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House Divorce

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Mark Cappel
UpdatedFeb 2, 2010
I'm getting a divorce. What is the cheapest way to refinance my house?

Filing for divorce. I need advice on the least-expensive way to have the mortgage on my house put solely in my name without having to come up with the closing costs.

Other than a refinance, there are no viable options to remove your name from your current house mortgage. Your lender is not likely to voluntarily remove your name from the mortgage because the lender wants as many people to have liability for the mortgage as possible.

Divorce and house debt

A mortgage is formed by contract. A divorce decree does not trump the contract terms in a loan. The contract was agreed to when the loan was signed by you and your spouse. The divorce did not rewrite the contract. You may ask, "But doesn't the divorce decree trump the loan contract?" No, it does not. Unless a court actually enters into an agreement to change its terms, an existing agreement remains in effect regardless of a subsequent divorce decree. The divorce is a new agreement between the spouses regarding their financial responsibilities, but it is not binding on third parties.

Regarding your question, this is one area in life where shopping is indeed the solution to your problem. Compare the terms of your current loan with those of any refinance offered to make sure that the new terms are competitive with those of your previous loan. Some lenders have higher closing costs on mortgage refinances than others.

To learn more about refinance loans, I encourage you to visit the home refinance page. See the mortgage refinance savings center to get no-cost loan offers from pre-screened lenders.

I hope the information provided helps you Find. Learn. Save.




BBill, Feb, 2010
Go to, and get a copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies. If the mortgage is on your credit reports then you know your ex-spouse has not refinanced. However, the mortgage company (bank) may not report your mortgage to the three credit reporting agencies, so the credit report test is not definitive. Another unreliable means is by entering the property address into Zillow. Zillow bases its data on public information, which may or may not be accurate. The best way is to call the mortgage company. If you are still on the account you will be able to get whatever information you wish about the loan from the customer service representative. If you are not on the loan, the CSR will not give you the time of day. What can you do if she has not refinanced? You can sue her for breach of contract, but that is an extreme response. Ask your ex-spouse or her attorney why a refinance has not been completed, and if she has not acted out of laziness, then suggest that a lawsuit is within your rights. If she has not refinanced because the value of the property is less than the loan balance and she cannot secure a refinance, then a lawsuit would be a pointless exercise.
BBrooke J. Meyers, Feb, 2010
Ex-wife was awarded house in final decree,but was ordered to refinance in her own name after she received a quit claim signed by me,which was also court ordered.How can I find out if she has followed through with her end of the court order?As of march23,2009 she had not.What can be done about this matter?Thanks Brooke