You and your soon-to-be ex prefer to sell your home and pursue a fresh start. Making this decision is the easy part; now you need to deal with the usual complications of selling real estate, all while under the strain of divorce. Keep the process as simple and stress-free as possible by following these basic do’s and don’ts:
Do: Work With a Trusted Realtor
Under absolutely no circumstances should you and your spouse attempt to sell your house without the assistance of a realtor or real estate lawyer. Sales by owner are complicated in the best of times — and they’re a nightmare in the midst of divorce. The small fee you pay for a qualified realtor is well worth the money.
Don’t: Choose a Realtor With Close Ties to Either Spouse
As a married couple, you may have hired a friend or family member as your realtor. Divorcing spouses, however, require a neutral third party to communicate openly and honestly with both spouses, as well as their lawyers or mediators.
Don’t: Get Caught Up In Emotions
Your house holds a myriad of memories, good and bad. Unfortunately, the emotions attached to those memories can cloud your thinking during this sensitive time. Remember, your home’s sale is purely a financial matter; memories of happier times bear little on the true valuation of the property.
Do: Stage to Create the Illusion of a Happy Family
As you stage showings for prospective buyers, your home should not scream divorcing couple. Buyers will assume that you are desperate to sell — and they’ll be more inclined to present lowball offers. Obvious signs of a pending divorce include half-empty bedroom closets and homes clearly split down the middle, War of the Roses style. Continue living separately if necessary, but arrange your belongings to reflect buyers’ expectations.
Don’t: Fall Behind on Mortgage Payments
In the confusion of divorce, spouses often fail to take care or their bills, including mortgage payments. A single missed or late payment can have a devastating impact on your credit, so keep up with your mortgage as you await the sale of your marital home.
Struggling with the complexities of real estate sales in the midst of your Washington, D.C. divorce? Turn to DiPietro Family Law Group for assistance with the financial complications of divorce.