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Considering refinancing. Very good chance we will proceed with filing and divorcing in the next few years, if not very soon.

Deed is in both our names. Would like to set up the refi so there will be the least amount of difficulty splitting with her ending up with the house and mortgage and with me having no financial obligation towards the mortgage.

My understanding from what I’ve read on the web is getting the refi mortgage in her name only would be the way to go. If both our names are on the mortgage, then we’d have to refinance again, at the time we divorce, to leave just her on the mortgage. That’s risky, because of uncertainty about rates and jobs in these tumultuous time. It’d also be expensive because of another round of closing costs.

Re. the having both of our names on the deed: My understanding is it does not matter so much right now, because it’s not so expensive to file a quit-claim deed when we divorce to remove my name, and does not require refinancing at that time.

Does this all sound right to folks in the know? I’m in the USA.

My premise is it’s best to be free and clear of any mortgage of a house I’m not living in, but if there is another viable route folks go that would be helpful to know too.
 

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How much equity do you have? Could a home equity loan (HELOC or the fixed amount kind) in her name be used to pay off the current mortgage and just punt the ball down the road for a short bit?

Just thinking aloud, not sure I fully get your situation, but wishing you the best.
 

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Several years ago, my then-husband and I had just refinanced our mortgage when I discovered he was a serial cheater and filed for divorce. I couldn't get approved for a mortgage to buy a new house until my name was off of the mortgage on our marital home. His lender wouldn't approve him for another refi while my name was on the deed. I signed a quitclaim to get off the deed and then he had to refi again, at considerable cost, to get the mortgage into his name only.

I won't make any comment on the advisability of putting the mortgage solely in her name as regards possible future division of assets. That's something you need to discuss with a competent local divorce attorney.

But I will say that, yes, generally if you were to divorce while both your names are on the mortgage, then she would need to refinance to get it into her name alone. And, yes, a quitclaim is entirely possible to move the deed from joint names to a single name, and it's relatively cheap and easy to do if you want to wait until you divorce to do it. You should find out from the lender, though, if they will allow a mortgage in only her name if the deed is titled to you both. Not every lender, or every state's laws, will permit that. You may find that in order to have the mortgage be solely hers, the deed needs be solely hers as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
How much equity do you have? Could a home equity loan (HELOC or the fixed amount kind) in her name be used to pay off the current mortgage and just punt the ball down the road for a short bit?

Just thinking aloud, not sure I fully get your situation, but wishing you the best.
Thanks, @CharlieParker. Thats an interesting idea I hadn’t thought of. We are wanting to refi this time around to get rid of a higher interest home equity loan of some significant size. But, had that not been the case, what you proposed might have worked.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Several years ago, my then-husband and I had just refinanced our mortgage when I discovered he was a serial cheater and filed for divorce. I couldn't get approved for a mortgage to buy a new house until my name was off of the mortgage on our marital home. His lender wouldn't approve him for another refi while my name was on the deed. I signed a quitclaim to get off the deed and then he had to refi again, at considerable cost, to get the mortgage into his name only.

I won't make any comment on the advisability of putting the mortgage solely in her name as regards possible future division of assets. That's something you need to discuss with a competent local divorce attorney.

But I will say that, yes, generally if you were to divorce while both your names are on the mortgage, then she would need to refinance to get it into her name alone. And, yes, a quitclaim is entirely possible to move the deed from joint names to a single name, and it's relatively cheap and easy to do if you want to wait until you divorce to do it. You should find out from the lender, though, if they will allow a mortgage in only her name if the deed is titled to you both. Not every lender, or every state's laws, will permit that. You may find that in order to have the mortgage be solely hers, the deed needs be solely hers as well.
Thanks @Rowan, it sounds like I’m on the right track.

Here it is allowed to have both on the deed but only one on the mortgage, so we can avoid the question of taking my name off the deed at this time.
 
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