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The Importance of a Home Appraisal When Getting a Divorce in Illinois

Posted on in Divorce

Hoffman Estates divorce attorney property division

Dividing the marital home is a large part of many divorces and this is an extremely complex process. Couples typically have three choices when dividing the home—they can continue to be co-owners, one spouse may solely keep the home, or the couple can sell the home and divide the proceeds fairly. Regardless of the option the couple chooses, or a judge decides during property division hearings, it is important to have a professional appraisal performed on the home so everyone is aware of its current market value.

Reasons to Get an Appraisal

You may think you can estimate how much your home is worth but that number may not be accurate. Having a professional appraisal done on your home will provide you with a concrete number you can use when dividing or selling your house. This will also help avoid disputes if you and your spouse cannot agree on the value. If a dispute does arise about the value of the home, a family law judge may order you to have the home appraised anyway. Already having an appraisal in hand can help the divorce process move quicker. The value of homes changes regularly, depending on market conditions and the condition of the overall property. So, unless you have had it appraised very recently, your home’s value may have changed since your last appraisal.

Preparing for a Home Appraisal

When conducting an appraisal on your home, an inspector will visit the property and assess its value based on several factors. The inspector will consider the square footage of the property, the number of rooms, the lot size, and the condition of the property. An inspector will also consider the demographics of the neighborhood, local market conditions, and the utilities available on the property. Although you do not have control over all of these aspects, there are still things you can do to prepare for the appraisal.

Prior to the appraisal, it is important to clean your home very thoroughly, inside and out. If there are repairs that need to be done on the home, you must make them before the appraisal inspection. Even though it may seem like an investment now, fixing things that are in disrepair will greatly increase the overall value of your home. You should also make your house presentable before the appraiser arrives by cleaning up the yard, cutting the grass or shoveling the walks, if necessary. These cosmetic fixes can further increase your home’s recorded value.

Contact a Hoffman Estates Asset Division Attorney

There are many steps in the divorce process and dividing the marital home can be a long and complicated process. If you are getting a divorce, skilled Arlington Heights divorce lawyer Nicholas W. Richardson can help. Attorney Richardson will advise you on every aspect of your case, prepare you for the process, and effectively negotiate for the fair settlement you deserve. He can also provide you with professional recommendations for a reputable home appraiser. Call our office today at 847-873-6741 to schedule a free consultation.

Resource:
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/075000050k503.htm

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