A big mistake that a lot of people make in divorce is trying to keep the house according to an article by Lew Sichelman in the Chicago Tribune. Indeed in Maryland the court can grant use and possession of the family residence for up to three years from the date of divorce to the parent who gets custody of the minor children. In other words, keep the kids, keep the house.
But Kelly Lise Murray, lawyer and real estate agent in Nashville, says if you must keep the house, you should obtain an appraisal, a third-party inspection, a termite inspection, and a title search for hidden liens. Murray also says you should consider the true cost of home ownership, which may include things like lawn care, homeowner’s association fees, replacement of appliances, maintenance and upkeep.
Murray says people tend to underestimate the “ghosts” that go along with keeping the house. The place is often so filled with memories, both good and bad, she says, that “it’s not the family home anymore. It’s a huge lodestone. If you’re still linked through the house, then you’re not really divorced.”