There are many big decisions to make during a Texas divorce. You may wonder about how you will share parenting time of your children or what will happen to your retirement accounts and credit cards. However, very few assets elicit such a strong emotional response as your home when you begin planning for divorce.
Homeownership may have been a long-term goal for you, which means that you may worry about losing the property. The equity in the home is also likely one of your most valuable shared marital assets.
Who decides which spouse keeps the home when you file for divorce in Texas?
You have the right to decide if you can agree
The best outcome for those facing divorce with valuable property like real estate often comes from the couple working with one another to decide how to divide their property. If the two of you can reach a settlement that you both agree on, you can file an uncontested divorce and submit paperwork to the courts explaining how you will divide your property. However, not everyone can agree with their spouse about what to do with their most valuable property.
A judge can decide if you can’t compromise
Some Texas divorces end up embroiled in litigation. The spouses both feel strongly about certain matters and cannot seem to reach a compromise. In such high-conflict scenarios, a Texas family law judge will look over documents related to your circumstances and finances to determine the appropriate way to divide your property in accordance with the community property statute in Texas.
Although a 50/50 division of assets is what people often imagine when thinking about community property division rules, the judge has the authority to deviate from that standard if they believe that it would be fair to do so. The spouse keeping the home may need to give up other property, like their interest in a retirement account, or they need may need to withdraw equity from the home when they refinance to pay their spouse for their share of the property.
In other words, even if you do not have control over the decision about what happens to the home, you can anticipate its value at least influencing what you receive during the property division process. Learning more about the rules that apply during Texas divorce proceedings can help you plan for the end of your marriage.