Divorce can be a challenging, overwhelming and an emotional process, particularly when it comes to dividing assets such as your Marital home and Real Estate investments. As an experienced Realtor/Broker in the GTA, Peel, Halton and Hamilton regions of Ontario, I have helped many divorcing couples navigate this complex process for 23 years. The termination of the marriage is stressful and it usually requires the division of REAL PROPERTY. Marital property belongs to both parties, regardless of whose name is on Title. Each party is entitled to their equitable share. I represent both parties equally, professionally ,transparently and with compassion.
In this blog, I will provide tips on what you should prepare as part of your divorce, taking into account Ontario laws and practices.
Understand Ontario's Property Division Laws
Ontario follows the principle of equalization when dividing assets during a divorce. This means that each spouse is entitled to an equal share of the increase in the net value of the couple's assets during the marriage, including all Real Estate assets. It's crucial to understand the laws in Ontario and how they apply to your situation.
Get Your Property Appraised:
To determine the value of your Real Estate assets/holdings, it's crucial to hire an experienced and knowledgeable Real Estate Agent. They will assess your property's market value and provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis, which is the price it would likely sell for on the open market. This is important because the value of the property will play a significant role in the division of assets. If you would like a complimentary and confidential Comparative Market Analysis of your home, please reach out to me. If you also have vacation properties I can refer to an expert in that area for a Market Evaluation.
Determine What Happens to Your Real Estate:
After you've obtained a comparative Market Analysis of your most valuable asset which is usually your matrimonial home and vacation properties by a seasoned Realtor, you'll need to decide what happens to it during the divorce. There are a few different options:
Sell the property - If neither spouse wants to keep the property, you can sell it and split the proceeds according to your province's property division laws.
Buy out the other spouse - If one spouse wants to keep the property, they can buy out the other spouse's share of the property's value.
Continue to Co-own the property and share use or Lease it out - In some cases, couples may choose to continue co-owning the property after the divorce. This can be a challenging arrangement, so it's essential to get legal advice before making this decision.
Make Sure Your Mortgage Is in Order:
If you have a mortgage on your property, it's crucial to ensure that it's in order and both parties have a copy of the most recent mortgage statement. It will outline what money is owing on your mortgage(s), interest rate(s), years and terms remaining and what the penalty is to break it early. It is a good idea to speak to your Financial Planner and Mortgage Lender to know what your Buying power (budget you qualify for) individually after the sale of the Matrimonial home. This enables you to plan ahead knowing what your budget is going forward to purchase a home. You may need to refinance the mortgage if one spouse is buying out the other's share of the property. Alternatively, if you're selling the property, you'll need to pay off the mortgage on closing. Speak to your mortgage broker or lender to ensure that you understand the terms of your mortgage and what options are available to you. I have many excellent lenders to put you in touch with if you require assistance. I work with the best Finance Professional from all Banks and Mortgage Brokers so please reach out if you want me to connect you!
Work with an Experienced Realtor and Lawyer:
Navigating a divorce can be challenging, but having the right professionals on your team can make the process smoother. Working with an experienced Realtor and Lawyer can help ensure that your Real Estate assets are handled correctly during the divorce. A Realtor can also provide you with guidance and assistance on how to prepare your property for sale and the right time to sell, while a Lawyer can help you understand your legal rights and obligations.
In conclusion, preparing your Real Estate assets for divorce can be a complex process. By understanding the laws in your province, getting an appraisal of your property, determining how to split your Real Estate assets, making sure your mortgage is in order, and working with experienced professionals, you can ensure that your Real Estate assets are handled efficiently during the divorce.
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