Should I Stay or Should I Go?

6.01.2011. by Audra McMahon

The age old question: Should I stay or should I go? Just like The Clash says, either way will have its difficulties. This is the truth when you're thinking about selling your home in a divorce. Yes, you may have raised your children in this home, hand crafted each detail to your liking, but if you can't live in this house and support you and your family's lifestyle on your income alone, then maybe, just maybe, finding a new home is your best option.

Allow me to share a story of a client of mine named Kelly. Kelly planned to use her future child support and alimony as income to stay in her home. A common mistake. Sure, the relationship she had with her ex-spouse was amicable at first, but that didn't mean that when the divorce was final he was going to pay. In fact, Kelly's husband was a gem during the divorce, granted her everything she asked for, including the home and a lovely monthly stipend for income that she'd be losing in their divorce. Well, when her husband Jack didn't pay his child support for 6 months in a row and Kelly had used all of her savings to stay afloat, she was faced with a few issues. If you make one mortgage late payment, you're not eligible for a refinance for between 12 - 24 months depending on your type of financing to save money to stay in the house. If you don't make mortgage payments for 3 or more months, you're looking at foreclosure. If you foreclose, you'll be wasting money in rent for 3 - 5 years!

Rule of thumb: Be sure that you're making sound decisions based off of what you can contribute to the household without any additional income. Consider any payments made to you by your ex-husband to be a bonus. For Kelly, it was over a year, thousands in court costs, and a tarnished credit rating, before her additional income was garnished from her ex-husband's wages. Not to mention the toll that asking her parents for help put on her personal pride.

Remember that home is where the heart is and not within the physical walls of a dwelling. Will it really be better for your children to live in the house where their father is no longer present, and their mother is constantly stressed because of money? Or is having quality time, love, and positive attention of more value? Only you can make this choice for your family but please make sure you allow math to play a roll in your final decision.

Did this blog make you question your current situation? Email Me...

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