During the happier times of your marriage, you loved packing up the car and heading to the Blue Ridge Mountains to spend some time in your cabin. Now that you are planning for a divorce, though, your vacation home could give you some serious headaches.
As you probably know, not all divorces are the same. For couples with many assets, equitably dividing property can be difficult. If you have a second residence, you should realize it may become a bargaining chip in your divorce. You should also know a few other things about how your cabin or vacation property may affect your divorce proceedings.
Keeping your cabin
When going through a divorce, couples usually do not fight over low-value items. Instead, each spouse typically wants to be sure to receive her or his fair share of valuable assets. If your cabin falls into this category, you may need to negotiate carefully to keep it. On the other hand, if you have an amicable relationship with your spouse, you may be able to split either ownership or occupancy times.
Selling your cabin
Because your vacation cabin may be one of your most valuable assets, you and your spouse may decide to sell it and split the proceeds. Selling a vacation home is often different than offloading a primary residence, however. You and your spouse may need to obtain independent appraisals to obtain a realistic idea of your vacation home’s current value.
Paying your cabin’s mortgage
If you and your spouse do not own your cabin outright, you may need to continue paying the mortgage during and possibly after divorce proceedings to avoid foreclosure. Refinancing the mortgage is often an effective way to end either your or your spouse’s obligation to pay.
You chose to purchase a vacation property to add some tranquility to your life. During your divorce, though, your cabin may become a significant point of stress. Whether you want to keep or sell your vacation property, you must have a plan for managing your divorce.