Deciding where to live both during and following a divorce is an important decision most people don’t think about until a time crunch forces a decision. When you’re make an important decision under pressure, you don’t always make the best decision for yourself and your children, either for now or for the future.
There are three choices you have: staying in your current home, buying a new place, or renting. Here are the pros and cons for each:
Staying in your home. If you still have children living in the home, the thought of adding further disruption to their lives by moving to a different place can incline you to stay put. There is real value to keeping this part of their lives stable while everything else around them is changing. You may also have close friends living nearby who can offer you important support during a divorce. When make the decision of whether to stay or go, financial considerations should play a big role in your decision. You should have a firm handle on the costs of remaining in your home — not only mortgage, utilities, and insurance payments, but ongoing maintenance and any major repairs that may need to be done in the near future. If one spouse elects to stay in the home and will be assuming the mortgage following the divorce, the staying spouse needs to have sufficient cash flow to qualify for the mortgage. You can always elect to continue owning the home jointly; just be sure you can trust your ex to hold up their part of the bargain in sharing the costs after the divorce is final.
Purchasing a new home. Moving to a new place can be just the fresh start you want after a divorce, especially if your children are grown and you are seeking a new lifestyle for your future. If you have a lot of equity in your old home and the real estate market conditions are right, you could wind up in better financial shape by moving. On the other hand, there are several upfront costs to bear when you buy a new home, so be sure you figure those in when doing your financial analysis. You should also check your credit score and debt to income ratio to be sure you can qualify for a new mortgage.
Renting. Divorce is a time of great change and emotions run high, which means that it may not be the best time for you to be making a long-term living decision. This is where renting can be an advantage. By renting, you give yourself more flexibility to make a more thorough assessment of your housing needs for the long-term. Renting can also free up needed cash during a divorce. And it’s a good alternative if you can’t afford a new house in your children’s school district but want to stay there.
At Cistaro Law, we are not only concerned with your divorce today, but also with your quality of life long after your case is over. Your family law issues deserve to be managed with dignity and respect. You can prepare to civilly resolve your divorce, heal, and move on with your life with a legal team that has helped individuals all over New Jersey to heal and prosper. Contact us today for your free consultation.