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Missouri couples need to consider property division carefully

The decision about whether to keep a family home after a divorce can be one of the most complicated decisions a couple has to make. Those pursuing divorce in Missouri need to weigh the pros and cons of keeping their homes. Both parties should be aware of the financial ramifications of all the actions they take regarding property division.

Often, spouses sell their home and split the equity as part of their property division agreement. However, if one party wants to stay in the home, that person may have to pursue a mortgage in his or her own name. That party first needs to qualify for a mortgage or make arrangements with the other spouse to help financially.

The fate of the mortgage does not only affect the person who wants to keep the home. The spouse who is leaving the home may have to seek a mortgage on his or her own for a new place. If that person has agreed to help the party who stayed in the home and is still on a shared mortgage, any missed payments can affect that person's credit and ability to buy a new house.

Both parties in a Missouri divorce need to be clear about how property division will impact them individually. Staying in a house on one's own may be good in theory, but moving on to a new home may be more beneficial. Before any decisions are made, each person needs to know the short- and long-term costs of property-related decisions. 


Source: The New York Times, "Divorce and the Shared Mortgage", Lisa Prevost, Oct. 30, 2015

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