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Home Ownership and Divorce: An Interview with Christopher Inglese of Inglese and Associates LLC

By Christopher Inglese

Tell us a little bit about your firm and the areas of law that you practice.

Inglese & Associates practices in a variety of areas of law including Business, Land Use, Real Estate, Domestic Relations, Immigration, and Personal Injury. I have been practicing since 2011. Prior to beginning my law practice, I had a career as a City Planner and continue to maintain my AICP designation from the American Planning Association.

We pride ourselves on the boutique firm environment and that our clients have access to their lawyer. We strive to give the personal service that people can't get from a big corporate firm. We have an office in downtown Charleston at 635 East Bay Street and downtown Beaufort at 1011 Bay Street, Suite 305.

What are the main options for homeowners who are going through a divorce?

The main options for homeowners going through a divorce include: (1) sell your interest/buy the other person's interest, (2) ask the court to force the sale and partition the surplus/deficiency (meaning split up the money or debt as a result of the sale), (3) or continue to jointly own the property with one person assuming the expenses, (4) or rent the property and share the income (if any).

How would you recommend that people in this situation decide whether to keep or sell their home?

There are so many variables going into this decision. Your readers should consider factors such as: (1) amount of the mortgage, (2) any equity amount, (3) size of the family and ages of children, (4) the ability to refinance on your own, (5) how close to retirement, (6) other debts (credit cards, car loans etc.).

What are some of the biggest challenges that homeowners face during a divorce?

How to best care for the children in a divorce is by far the most difficult challenge. After the children are properly cared for, far too often people lived beyond their means during the marriage. Probably this led to the stress that led to the divorce in many cases. Avoiding going broke or having to cash out your retirement to get through the divorce is the biggest financial challenge homeowners face during a divorce.

Are there circumstances when it would be best for people to sell their home and start looking for a new place to live?

Indeed. Often times this is a good option and if the parties can agree early to sell the home then it helps psychologically to move on and start their new lives if they are both living in a new environment.

From your experience, do you have any advice for recent divorcees who need to buy a new home?

Downsize, live within your means, and only borrow what you can afford even when things get tight. The divorce is temporary and if you are back in the game and have the money to spend later on down the road, then by all means go for it. But for people of average means, their lifestyle will substantially change during and after the divorce, at least for some time.

What's the best way for people to contact you and your firm?

We love to have people call us at 843-277-9785. When you call, we will offer you a free consultation and want to schedule an appointment that is convenient for your readers. Please call anytime and we will give you a free 30-minute consultation. We are located at 635 East Bay Street Charleston, SC 29401 and at 1011 Bay Street Suite 305 Beaufort, SC 29902. Also check us out on the web at www.ingleseandassociates.com and on Facebook.

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About The Author

Christopher Inglese has been a practicing lawyer since 2011.

Phone: 843-277-9785

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