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It happens to us all. The family has grown larger than you planned or your child has completed post secondary out of town and has decided to move back home. You’re planning for your big wedding day and realize that it also includes now consolidating your living arrangement. Unfortunately, there are also the moments in life that we thought would never happen to us. Divorce is one of those instances or worse, the untimely passing of your life partner. These are all things that we may deal with at some point or another, but what do we do? The one thing that usually comes to mind is, “ it time to sell my home?”


This situation happens to most couples who plan for it or not. One moment you’re enjoying your one bedroom apartment and next, you realize that the space you currently have is not going to accommodate the new addition to your life. This can also happen to couples who may have a three bedroom two storey whom are beginning to feel the squeeze between their four walls as their once toddlers are becoming teenagers. You may also get to that point in your life where you may want your parents to live with you, in their own personal suite.
It's now you and your spouse alone in the home where you raised your family.  Now you're begining to realize that the extra space you once needed is no longer neccesary, and too much to clean!  This is the point where you maybe considering the infamous "Down Sizing".

Divorce is a tough situation that opens up many emotional and financial issues that have to be solved. One of the most important decisions is what to do with the house.

The first decision is whether you want to continue living in the house. Will the familiar surroundings bring you comfort and emotional security or unpleasant memories? Do you want to minimize change by staying where you are or sell your home and move to a new place that offers a new start? Can you manage the old house on your new budget? Is refinancing possible or is it better to sell and buy another home? How much house can you buy on your new budget?

Sell the House Now and Divide Up the Proceeds…

Your primary consideration under these circumstances is to maximize your home’s selling price. We can help you avoid the common mistakes most homeowners make that compromise this outcome. As you work to get your financial affairs in order, make sure you understand what your net proceeds will be – i.e. after selling expenses and after determining what your split of the proceeds will be. Note that the split may not be 50/50 but rather it may depend on the divorce settlement, the source of the original down payment and the legislative property laws in your area.
Buy Out Your Spouse…
If you intend to keep the house for yourself, you’ll have to determine how you’ll continue to meet your monthly financial obligations if you now only have one salary. If you used two incomes to qualify for the original mortgage, re-financing on your own might be a challenge.
Have Your Spouse Buy You Out…

If you are the one who is leaving, you have the opportunity to start again in new surroundings with cash in your pocket However, be aware that if the old home loan is not re-financed, most lenders will consider both you and your spouse as original co-signers who are liable for the mortgage. This liability may make qualifying for a new mortgage difficult if you decide to purchase a home, even though you won’t have legal ownership of the previous home.

If you and your spouse decide to sell your home, it will be important to work together through a professional to maximize your return. Differences aside, you both should be present when a listing contract is completed. Both of you should understand and sign this contract, and both should be active in the ultimate negotiations.