, you can both benefit from this living situation as long as you can remain cordial.
What If Neither Can Afford the Home?
Neither spouse is capable of paying for the home in many cases. If you face this situation, you will both need to carefully weigh your options, one of which needs to be the sale of the home. Although difficult, this is a viable option when you know neither of you are able to keep the home expenses afloat on your own.
When you put your home on the market, one or both of you can still live in the house before the sale. You will both need to come to an agreement, along with your attorneys, as to how to handle this sort of situation. If one of you earns more money, you may have to contribute to the expenses of the home until you sell it, even if you don't live there.
If you need help with your living situation while going through your divorce, please contact Paul A. Meding Attorney at Law.