If you or your spouse has decided to end the marriage, you have many decisions to make. One of the most pressing questions is where to live.
Buying your own house may seem like a logical choice. However, it may be more challenging than you think to obtain a home loan.
An article by U.S. News & World Report provides a few good tips about how to qualify for a mortgage on your own after your Georgia divorce.
One tip is to determine if you can refinance the existing house in order to take your name off the mortgage and leave the house in your ex's name alone.
Why is taking your name off the current mortgage sometimes helpful? Because it immediately decreases the amount of debt on your credit record. Without being saddled with the weight of that first mortgage, it can be far easier to get approved for a new mortgage — allowing you to purchase your own house in your own name.
A second tip is to wait until after your divorce is finalized before trying to buy a new house.
Yes, a contested divorce can potentially drag on for a very long time, and you naturally want to start moving forward and building a new life for yourself. However, waiting until you receive the final divorce decree can potentially save you considerable money and frustration.
Why is this the case? Because many lenders look at alimony and child support obligations as debts, just like ongoing car payments or credit card debts. Lenders may be reluctant to give you a mortgage if they aren't sure how much money (if any) you will have to pay in alimony and child support each month.
Of course, every divorce is different, and your hopes and plans for your housing situation are likely unique as well. If you have concerns about whether or not to fight for your current house as part of the marital property division process, consider consulting an attorney experienced in Georgia family law matters.