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Can I buy a house while getting a divorce?

On Behalf of | Oct 14, 2021 | Divorce

This is a common question you may encounter in the event of a divorce. You may want to keep some distance between yourself and your spouse during this stressful time, as well as begin moving forward with your life.

Additionally, North Carolina law requires spouses to be separated for one year and one day, living in different homes, before they can obtain a divorce. This requirement may add to one’s desire to purchase a new home, but is this possible?

The answer? Technically, yes.

It is possible to purchase new property, but it requires great care and entails more complicated steps than a real estate sale might normally involve. It is imperative to follow the correct steps when buying property during the divorce process as you would not want a new house to be classified as marital property or subject to division.

If you wish to purchase a home and make sure your ex-spouse does not have a claim to this property, you will likely need to:

  • Understand your financial obligations and the resources available to you after property division
  • Obtain a Free Trader Agreement (FTA)
  • Provide relevant parties, such as mortgage lenders, with the separation agreement

These extra steps and precautions are necessary to ensure you protect your assets and property throughout your divorce. It is often beneficial to seek experienced counsel in these situations.

What are the other options?

Of course, you have other options as well if you wish to avoid the risk or the involved process of purchasing a home during divorce. These options often include:

  • Renting a place until the divorce is finalized
  • Temporarily living with family or friends
  • Bird-nesting with your ex-spouse

Of course, the options you have will also vary depending on your situation. Some parents want to find a safe home to settle into, especially when they are negotiating a custody arrangement. However, waiting to find the right place for you and the right time to invest in your own home can reduce the complications you might face during the stressful process of divorce.