Are you getting divorced? Do you own real estate with your spouse? There are several things to consider when filing for divorce. You might be wondering who will get the house, or how you can best divide real estate assets if you own real estate investments, etc. Legal Counsel, P.A. is a real estate law firm in Orlando, Florida that may be able to assist you.

One of the most important distinctions you’ll need to make when considering real estate in your divorce is distinguishing marital assets from separate assets. Everything you own doesn’t automatically belong to your spouse the day you get married. If you have a prenuptial agreement in place, this could also play a role in how real estate is divided in a divorce.

Planning to get divorced? Have questions about your rights and real estate? Speak to Legal Counsel, P.A., a divorce lawyer in Orlando, Florida today.

Is the Real Estate Separate Property or Marital Property?

When dividing real estate in your divorce, you and your spouse will need to determine what property is martial property and what property is separate, non-marital property. While this might seem as straightforward as differentiating property purchased after the marriage from property purchased before the marriage, this is not always so simple. How so?

In most cases, if you purchased a home or property before you were married, the property might be considered separate property. However, if you and your partner lived in the home after you were married, if you received income from the property as a married couple, or if you and your partner made improvements to the property that resulted in an increase in value, the property might be considered marital property. Individuals who own real estate upon entering a marriage, particularly if the real estate is for investment purposes, might be wise to either draft a clear prenuptial agreement before marrying or clearly hold title in such a way that shows that only one person is the owner and beneficiary of the property rights.

If you and your partner purchased a home after you got married, the home will generally be considered marital property, and is subject to division of property laws in your divorce. This is where dividing these assets can get tricky, especially if both parties want to keep the house. However, couples often work together to find a resolution that works for everyone.

Still having trouble differentiating marital real estate from separate real estate in your divorce? Legal Counsel, P.A. is a real estate attorney that can review your documentation and assist you with this process. Contact our real estate lawyer today to learn more.

Dividing Real Estate During a Divorce

Real estate that is considered marital property will need to be divided during your divorce. If you own investment property in addition to your marital home, it might be possible to get appraisals of the property and then divide the property equally or equitably between both spouses. Some couples choose to divide property 50-50, while others might take into account each partner’s contribution. However, if you own only one home, you may need to make decisions about how the property will be handled in your divorce. Some couples evaluate each party’s contribution to the purchase of the home, and divide equity in this manner, while others split their equity 50-50.

Once you determine what share of the home each of you owns, you’ll need to decide what to do. The simplest choice may be to just sell the home and split the proceeds. But sometimes, due to emotional reasons or for practical reasons (the housing market is down), this might not be possible. In this case, sometimes one partner will “buy out” the other partner’s share in the home. Sometimes, other assets can be negotiated for the house, and in the divorce proceedings one partner may simply pass title to his or her spouse. At the end of the day, if one partner is planning to keep the home, the partner keeping the home should carefully assess whether the home is affordable on a single budget. Consider things like the mortgage (which may need to be refinanced in a single person’s name), taxes, and other issues like repairs, when deciding whether to keep the family home on your own. Many individuals do the math and find that they are better off selling the home and downsizing, though this is not always the case.

Other couples share ownership of the home after divorce. In this case, the children may remain in the home, and both parties “move in” during parenting time. If you have a positive relationship with your ex, this might be another alternative. Legal Counsel, P.A. is a real estate law firm in Orlando, Florida that can walk you through the various options you might have for real estate in your divorce and assist you with the legal paperwork involved in dividing these assets. The real estate attorney at Legal Counsel, P.A. can help you.  Have questions?  We have answers.  Contact Legal Counsel, P.A. today at 407-982-4321.

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