Compromising in property division can have favorable results

Divorce proceedings tend to get a bad rap when depicted in popular TV shows and films. Knockdown, drag-out fights might make for good entertainment, but they hardly make for successful divorces. Property division is usually much more effective and yields more agreeable results when both parties of a Pennsylvania couple can work together to decide how to divide assets. This is especially true for larger assets, such as a marital home.

Homes tend to be one of the largest areas of contention during asset division because of the deep, emotional ties that many people have to them. Parents might recall raising their children there while others might have fond memories of happier times. This can lead to one or more parties fighting to retain ownership of the home even when it is not an ideal situation. However, if one person is insistent on staying in the home and the other spouse agrees, the party remaining in the house must buy the share his or her ex in the home. This usually means the mortgage must be refinanced.

When both spouses agree that neither party should keep the home or in the event that the mortgage cannot be refinanced, there is a second option. A great many divorcing couples choose to sell the home that they once shared in order to establish fresh starts elsewhere. Once a home is sold off, the profits are split between both parties.

It can be tempting to make a stand during property division, especially when one party has deep emotional ties to a home. However, memories exist within a person’s mind and not the four walls of a house, and fighting over the outcome of a house can extend proceedings and pile on unnecessary expenses. By taking care to consider the implications of keeping or selling a home, Pennsylvania couples can keep proceedings to a minimum while also achieving an agreeable divorce settlement.

Source:, “How to Divide a House When You’re Getting a Divorce”, Liz Alterman, June 7, 2016


FindLaw Network