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Before listing a home for sale, we can assist you to determine if one spouse can remain in the matrimonial home and allow the other spouse a payout so they can move on to another home to purchase or rent if they chose.


We can assist you and your spouse with the separation agreement and determine if the car loans, credit cards or other debts remain or get paid from the proceeds of the separation. This applies to common-law couples as well as married couples.


When faced with separation or divorce, one of the owners can buy out the other spouse to a maximum of 95% of the house value.


Remaining in the Home


If you decide to stay in the family home, you'll need to buy out your former partner. In some cases, you may need to refinance your mortgage to give your ex-partner a lump-sum payment.


Your lender will require that you requalify for the mortgage on your own. You’ll have to prove to your lender that you can afford to make the mortgage payments.


Your lender may ask for certain information including:

  • A separation agreement (if you have one)

  • The amount of any child support payments

  • The amount of any spousal support payments

Daughter hugging father


If you don’t qualify for the mortgage on your own, an option is to ask another person to act as a joint borrower or guarantor. This person should have a good credit history and income. Before co-signing, make sure you both fully understand the responsibilities involved.


Once you’ve qualified for the mortgage, you need to have your former partner:

  • Removed from the home’s title

  • Released from the mortgage


You’ll have to pay legal fees to do this as well as some land transfer taxes. Separation things to consider:

  • Joint or separate bank accounts

  • Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs)

  • Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs)

  • Your home and its contents

  • Investments

  • Canada Pension Plan (CPP) or Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) credits

  • Employer-sponsored pensions

  • Cars

  • Pets

  • Insurance plans


Your debts may include:

  • A mortgage

  • A personal loan or line of credit

  • Credit card debt

  • Car loans


Keep in mind selling the home is always an option, but for many keeping the kids in their same school or near their friends is a consideration.  Let us explore the options to confirm if this is a possibility for either spouse.


We can assist with putting the separation agreement together based on your decided allocation of assets. We suggest having a lawyer review it, a separate lawyer for each of you as they cannot represent both in a separation.


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