It’s not a topic any of us thinks we’ll have to talk about but unfortunately it’s not an uncommon situation. And in our business it’s a reality.
It’s a tough situation. There are a variety of different avenues and things to consider. And one thing is for sure, while we’ve worked with a number of different separating clients, none of them have been the same.
Couples separate for any number of different reasons and we’ve seen everything from couples who wouldn’t talk to each other or wouldn’t be in the same room as each other to couples who seem to appear and behave as if nothings changed and are as friendly and cordial as any happily married couple.
No matter what the reason or the degree of communication the next steps need to be planned out.
If there are children involved the priority is obviously a stable household for them to grow up in and often times that means keeping the same house, in the ideal circumstances.
With new mortgage rules in place over the past 8 years, keeping the same house can be a challenge though. With all the uncertainty the global economy, watching the US housing meltdown, rising consumer debt and rising home values the Canadian government brought in new mortgage rules that limited the amount of money/equity homeowners could take out of their property to 80% of the home’s appraised value.
That can make it challenging if one spouse wants to buy out the other spouse by taking Equity out of the home to do so.
So new programs were brought into a place to address that issue.
One of the programs is called Spousal Buyout which allows the refinance of the property up to 95% loan to value, the same as if someone were purchasing the home with minimum downpayment.
There are unique requirements though. In addition to being able to qualify for the new larger mortgage on one salary instead of two, and providing all the supporting documents, a separation agreement is required which, among other things, will lay out any support or other payments.
As always, its best to speak to an expert on this subject as mortgage rules continually change. A qualified mortgage professional can help.
Selling Your House
Sometimes separations aren’t amicable, trust can be lost during this painful time and strong heads can get in the way. There are times when no one wants to give an inch.
In those cases it can be difficult to chose an agent to list your home for fear that the agent might “take sides”.
In these cases co-listing is the right choice.
What that means is that each spouse choses their own agent and those two agents work together to sell the home, splitting the commission so there is not additional cost to the sellers.
Many times however, keeping the house just isn’t feasible. So renting is the best option.
Luckily finding a home to rent in Milton is fairly easy. There are lots of rentals on the market, however it’s important to realized that no rental will be kept as well as your house.
Many houses are neglected and dirty because many “investors” just buy from the builder and have an agent rent it, never having actually been to the house.
It might take some time and searching before you find a nice clean house but they are out there. Or if you’re a little less picky then you can sometimes negotiate decent rent since neglected rentals stay on the market longer.
Regardless of whether you’re staying, selling or renting, if you have questions we’re here to help. We’ve helped many couples through this process.