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San Antonio Real Estate Property Attorney

Bexar County real estate property division lawyer

San Antonio Real Estate Property Lawyer Serving Bexar County

The process of dividing property during a divorce can become very complicated. In addition to determining whether certain assets are considered community property or separate property, spouses may need to make decisions about how they will handle ownership of a variety of complex assets. Real estate property is likely to account for a significant portion of the marital estate. Whether a couple needs to decide who will keep the marital home or address other properties they own, a spouse can protect their financial interests by working with a lawyer who can help them understand the best ways to handle these assets.

At the law firm of Brandon Wong & Associates, we know how difficult it can be to end your marriage, but by taking the right steps during the divorce process, you can protect yourself against financial losses and make sure you will have the resources to meet your needs in the future. We can advise you on your rights regarding your marital home or other properties you and your spouse own, and whether you choose to divide or sell real estate assets, we can make sure you follow the correct procedures and avoid complications that could affect you down the road. We will work to help you achieve your goals and make sure you are in a good financial position as you move forward following your divorce.

Is Real Estate Community Property or Separate Property?

As you address issues related to property and assets during your divorce, you will need to understand whether real estate is considered to be community property, meaning that it is jointly owned by you and your spouse, or separate property that is owned by one party. If you purchased a home or other property during your marriage, it is community property, even if only one spouse's name is on the title or mortgage. The value of this asset will need to be considered as you determine the full value of the marital estate. Depending on how you divide your marital assets, either you or your spouse may retain ownership of the home, or you may choose to sell the home during the divorce process in order to ensure that all of your assets can be divided fairly.

A home or other property may be considered separate property if it was owned by either you or your spouse before getting married, if it was received by one spouse as a gift or inheritance, or if it was obtained in exchange for other separate property. However, a separately-owned home or property will still need to be addressed during the divorce process. The value of this asset may be considered when looking at the financial resources available to each spouse, which may inform how marital property will be divided. Contributions to separate property by each spouse may also need to be considered. For example, if your spouse owned a home before you were married, but you contributed to mortgage payments during your marriage or helped make improvements to the property, you may be able to receive reimbursement for these contributions.

Addressing Ownership of Real Estate

It is important to make sure transfers of ownership of real estate property are handled correctly during the divorce process. Failure to properly address issues related to the home's title or mortgage could lead to complications or financial problems in the future. For example, if you and your spouse co-own your home, and your spouse will be maintaining sole ownership of the home after your divorce, you will need to have your name removed from the title, and the mortgage will need to be refinanced in your spouse's name. If you do not take these steps, and your spouse fails to make mortgage payments in the future, the lender may take legal action to recover payments from you. If your name remains on the title of the home, this could prevent you from purchasing a new home in the future. By dealing with these issues with the help of a skilled lawyer, you can make sure you will be able to move forward with your life free of complications.

Real Estate Property FAQs


How Is Home Equity Split in a Divorce?

Answer: Home equity refers to the portion of the property’s value owned by the homeowner. During a divorce, one option is to sell the home and divide the proceeds between the spouses. After paying off any outstanding mortgage balance and other expenses, the remaining equity can be divided according to the agreed-upon terms or as determined by the court. Another option is for one spouse to keep the home and purchase the other spouse’s share of the equity. This can be done by refinancing the mortgage in the name of the spouse who will retain ownership and using the funds to pay the other spouse for their share of the home equity.


Who Gets the House in a Divorce in Texas?

Answer: If you and your spouse can reach an agreement, you can decide who will keep the house. This may involve one spouse buying out the other’s share of the home equity or making other arrangements to ensure a fair division of the home and other community property according to Texas law. If you and your spouse cannot agree on the division of the house, the court will decide. In Texas, the court follows the principle of “just and right” division, which means the judge will consider various factors to determine a fair allocation of property. These factors may include the financial resources of each spouse, any child custody arrangements, and each spouse’s contribution to the acquisition and maintenance of the marital home.


Does a Spouse Have to Agree to a Buyout?

Answer: In the spirit of amicability, it is often preferable for spouses to be able to agree to a potential buyout. However, reaching agreements during the divorce process is not always possible. In Texas, when spouses cannot agree to the terms of a buyout, the court could order the sale of the home and then have the spouses divide the proceeds of the sale.


How Does My Ex-Spouse Buy Me Out of the House?

Answer: Before proceeding with the buyout, you and your ex-spouse should agree on the house’s current market value. This can be done by obtaining a professional appraisal or through an agreement between both parties. Once the home’s value is determined, you will need to calculate your share of the equity. This can be done by subtracting any outstanding mortgage balance or other debts secured by the property from the market value. You and your ex-spouse will need to negotiate and agree on the buyout amount. This is the amount your ex-spouse will pay you to transfer your share of the equity in the property to them. Your ex-spouse may also need to refinance the mortgage in their name alone. Once the buyout terms are agreed upon, it is essential to formalize the agreement in a legal document.


Can You Remove Someone’s Name From a Mortgage Without Refinancing?

Answer: Yes, you can. Obtaining lender approval to remove one party’s name from the mortgage may be a viable option addressing post-divorce ownership of the home without having to refinance the mortgage. Additionally, if your spouse declares bankruptcy, this may provide another avenue to remove their name from your mortgage without having to refinance. This may be a good option if your goal is to become the sole owner of the house.


Can I Force My Ex-Spouse to Sell the House After the Divorce?

Answer: You generally cannot force your spouse to sell your house, because as co-owners of the property, you will need to agree on this decision. However, you may be able to ask the court to order the sale of the property. The court will consider various factors regarding the specific circumstances of your case to determine whether the sale of the home will be necessary or whether other options may be available.


What Happens if I Want to Sell My House, but My Ex-Spouse Does Not?

Answer: Negotiating and agreeing with your ex-spouse regarding the house sale may be possible. This could involve discussing the reasons behind your desire to sell and finding a mutually agreeable solution. You may need to ask the court to intervene if negotiations are unsuccessful. The court could order the sale of the house, especially if it is deemed necessary to ensure a fair division of assets.


How Can a Real Estate Property Lawyer Help Me?

Answer: A real estate attorney can provide professional legal advice and guidance throughout the process of buying or selling a home. They can also review and draft contracts to protect your rights and ensure fair terms. Moreover, they can conduct thorough title searches to ensure there are no liens on the property. In case of disputes or litigation, your attorney will represent your interests and help you work towards a resolution.

Contact Our San Antonio Property Division Attorneys for Real Estate

Our lawyers can assist you in addressing issues related to real estate property. In addition to your marital home, we can also help you address other properties, such as vacation or guest homes, commercial real estate, investment properties, or other land owned by you and/or your spouse. Contact our office today at 210-201-3832 to discuss these and other issues in your initial consultation.

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