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Old 10-02-2010, 07:26 AM   #1
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Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

I am on disability and don't have any potential for making more income. I would like to retain the house we had specially built for us for the children and myself to reside. I was hoping that you all brilliant people could give me some ideas in how to get a supplemental monthly income besides getting spousal and child support from my eventually ex-husband. We barely make the payments now. Getting rid of his credit card debt will help and selling property and assets. But, I was more concerned about buying my husband out of his half and continuing the payments.

One idea I had was for me to convert my office into a bedroom and get a boarder. I was thinking of offering it to my niece who is living and paying for a dorm and attending a University nearby. That would get me thru for a few years or so until the kids are finished with high school. Then, I could consider selling and moving to a smaller place.


Any other suggestions? My interests include the medical field, editing movies (very amateur) and photography. I don't think that I am allowed to work very much while on disability, so a part- time job would not be an option. My health is not stable enough to chance going off Social Security and just having to reapply- that would be a nightmare.

My youngest son has offered to sell his rare "Pokemon" cards on E-bay. He's such a sweetheart.

Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
Best Regards,

Last edited by Administrator; 02-03-2011 at 12:40 PM.

 
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Old 10-02-2010, 10:33 AM   #2
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

What does your attorney suggest?

 
Old 10-02-2010, 11:41 PM   #3
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

Good news! I spoke with my sister who works for an attorney. My brain is so twisted, I already knew the answer. It is only the equity in the house that is divided based on the current fair market price. We put a big down payment down on the house and bought our house when prices were high, so with the decreased value in today's market, the appraisal of our house will probably be nearly equal to the rest of the mortgage.

Also, I owned my own home before we bought this one, so I would be awarded more of a percentage than just 50% like California law states.

That means there is probably little if no equity, and may not even need to worry about buying him out. I still have to make payments on a big mortgage, but if we sell our rental property and other assets and divide the monies, it might just pay for most of the remainder. He would be responsible for half or more of our credit card debt as well.

I hope I have it figured out right. I'm not getting much sleep so my thinking process is a bit off.
Thanks for your response. My attorney charges nearly $300/ hr. You all give free advice and have been there.
Best Regards,

 
Old 01-29-2011, 06:12 AM   #4
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

Sunsetnan-

one possibility you should be aware of is that your STBX may insist (through his attorney) that you refinance the mortgage in your name only so he's not obligated. This is typical advice any competent attorney gives to the partner who won't be occupying the home. Otherwise, he's legally responsble for a mortgage on a house he has no right to live in. Now if his side doesn't bring it up, that's fine and don't breathe a word- but you need to be prepared for that possibility.

I like the boarder idea, especially if it's a niece. Some local codes have laws against non-family tenants so she'd be legal. Also- can you do child care in your home or is that impossible because of your disability?

 
Old 01-29-2011, 07:09 AM   #5
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

I am so ambivalent about this issue, but I believe I am at a point to realize that I will have to let the house go. I may have to go the short sale route. I am planning to go soon to a free seminar concerning the upside down mortgage issue. There are some new laws in California concerning this and it would be in my best interest to get the update.

I interviewed for a part time job and didn't get it but I don't think that is a good idea right now because of my health and I don't need any added stress. It would have been perfect because it appeared to be low stress, was only 3 hours a day and the pay would have been low enough so that I could continue to get Social Security. At this point, with just my SS income, I won't qualify for a home loan modification on my own.

Since my kids are teenagers, I won't be getting child support for very long when I do get it, so i won't be able to count on the income to pay for a mortgage loan. I hadn't thought of that before. Since my STBX doesn't make very much money, any alimony or spousal support will be minimal.

After I thought about it, my niece would be crazy to get in the middle of all of this and she would have to commute everyday an hour and a half.

And, even though it will be hard to leave our friends, I think it is probably best to get as far away as possible from my STBX and in-laws. They seem to still manage to cause chaos even with the restraining order. And, my family will be closer.

I have to think of my children's emotional health and my physical health as a priority. And, with my credit being effected by a short sale or default, I won't be owning my own home anytime soon.

 
Old 01-29-2011, 10:58 AM   #6
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

You may be better off letting go of the house. When I was divorcing, there was a woman in my therapy group who had taken out a loan to buy out her ex-husband's share of the house- she thought it would be better for the kids to keep them in the house. Unfortunately, she was perpetually stressed from the heavy debt load. On top of that, the Ex still felt like it was his territory, too. It didn't help that she liked to have him do maintenance things on the house that he'd done when they were married.

Several times my attorney asked if I would be interested in buying out STBX. Every time I said heck, no. DS and I moved into a smaller place in the same town and the new house felt like home as soon as we moved in- and it didn't have the ghosts of the old one.

You may be better off making a fresh start, too.

 
Old 01-30-2011, 10:22 PM   #7
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Re: Ideas to Keep House in Divorce

Thanks, Athena. I finally came to the same conclusion. Trying to get out of it without having to owe or tarnish my credit score if that's even possible. There is no equity because of the housing market, so there's nothing to buy out. We may even owe more than we'll get from a short sale. So, biding my time for the right moment to sell and move away. Will have to see what my financial future looks like before I'll know how to proceed.
Best Regards,

 
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