Whether you bought your home five years ago or 25 years ago, you probably remember exactly what you offered for it. After all, it was probably the biggest purchase you had ever made. Throughout your marriage, you and your spouse have committed thousands of dollars of your household income toward your mortgage, as well as property taxes and homeowners insurance.
Like many homeowners in Oak Hills and across Virginia, you may have invested tens of thousands more in updating the home, remodeling it and repairing it as age takes its toll on the critical systems. Although you may know what you paid for your house and roughly how much you have invested in it, you probably don’t know what your house is actually worth.
Real property values grow over time
If you have not refinanced or had your home appraised since you purchased it in the 90s, you may be in for quite a surprise when you look at what similar properties in your area are worth. Just comparing your home to others on the market can give you an idea of its rough value.
However, an appraisal is often necessary, especially if there are premium upgrades to the home that will influence the fair market value. Knowing what your home is worth now is more important than knowing what you paid for it when you negotiate a divorce.
You have a right to ask for your share of the current equity in the home based on the fair market value, not the purchase price for it. That big difference between what you paid and what you would pay for it now can impact whether you can finance the property on your own after the divorce and drastically alter the division of other property.
Making sure you know what your biggest assets are worth is crucial as you prepare for property division proceedings in a Virginia divorce.