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Sell your House Before or After Divorce

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  • divorce, house sales, selling your house
  • Posted date:
  • 22-07-2021
Sell your House Before or After Divorce

Should I Sell your House Before or After Divorce?

Read more about whether you should Sell your House Before or After Divorce. Kent Property Witness offer RICS expert witness surveyor services for Tonbridge and Kent. We look at what you need to do with the family home following a divorce. 

What will happen to our house during a divorce?

For couples who are beginning to separate, asking what will happen to the home you share is essential during the divorce. Although the answer can depend on circumstances on the legal side and other things, what happens in your home is usually decided between the two homeowners (this decision can sometimes include the assistance of a solicitor).

If you want to ensure all parts of your separation are attended to, you must have constant and good communication between the two sides. Although what happens with the assets are generally up to the two parties, if no conclusion has been confirmed, a legal professional may have to step in to ensure any results are fair for both sides.

If children from this marriage are currently under 18 (legal adult), the court will consider their welfare before anything else. This can also happen even if the property is solely owned by one of the divorcees, as the children must be taken care of in any circumstance.

Whether you can understand the sale of your property or not is essential, but you can apply for the court to supply a financial remedy if you cannot. For the court to impose a financial remedy, they will use the following as a basis for the results:

The age of you and your ex-partner at the time of your divorce.

Who is the care provider for any children you have under the age of 18?

Are all the needs for the children being met by the current party taking care of them?

Were there any external factors that caused or contributed towards the divorce (this includes alcohol, violence or the abuse of substances)?

How long were you and your ex-partner married?

What are the annual earnings, financial background, and debt levels for each party involved in this divorce?

Is there evidence that shows either party has made a financial contribution towards the property in question?


In theory, it is better to come to a resolution over your marital home/property with your ex-partner without the assistance of a court. You should avoid court unless you are certain your case is strong so you can keep your property and prove you also have the financial ability to do so.

If you sell the house, you require permission from your ex-partner unless the court has stated otherwise and split the sale money equally with them. You cannot sell the house without your ex-partner's permission or transfer the title/ownership of the property to someone else.


Can my ex-partner sell our marital home when I'm not present in it?

For couples who are going through a divorce, there are some questions that you may be asking or have been threatened by and are unsure whether they can go through, such as "Can my ex-partner sell my house without my consent?". There have been some situations where someone is being threatened by their ex-partner and stating they are trying to sell the property or making you move out.  If you are in this situation, you should understand that they don't have the legal ability to do so. This can be the case unless a judge has made a ruling otherwise or if the divorce has been finalized. 

Also, there may be a case where there have been circumstances that involve the law that is requesting one party to leave home. If the statements above have not been made, neither party can force the other to leave or sell the property.   

In some circumstances, one person may leave and start a new relationship with someone else. If this is the case and they have left their children with the other partner, then the judge may rule that they can stay in the property with the children. This home would have been the family home, so ensuring the family have somewhere to stay after the divorce is important.  

The law is considered to be somewhat fair, and in most circumstances, the judge may suggest the property get sold, and the money is shared equally between the ex-partners.   

 When discussing a house in a divorce, this is generally for both parties, and neither one can assume full control without proof and a good reason to do so. The courts also place the children's needs into consideration and before anyone else's needs. 

This is usually to ensure their lives are not drastically affected by the divorce any more than they already are. This also means neither party can sell or transfer the title to another buyer without the notification and consent of both parties involved. 

After selling the home, the financial benefits from the sold home will be divided equally between the two parties to provide financial backing for their new lives. Dividing the properties sale price ensures both parties get their equal pay and can get back on with their lives freely.

The Pro's for Selling your House Before Divorce

There are three major pros to selling your home before a divorce;

If you have decided on selling your property before the divorce, this will give you the chance of agreeing between the two of you where the assets are going and how they will be split up. Not deciding upon where the assets will be going can cause arguments and disagreements and leave it even longer.

Once the sale for your home has been finalized, the money from this sale can be split between the two parties as previously agreed upon, but this does require both sides to be on talking terms and sit down and talk over any issues or disagreements. Once the revenue has been split between the parties without disputes, you can go your own way.

After a divorce, you may find yourself having a few money issues, having your home sold before your divorce can be helpful with a bit of extra money for starting a new life. 

A divorce can be a major event in your life, so you may want to take some time off work, and the money could be used to support you in this if needed. On the other hand, this could also be good if you want to invest in new projects or companies to make some profits later.

Although there may be reasons for you having a divorce, you once had feelings for your ex-partner and selling your home could be the perfect way of burying the hatchet with your ex-partner and moving on with your life as well soon as possible. 

Having both good and bad memories in the house is normal, but getting rid of your home will help make it final so you can move on properly.


The Con's for Selling your House Before Divorce

Just like the pros, there are also some cons to selling your house before a divorce;


As you may know, the property markets here in the UK are rather unpredictable at the best of times. Deciding to sell is an important part that many divorcees consider, but this can also cause some issues. 

Because of the unpredictability of the market, you could be looking at a long wait time for your house to be sold, which can lead to more complications down the road if it takes too long.

In many circumstances, divorcees looking for selling their homes before their divorce is finalized are looking for this to be done fast so that their lives can get back on track. 

Though it may not seem like it at the time, this option is not the best choice to make. Many people make rash actions while having a divorce as they can be physically and mentally draining, but some of these decisions can cost you financially.

The gap in the market value can sometimes be a large or small sum, depending on a few factors. Still, the market value of your family home is significant when selling, so you can get the most out of the property and have some financial backing when starting your new life.

Having estate agents provide good prices for your home is good to get an idea of what you would expect from your home sale.

What happens if we are in a joint mortgage and going through a divorce?

As you might have thought, having a joint mortgage with someone while you are going through a divorce can make things much more complicated. Regardless of the reasons, the mortgage will need to be paid by one or both of the parties involved, and if there are any changes in these terms, you will need to inform your mortgage lender of your situation. 

As your mortgage will most likely be joint, both you and your ex-partner are responsible for the debt. Not paying for your joint mortgage will result in repercussions such as repossession, and there will be some damage to your credit files.

When couples go through a divorce and have a joint mortgage, this can usually mean trouble for those involved. There are a few options for them to consider in this situation:

Is it possible for one person to take over the mortgage debt? Bear in mind that you will need to have a high enough income to qualify for the lending criteria. 

Is it possible for you to sell your property and split the profits?

Is there a possibility of renting out your property and using the profits from the rental and sharing them?  

These things are all to remember if you are going through a divorce and have a joint mortgage. Ensure you talk to your mortgage provider first and discuss these options with them. 

Some mortgage lenders offer flexible options to you, such as mortgage holidays where you can have a short break from payments, so you have some breathing room during this time.


Are you looking for advice about property valuation for divorce? Contact us at Kent Property Witness and give us a call about any information or advice about property assessments. 

If you are looking for advice in Tonbridge and Kent get in contact today. Our RICS expert witnesses property surveyor can offer the best services.