If you’re going through a divorce, you will already be familiar with the number of difficult decisions you have to make. From initial living arrangements to who gets what, it’s an emotional time and few subjects are as sensitive as your old family home.

Once you’ve decided to sell and move on with your life, another obstacle presents itself in the form of when you should sell. Should you consider a sale before you’re divorced or should you wait until after you’re officially separated?

While your situation is unique to you, here’s a quick look at some pros and cons of selling your home before or after you become divorced.

Selling Before Divorce

By selling your marital home before divorce, rather than making it part of an agreement or dispute, you are able to do it on your own terms. That means once a sale goes through, you can split the money in half (or otherwise if agreed) and walk away. No weighing up other assets or haggling, just a clean break. This does however require you to be on decent terms.

Getting the sale done early is an excellent way to help put the past behind you. With your share of the cash secured, you should be able to find a new place or at least be financially independent for a while. As well as the obvious financial benefit of getting your share of the house quickly, the emotional positives are hard to ignore. With your old home out of the way, you and your partner have a clean slate and one less tie..

The main drawback to committing to a sale before you divorce is the unpredictable nature of the property market. A sale can take a while, particularly if you are involved in a chain, it requires you and your partner to be on the same page and could even delay the finalisation of your divorce.

On the other hand, if you are able to receive a reasonable price, however you define that, selling before completing your divorce can bring a quick resolution to a potentially difficult situation.

Selling After Divorce

To even consider selling your home after divorce, you’ll both need to reach an understanding about who owns the property and how your combined assets should be split. Providing you can reach this position, there are some positives to holding out for a sale once you’re both single.

Deciding to sell following your divorce delays one complicated aspect of the separation. While some discussion will be required to secure the interests of both parties, leaving the house sale until the dust has settled can take some stress out of the situation and buy you both time to weigh up your best options. Alongside this, it also gives at least one of you somewhere to stay—providing either of you are happy to do so.

Whereas a sale before divorce is usually hurried, waiting until afterwards opens up the potential to be patient. Property is usually a sound investment and over time the value of your home could increase. As long as the legal agreement protects both of your interests, you could both get more cash as a result of waiting for a sale. However, how long this could take is far from certain and your old house could easily loom over you for longer than you’d like.

 


When it comes to it, the pros and cons are primarily tied to how quickly you would like the money, whether you have somewhere else to stay and your emotional state. If everything is above board, when the sale takes place should purely be a matter of preference for you and your former partner. Whether you should go for a quick fire sale or take a little longer is entirely up to you and ultimately depends on your circumstance and the property market.

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