A divorce is never as simple as two people just separating. There are various aspects from the financial to child custody that must be dealt with as well. For one or both of the partners, another facet that needs taken care of is finding a new place to live.
If you’re ready to find a new home, it can seem like a daunting task at first. How can you find a place you’ll love that still fits within your budget, especially with half of your income now leaving with your partner? Check out these tips for house hunting post-divorce.
Location, Location, Location
The old adage always stands true in the housing market. You’ll probably be staying in the same general area, especially if you have children, which makes your move that much easier. From there, you can decide which part of the area to live in.
You could choose to live in the city, in a suburb, or a smaller town outside of the city. Regardless of your choice, consider the surrounding community. Think of the amenities offered nearby, how close you will be to work, and the proximity of your friends and family.
Features, in the market sense, mean the size and appearance of the house. Double-check your monthly budget and consider what size home you can afford. It’s never a good idea to stretch your budget too thin over mortgage or rent payments.
You’ll also want to consider if the house is move-in ready or needs some work in your budgeting. Don’t take on more than you can handle or repairs from a specialist you simply can’t afford. After a divorce, it’s usually best to find somewhere you can just move and settle into.
Hiring a Real Estate Agent
It’s never a bad idea to rely on a real estate agent. If you’re unsure of who in the area will the best option post-divorce, speak with your legal aid. Professionals like this divorce lawyer in Orange County often have a network of other professionals they trust and can guide you in the right direction. A real estate agent can help you:
- Get more information about listed homes
- Screen houses to find one that suits your interest
- Arrange for you to see the home
- Provide insight into the neighborhood
- Help you find something well within your budget without sacrificing your wants
- Negotiate price
- Help you find movers, mortgage lenders, contactors, and more
For Sale by Vendor
If your budget is too tight for a real estate agent, then consider homes that are for sale by vendor. This allows you to buy privately, saving you plenty of cost and possibly helping you find a lower housing price altogether.
Keep an eye out for vendors who are asking for far more than the house is worth, those that factor in the cost of a real estate agent anyway, and those trying hide damages. Just like you relied on a professional for your separation, it’s probably in your best interest to rely on a professional when hunting a house as well.