Featuring real estate articles and information to help real estate buyers and sellers. The Nest features writings from Georges Benoliel and other real estate professionals. Georges is the Co-Founder of NestApple and has been working as an active real estate investor for over a decade.
When you said “till death do us part,” you both did mean it. Unfortunately, for around half of all marriages in America, that never seems to be the case. Even if you wanted to try to make it work, divorce sometimes happens to the best of us. When it does, the family home doesn’t always stay with one party or another. Can you sell property during a divorce? At times, you will have to decide to sell off the old home and split the proceeds. Selling a house is painful enough. But things get rougher when you are dealing with selling a condo or a co-op. There’s a lot more you have to be aware of when you’re trying to sell during a divorce. After all, it’s not just “your” home. Selling during a divorce can be tricky! How to sell your house during a divorce?
When it comes to condos and co-ops, it’s a given that you will have a Homeowners’ Association in charge of maintaining your area. This is especially true if you are living in New York City. However, that doesn’t mean you can skirt the fact that you’re in an HOA or brush it out of the way. You have to note that you have an HOA, ideally in writing.
Both condos and co-ops have documentation and by-laws that new buyers will need to know before moving in. This includes a run-through of owner fees. You will need to give your real estate agent the number to the HOA office to collect the documents and give them to buyers. You are in the middle of a divorce. Therefore, you need to realize that you can’t always trust your ex to help in this process.
A lot of people will do whatever it takes to make their exes suffer or delay divorce finalization. This includes delaying the sale of a home by making it hard to do walkthroughs. Or even refusing to aid real estate agents. How to sell your house during a divorce under these conditions? If you feel your soon-to-be-ex is doing this, you need to consult your divorce attorney. You need to bring your real estate agent into the loop.
This depends on the type of housing that you currently live in. Most of the time, you do not have to explain to the HOA why you are selling. If you have a condo, it may not even be legal to require you to do so. However, you may still want to do that to make sure you have all the documents potential buyers want to have.
Co-ops can be a little different. Depending on the co-op rules, you may need to sell your piece back to the co-op so that all current residents get a share of the profits. On the other hand, others may allow you to make a standard sale where the rest of the home’s increase becomes your profit. Due to this little fact, you should tell the co-op that you’re selling.
While you may be in a rush to get the condo or co-op sold, there can be stumbling blocks in your way. One of those is that you may not be allowed to sell your home during a divorce to specific buyers, especially not real estate developers. If you own a co-op, then you might have the board reject an offer on your behalf simply because they feel a better buyer could come along. Time can be an issue. If you are desperate for a quick sale, it may be a smart move to explain the situation about your sale. If domestic violence is a key reason for the divorce, talk to your attorney and notify the HOA. There may be certain resources and rights that are at your disposal.
Can I sell my house during a divorce via a short sale? Once in a blue moon, you will hear about short sales being made to further the divorce process. However, this isn’t usually something that condos and co-ops will allow. Your best option is to ask the HOA what they will allow and discuss the matter with them. This may require some legal string-pulling to push through.
The best thing that you can do is talk to a real estate agent who can develop a strategy to make your sale work as fast as possible. When in doubt, choose an experienced brokerage who has a lot of experience to be done with people who have dealt with divorce. Whenever possible, make sure to give your divorce attorney a heads up about what you want to do. Between a good real estate agent and a good lawyer, you should have nothing to worry about.