Divorce is on the rise in America. About 40% to 50% of couples end in divorce. Of all the decisions you’ll have to make and things you’ll have to figure out, how to keep your home after a divorce is a big topic of concern for many. You’ll likely have a few negotiating sessions in which you’ll discuss child custody laws and parent planning, alimony, and assets. If you are set on keeping the family home for yourself, you’ll need to be prepared to negotiate and even pay your ex-spouse for their ownership.
Once you’ve negotiated your way into keeping the home, you’ll want to be prepared to make it your own. There will likely be negative memories of time with your ex-spouse that you’ll want to erase as best you can. You may even want to book a trash removal service to get rid of things that remind you of your ex. Regardless, you’ll want to make some changes to make the home your own and erase any negative memories.
If you’re getting ready to go through the divorce mediation process and will be figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce and how to afterward make it your own, this brief guide will prepare you with what you need to know both during and after the process.
How To Keep Your Home After A Divorce
Negotiating and figuring out financing for keeping your home after a divorce can be a stressful and lengthy process. So grab your favorite cbd infused skin care product, take some time to prepare, and then get ready to buckle down and fight for your home. Here are the things you should consider and will most likely go through as you figure out how to keep your home after a divorce:
The first step to figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce will be to figure out the value of the home. You may want to talk with a real estate lawyer to get an idea of the total price tag for your home’s value. It’s extremely unlikely that your ex-spouse will just hand over the home without wanting to be compensated for their ownership in it. And unless you can prove that you have the money to buy them out, they’ll be unlikely to want to sell to you. It will be well worth it to you to not only figure out the value of the home ahead of time but also do some calculations. Take the value of the home and subtract what is still owed on it. That is the amount of equity. You’ll then divide that between the two of you however you see fit, whether 50/50 or some other number based on responsibilities for payments, ownership prior to marriage, etc.
Once you’ve figured out an estimate for how much you will need to spend to buy out ownership of your home from your ex, you may need to find different ways to finance that purchase. It’s important to remember as you are seeking out options that a single person cannot qualify for as much as a couple would. If you have assets that you know you can negotiate with, you may consider that. For example, if there are multiple cars or a boat that will be negotiated in divorce mediation with a divorce attorney, you could consider giving up ownership of those to cover part of the cost of purchasing ownership of the house. Some other options for getting the funding could be:
- Cashing in on investments
- Selling belongings
- Asking family members for help
- Refinance the home
- Takeout a home equity line of credit
This may also be the time you start to decide whether figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce will be a wise financial decision for you. While holding onto your home in a time where so much is changing may be important to you, plunging yourself into financial peril just do to it could cause more stress and heartache than is necessary. Make sure to talk with someone who is level headed about the details before you make any final decisions or negotiations.
Once you’ve taken time to figure out numbers for your home’s value and ways you can finance the purchase, it’s time to take that information to negotiations. The more prepared you are with facts and information, the better prepared you’ll be when talking with divorce lawyers about estate law and decisions for your assets. If you’re trying to figure out how to keep your home after a divorce, but your ex-spouse also wants to keep the home, your information will especially come in handy. If you can prove that you are more financially prepared to make the purchase, you are more likely to end up with the home.
How To Make Your Home Your Own After A Divorce
Once you’ve gained full possession of your home, it’s time to reclaim it and make it your own. Simply getting rid of old things like your wedding band or pictures may not be enough. You will want to consider redecorating and even making major renovations. Here are some ideas for what you can do to make your home your own after a divorce.
As you are figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce and make it your own, the first room you will want to consider renovating will likely be the bedroom. This will be one of the rooms that surely have the strongest memories of time with your ex, so it will be the first to need revamping. If you’ve just purchased your ex’s portion of the home, you may not have a huge budget to make major renovations. So, here are a few ideas for more budget-friendly changes you can make that will still makeover the space and make it your own:
- DIY: The first thing you could consider is to DIY new furniture and decorations based on what you already have. You may consider using an old piece of leftover wood to make a new headboard. You could also take some old sheets or a tablecloth and make new curtains for the room. Take some time to look around and what you already have and figure out a way to reimagine it.
- New Colors: Another great way to get a big change for a smaller amount of money is to change up the colors in your room. You could repaint the walls or strip the wallpaper and switch it up. If you had darker colors in the room, consider switching to lighter and vice versa. With this revamp you are trying to create a space where you walk in and don’t see what it used to be when you were married. Simple color changes can get you way ahead in that process.
- Change Major Features: If you have a big of money saved that you can use for renovating, you may consider changing up the major features of the room. For example, getting a new bed frame would have a big impact. You may even consider downsizing based on what size you had to make more space in the room and give it a new feel. If you had a big, boldly patterned rug, you may consider selling it and replacing it with something entirely new.
- Repurpose: Another great budget-friendly idea is to repurpose furniture from other rooms in the house. Even switching around the layout of the furniture and decorations you already have could make a big change. A bed frame that you had in a guest room may become the frame you use in your master bedroom. You may trade your nightstands with end tables that were used in a living room. This doesn’t cost any money but can have a big change in the way your room looks and make it more your own.
Another thing to keep in mind as your figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce and make it your own, is that selling your old furniture will give you more funding to purchase new items. If you are feeling melancholy about making the big changes, take the time you need to grieve your loss, but then take steps forward. Holding onto old furniture and old memories won’t get you anywhere but stuck in sadness.
One of the cheapest and quickest ways to make your home your own after a divorce is to change up decorations and pictures, anything that would hold memories with your ex that could be painful. You may work with your family attorney to decide what pieces of furniture or items are going to your ex and which can stay with you. Regardless, changing out decorations that are leftover such as old pictures is a must. The most important thing about renovating your home after a divorce is to get rid of any old or painful memories. Family pictures could be questionable as they have your children as well, so it will change depending on the situation.
Another room that you may consider renovating after a divorce is the kitchen. While a kitchen will not hold as many memories as rooms such as a bedroom or living room, you want to make your kitchen your own space, a place to make new memories with your family. Kitchen renovations also have the bonus of adding great return on investment to your home’s value. There is quite a range of things you can do to makeover your kitchen, from a small budget to a lot of funds. Here are some of the top examples of ways you can renovate your kitchen to make it your own space:
- Similar to the bedroom, you may consider switching the color theme of your kitchen. This could include painting the walls, painting the cabinets, or even changing the colors of towels and rugs. These kinds of changes can also work well on a tight budget.
- If you have more money in your budget, you may consider replacing some of the bigger elements in your kitchen for a bigger impact, such as appliances. If you have older elements, appliance repairs could get items up and running and make them feel new to you.
- You may also consider simply switching up the decorations, changing them out with other items you have in other rooms, and giving the kitchen a fresh new feel. This is a great option for those working on a budget as well.
Because the kitchen is one of the highest traffic rooms in the home, while it may not have a lot of significant memories, it will undoubtedly have memories of your time with your ex. Taking the time to make even minor changes there will help as you are trying to make your home your own after a divorce.
The process of figuring out how to keep your home after a divorce is a long and potentially stressful process. The more you prepare ahead of time as far as financials, the more prepared you’ll be to argue your case that you should be the one to get ownership of the home. Once you have gained full ownership, the next big task is making it your own. Erase any old negative memories you may have by renovating and creating a new beautiful home where you can heal and make new memories. If you follow the previously mentioned suggestions, you’ll be well on your way to making your home your own after a divorce.