If you’re going through a divorce in Houston, selling your Houston home during a divorce can be one of the most complicated aspects of dissolving your marriage.
Houston is the fourth largest city in the United States, and there are plenty of reasons why people are choosing to call it home. From a booming economy to an exciting, diverse culture, Houston has something for everyone.
Houston has a low divorce rate compared to other major cities. Still, over 20% of marriages end in divorce in the Houston area.
Fortunately, there are resources available that can help you navigate this tricky process and make sure you sell your house fast and move on with the next chapter in your life.
Get on the same page with your spouse when selling your Houston home during a divorce
Selling a Houston home during a divorce is tough.
Here are some questions to consider:
- What do you want? Do you want to sell the house or do you want to buy your ex out and keep it? Or would you prefer that they buy you out?
- What about your spouse – Do they want to sell or would they want to buy you out of your share?
- How are your credit scores?
- What is your debt-to-income ratio?
- What would be better for your financial situation, especially in light of the divorce, and the division of marital assets and debts?
It is very important to discuss all of this with your ex spouse and try to get on the same page. If your relationship is amicable, then this shouldn’t be too bad. If communication has broken down and/or emotions are high, then consider meeting in a neutral location like a lawyer’s office.
Sell vs. Buy Out Your Spouse
Deciding what to do with your Houston home during a divorce is never easy. There are two main options: you can sell the house, or you can buy out your spouse (or have them buy you out).
Here’s how to choose between the two.
Do you want to keep living in the house?
If you want to stay living in the house after the divorce is final, then buying out your spouse is probably a good choice for you. However, if neither of you wants to live in the house post-divorce, then it makes more sense to sell it and split the profits.
What’s your financial situation like?
If one of you has unstable finances or a lot of debt, it can be challenging to get approved for a mortgage or home equity loan if they need one to buy out their spouse. In that case, selling might be your only option. You should consult with a financial advisor or professional to make sure that both of you can afford whatever option you decide on.
Consider selling your home to an investor
When you’re going through a divorce, you may not realize that there are many options available to you when it comes to selling your house. While your first instinct might be to list your home on the open market, there are plenty of benefits to consider selling your house to an investor instead.
If you’re going through a divorce—or even if you’re just considering it—here are some reasons to consider selling your house to an investor:
You can get an offer from an investor in as little as 24-hours, and if you choose to sell, the closing process is usually much faster than the standard 6-8 weeks that it takes to sell a home on the open market.
Divorce is already very personal and sensitive, so if you don’t want your neighbors and co-workers knowing about your private life, selling your house directly to an investor can be a great way to avoid gossip and keep things private.
No repairs or upgrades required
The last thing you probably want is another expense right now, but that’s exactly what will happen if you decide to make repairs or upgrades before listing your house on the open market. Forget all of that! You can leave all the expensive repairs and cleaning to the investor and move on.
Selling your Houston home through a realtor during divorce
Selling your house during a divorce can be a complicated process. From the very beginning, you may have a question about who is going to get what, how much money you can expect from the sale of your home, and how quickly you need to act. The answer to most of these questions lies in your process for selling your house and dividing the proceeds.
If you’re planning on selling your house with a real estate agent, the first step will be to list the house on the open market. According to Jim Collingford, a real estate lawyer based in Houston “The first step is typically listing on the open market, and that’s where couples often disagree as to how long they should wait before accepting an offer or reducing their price. It’s also where one partner can feel blindsided if he or she didn’t realize the other partner wanted to take an offer.”
In addition to listing your home on the market, you’ll need to decide how to divide any expenses associated with selling the home—including repairs and staging costs—as well as any proceeds.
Selling your Houston house with a realtor comes with hefty commissions that reduce your bottom line. Also, the sale process on the open market involves open houses and lots of showings. As such, all your neighbors and the market as a whole will be aware of this sale at a time when you would like some privacy. Still, selling through a realtor can be the right decision if your home is in excellent shape and the market is favorable.
Going through a divorce is tough but selling your Houston home during a divorce doesn’t have to be. First, try to get on the same page with your spouse about what each of you would prefer to do and come up with a compromise. Then, decide if you will be selling the house or if one of the spouses will buy the other out and stay in the home. If you decide to sell during a divorce, consider selling to an investor for a faster sale, more privacy and no repairs needed. Alternatively, you can choose to sell the house through a realtor if the home is in great shape and the market is favorable.