Housing After Divorce: Options To Consider

Many times, housing is the main issue when a couple parts ways. Affordable housing, be it rentals or purchases, is harder to find than ever before. Coincidentally, parents need to consider how their housing choices might affect their children. Take a look at the below housing considerations and talk things over with your divorce lawyer to find out more.

Custody and Housing

While a lot more goes into child custody decisions, where the parent resides can be an issue. For example, many divorce agreements stipulate that a custodial parent may only move away from the area with the permission of the court and the other parent's agreement. Also, in most cases, family court judges like to see the children remain in the same home, neighborhood, and school district after the divorce since it creates a more stable atmosphere for the children. Finally, suitable housing can also come into play when considering both custody and visitation. The child should always be exposed to a safe environment. That means keeping the child away from criminal activity, drugs, and dangerous streets and neighborhoods is important. If you want to spend time with your child, keep their needs in mind as you search for housing after you split up.

Residing Together for Now

In some cases, couples cannot realistically afford to maintain separate homes even after they decide to divorce. In most states, the courts don't prohibit couples from remaining under the same roof during the divorce and after, but check with your lawyer before you go with this choice. Also, keep these considerations in mind:

  1. Make a plan that includes a date when you end the cohabitation. It might be when one of you can afford to move, when the home is sold, or another milestone.
  2. Set out agreements dealing with housing-related bills, sleeping arrangements, guests that sleep over, and more.

Birds Nesting

Some couples might also be interested in a new child custody choice that provides the child a stable home while the parents do the moving around. Instead of assigning custody to one parent, both parents share legal and physical custody of the child while they take turns living with the child in a single residence. When the parent is not "on duty" they live elsewhere such as with a relative, in a rental apartment, or another home. This type of arrangement is usually timed to end when the children get older and have more say in where they spend time.

Speak to your lawyer to find out more about any of the above choices.