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10 Facts You Should Know About How to Sell a House During a Divorce

10 Facts You Should Know About How to Sell a House During a Divorce

Going through a divorce is something a person would never want to experience. The rollercoaster of emotions, the fear of the future, the unending sleepless nights – all would make one question his or her life choices. However, aside from this plethora of undesirable effects emotionally, one is bound to undergo the “business” side of both marriage and divorce – the splitting of assets, properties and other essential profits.

The question on how to sell a house during a divorce – in such a difficult time, will always pop in one’s head. The marital home is considered as one of the most significant assets between spouses. The profit obtained upon selling the house during divorce is also helpful in the spouses’ new lives, apart from one another, Thus, here are some facts that you should know about how to sell a house during a divorce:

Communal Property

Communal or Community Property refers to joint ownership of property acquired during a marriage. Upon divorce, this property shall be divided equally between the two parties. If your house is a communal property, it will be sold.


Selling a house is a big decision for divorced partners – however, one must ensure that his/her children will face the least effect during this hard time. Usually, a buyout happens so that the custodial parent can continue to provide a stable environment for the kids. The person buying out the other, needs to have an immense amount of money and must make sure that he/she can afford the mortgage on his or her own.

But, if neither of the parties can pay the mortgage individually, it is best to just sell the house.


It is easy to say “just pay off your part in the mortgage and move on with your life.” However, we all know this is not as simple as it sounds. It is not easy to remove your name and liability from this obligation. Discuss some options with your divorce attorney as having your name in the mortgage can easily affect your credit score, and disrupt your future plans.

House Appraisal

If you decide that you want to sell the house, both should participate in the house appraisal process. In order to maximize the value and market potential of your house, a licensed real estate appraiser with an experience in appraising homes for divorces, shall be hired. The appraiser can greatly help you in knowing how to sell a house during a divorce. Each of the partners could hire a separate appraiser, or you can both get one appraiser.

The appraiser will assess the value through the house’s current state – its size, number of rooms, both the exterior and interior conditions, and measurements.

However, expect that the buyer will also have an appraiser of his or her own, which is an important factor when he/she applies for a loan. If the buyer’s appraisal does not line up with the seller’s appraisal, good negotiation is the key.


Preparations Before Selling

As the house sale unfolds, it is with great significance to know the portions of your house that need maintenance and repair. It is pretty basic to make sure that the house is clean while you are in the middle of a sale, however, there are other factors to consider in the upkeep of the house.

Money is surely involved in the repairs, so talk this over with the other party. Discuss the assigned contribution of the two parties to avoid any critical arguments in the future.

Do not Publicize a Divorce Sale

It is better to hide the fact that you are selling your house during a divorce, as potential buyers may think of this as a desperate move and may lower their price. Try to keep your pictures together and retain some of the other spouse’s clothes and things in the house to eliminate any doubt and suspicion.

Real Estate Agent

One of the most important parts in knowing how to sell a house during a divorce is hiring a real estate agent with experience in divorce-related real estate sales. You should get a realtor who has a good track record in selling house sales, all while being sensitive to the needs of their clients.

A good real estate agent can effectively communicate and coordinate with each party about the current status of their home sale – without causing unnecessary commotion and conflict.

It is important that both parties find a trustworthy agent to remove worries and stress.

Emotions Sometimes Get in the Way

One day, you are so excited and enthused to sell your house and start your life anew; the next day, you can’t even get out of the bed because your mind starts to cling to the memories made inside the house. Trust us, all of your feelings are valid and normal.

In the process of your house sale, it is best if you learn how to control your emotions and face your potential buyers with poise. Remember that selling your house is a business and financial decision, which will be advantageous for you in the long run.

Know the Questions, Know the Answers

Surely, you will encounter lots of questions about the house, and even beyond it. The curiosity of your potential buyers on the house’s history will not dwindle anytime soon. Anticipating and researching about questions from the buyers can greatly help you control your emotions while doing a house sale. Be sure that you know what to answer and even when to answer once these queries come pouring in.

Dealing with Offers

Offers do not necessarily mean that the deal is done. Unless the transaction is closed, always be prepared for a lot of discussion.

In the middle of deals, things can go awry: your partner may not cooperate, your buyer may not have the right documents, or your emotions may get in the way.

However, make sure that you will always look at the bigger picture – the actual selling of the house marks the beginning of your new life. Hence, it is of utmost importance that you will discuss these offers with your spouse, real estate agent, and divorce attorney to ensure a profitable sale is at hand. 


Finally, after the never-ending spectacle of negotiations, your house has found its new person. Now, the division of the proceeds between you and your ex-spouse will take place.

The splitting of the earnings is complex and crucial, as you have to deduct previous debts and obligations in the final amount. Just note that this process varies depending on the rules of the state or place you are in.

It is also important to look at how much you and your previous partner has contributed to the property individually. Your attorney would surely help you to figure out the percentage of the sale proceeds that each of you will acquire.

Knowing the ways on how to sell a house during a divorce can somehow alleviate the stress and tension brought by the situation. Just remember, divorce is not the end – as bitter endings usually pave the way for better beginnings.

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