The Covid-19 pandemic has caused a lot of death and destruction in our world, and it has created many problems for everyone, especially the overwhelming burden on family finances, job losses and business losses. Unfortunately, this, in turn, has created an environment conducive to an increase in divorce rates. If someone has title to a primary home or investment property, it can be a very tricky and difficult situation to negotiate if civil in nature, which is not usually the case or the norm, as to how ownership will be divided or potentially sold.
Most importantly, when young, young or adolescent children are involved, the stress and anxiety that is created about whether the living environment will be stable or the move will unfortunately shake the ground for everyone in the final settlement. The other day I got a call from a new client who is in the process of divorce, whose identity and location will remain secret. There was a debate about whether he would stay and refinance to pay his future ex-wife her share, or sell the house at all.
It is an unfortunate situation in which many, many families are going through the process, but the pandemic has made life much more frustrating and difficult to manage. This is especially true due to the financial hardships associated with the loss of jobs and businesses, especially in the restaurant sector, where 50 percent closed in New York. This only made life worse and made life worse at home. Couples struggle and, unfortunately, divorce rears its ugly head when the situation cannot be reconciled, negotiated and resolved.
Real estate, whether your primary residence or investment property, should be handled through matrimonial attorneys, who must deal with these matters in the most appropriate and considerate manner. However, there are always two lawyers who represent the interests of their clients; and here some difficulties and log jams begin. They bill on an hourly basis, and this can obviously get very expensive – sometimes between $ 50,000 and $ 200,000 or more – depending on the length of time, financial assets, and the complexities and unreasonable expectations of both parties that arise from one … up to three years or even longer, which may be required for authorization.
I am very sad and disturbing to hear the stories of friends, acquaintances and especially clients about how the fair distribution of real estate and assets becomes extremely difficult when people cannot agree on terms. I believe that when it comes to children, couples should focus on their most important and important interests, and not so much on their own. How will moving out of their current home affect them mentally, physically and socially? Stability and courtesy are central to play, and while most couples find it very difficult and difficult to understand and deal with at times, it is imperative to minimize the impact on children.
I know and understand what is easier said than done; but it can be achieved if a little common sense (which is not always the case with fighting couples) and logic prevails and comes into play. Selling a home when you have lived there for many years or even for a short period is a very discouraging, difficult, heartbreaking and depressing situation that you will have to deal with. Figuring out all the pros and cons of deciding who will stay and who will leave is probably the most impossible task to make your whole head aware.
Again, if you have children, the focus should be on their well-being and stability, which will be most influenced by the decisions both parents make when settling divorce. However, many couples overlook what is truly the most important, safe and stable environment for their children, but end up in controversy and disagreement. When all is said and done, we only have our children now, and when we leave, their position and well-being should be # 1 on your list today.
In determining whether you or your spouse will sell or stay, hiring a competent, knowledgeable, experienced, and caring broker will go a long way not only in assisting both parties in the process, but also in potential problem solving. As a broker, many times I find myself keeping the peace, minimizing nervousness and stress, and becoming an advocate for both sides, not just one.
By law, if a house is registered in both names, both parties are allowed to hire two brokers to sell the entire property. I have been involved in many divorce proceedings in the sale of homes and investment properties, and I have been very successful in acting as an intermediary or, as some would say, a level-headed arbiter, so that the parties stay balanced and allow politeness to be curbed. Divorce can be very, very expensive, but a more economical remedy can be obtained when both parties agree.
This is the rarest occurrence when it comes to uncontested divorce, in which a couple must go through the local county, and it can cost less than $ 1,000- $ 5,500 if lawyers are not involved. But I always recommend that you first contact an attorney to legally put everything on paper before contacting your local county and intermediary. However, most of them do not choose this path because the emotional and financial losses become so great that the parties cannot seem to come to an agreement on a settlement and, as I mentioned earlier, end up spending a huge amount of money on individual spousal attorneys. …
The pandemic has caused enormous financial and psychological stress, and my professional opinion is that couples should really do their best to use common sense and logic, sit down and develop the best possible plan for who will stay and who will move or sell. house, and then both will go their separate ways. When children are involved, hiring the right caring and motivated broker and attorneys to participate in such a personal case will ultimately minimize clutter and stress and potentially lead to more positive financial and personal results.
As the saying goes, winners never give up and quitters never win, so if you need to sell or refinance to pay off your spouse, sit down, be polite and decide. Plan where you are going, whether you are renting or buying other accommodations. Can you pay in cash, or are you applying for a mortgage, has your lending affected your borrowing opportunities?
But remember, if you have kids, do the right things for them and make smart decisions as you move forward in the process, and good luck.
Philip A. Rice is the owner / broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave Suite 180 in Great Neck. He has 40 years of experience in the real estate industry and is a Graduate of the Realtors Institute (GRI) as well as a Certified International Real Estate Specialist (CIPS). For a “FREE” 15 minute consultation, an analysis of the value of your home, or to answer any questions or concerns you may have with it, please call the mobile phone: (516) 647-4289 or email: Phil@TurnKeyRealEstate.Com