Imagine this: you and your lawyer have worked hard to come up with a divorce settlement that is satisfactory to both you and your ex. He or she is getting the house and you are getting other parts of the marital property. You give up your rights to the home through a quitclaim deed and he or she agrees to pay the mortgage. You think everything is fine until several months later when you are being told that you need to make a late mortgage payment. Sadly, this kind of thing happens in Atlanta quite frequently since just because an ex has the home does not mean that the other former spouse is off of the mortgage.

It is essential that anyone who is going through a divorce and has a marital home with a mortgage discusses how to completely remove him- or herself from any financial responsibility if he or she is not keeping the home. There are more and more people in Atlanta who are choosing to keep the family home instead of selling it after a divorce, but both former spouses must take care to ensure that only one spouse remains on the mortgage.

One of the easiest ways to get oneself off of a mortgage is to sell the home. The best-case scenario would be to sell the home before the divorce is finalized so that both spouses have cash to divide instead of one more piece of physical property. With the housing market the way that it is, however, it may be difficult to do, which is why many ex-couples try to refinance the home.

If one spouse refinances the home in his or her name alone, the other spouse will no longer be financially responsible for the mortgage and both parties can move forward as single adults.

Source: Loan Safe, “Mortgage Options While Going Through a Divorce,” Evan Bedard, July 14, 2013