Do You Need an Appraisal Going Through Divorce?

Do I need an appraisal in divorce?

It's never easy to face divorce, but it's even more difficult when you have children or are dealing with a large or inherited home. When dividing your home, both parties need to know all possible outcomes before anything is finalized. Take a look at everything you need to know about getting an appraisal for your home during a divorce.


Consult with an attorney when deciding to divorce

divorcing couple sitting with attorney

When facing the task of dividing your home in a divorce, it's important to remember that you and your ex should always consult with an attorney when deciding to divorce. Even though you may not want an attorney involved, they can help make sure that all of the necessary steps are taken to protect all parties involved. A good attorney will help you understand the following:

·        The entire legal process and how it works in your state.

·        The financial implications of divorce – how much money is needed for things like child support or alimony payments? In addition, they'll also be able to explain how assets were acquired during the marriage and determine if there are any prenuptial agreements or community property agreements that should be considered as well (if applicable).

·        The emotional implications aren't often discussed but can be one of the most difficult parts of ending a marriage or relationship because emotions run high, and people tend not to think straight at times like these.


Two Options When Dividing Your Home in a Divorce Infographic

Infographic on Two Settlement Options When Dividing Your Home in a Divorce

An appraisal will give an accurate picture of how much your home is worth in a divorce

appraiser working on an appraisal report in a house

When it comes to dividing your home as part of a divorce, an appraisal can give you an accurate picture of how much your property is worth. An appraiser will inspect the property and determine its market value based on data such as housing trends in the area, compare prices for similar homes in the neighborhood, and other factors. 

Having this information available can be helpful when negotiating with your spouse over how much money should be exchanged for certain assets. It may also help you decide whether or not it makes sense to sell your home during this time.

Know how much the house will sell for – it will help you decide

Knowing how much the house will sell for can help you decide whether to keep it or not if that's one of your options during the divorce proceedings. If you want to keep the house, an appraisal can tell you how much it would cost to make necessary repairs on your property and help you determine whether staying in the home is truly worth it. However, if selling is a better option for you financially, an appraisal will tell exactly how much money a buyer would pay for it.

An experienced real estate agent can assist with buying a new home and selling your current one. However, they often charge a percentage of each deal made through them as compensation (which means more work).

Both you and your ex need to agree on the appraiser

You and your ex need to agree on the appraiser. The appraiser needs to be impartial, qualified, and trusted by both parties for them to make a fair estimate of the house's value. This means that an appraisal done by someone with a personal or professional stake in the property will not likely be accepted as valid by both parties.

It also helps if your chosen appraiser has lived in the area long enough that they can give you insight into home prices over time. New residents may not know what houses around yours typically go for because they're just too new there themselves.

Why is a Divorce Appraisal Value Retrospective?

When a couple decides to divorce, one of the most challenging tasks is to divide their marital assets, including their real estate properties. To do this fairly, they need to know the market value of their properties, which is the price that a willing buyer would pay to a willing seller in an open and competitive market. However, the market value of a property can change over time due to various factors, such as supply and demand, economic conditions, location, and physical characteristics. Therefore, the market value of a property at the time of divorce may not be the same as the market value of the property at the time of separation or at the time of trial. This is why market value in real estate appraisal for divorce purposes is retrospective, meaning that it reflects the value of the property at a specific date in the past, rather than the current or future value. A retrospective appraisal can help the divorcing parties and the court to determine the equitable distribution of the property based on the historical value of the property at a relevant point in time

Don’t forget to divide your home inventory

Besides dividing your home during a divorce, you will have to think about deciding which belongings each of you will take. Besides your personal belongings, you should sit down and talk about who gets the furniture, kitchen appliances, and other items in your home. Most likely, you will have plenty of things on your mind besides packing and moving your stuff. In case you haven’t found a new home yet, you should consider renting a self-storage unit. Many use this option during a move since it can help you prioritize and ease the moving process. Once you divide your home inventory between the two of you, make sure to create a list of things you want to pack and move.

Make sure you both have a legal counsel

Before you begin discussing the division of property, both parties should be legally counseled. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and options during this process. They can also make sure that both parties are fairly treated by the court.

If you’re looking for a good lawyer, ask friends or family for recommendations or look on reliable websites. You'll need to schedule an initial consultation so that your attorney can get to know you and your case. Don't be afraid to ask questions before trusting them with your future.

How to cope with moving after divorce?

Moving is a stressful time, and you want to make sure that everything goes smoothly. When moving during a divorce, the stress of the process can be on an even higher level. What you want to do during this time is to create a plan for an efficient relocation that will help you move on with your life. Professionals can assist with making moving more efficient and tasks like packing, transportation, and storage solutions. If you have a team helping you relocate to a new home, you’ll have more time to gather your thoughts and handle the pressure.


If you're going through a divorce and looking to get an appraisal on your home, many things need to be considered before dividing your home. Once you find an attorney who can guide you through the process of finding an appraiser, you should prepare documents for them to review. When diving your home in a divorce, make sure both parties agree with each other on who should do this task. Good communication will help you handle this process with as little stress as possible.