My wife has asked for a separation. As such I have notified her that I would like to keep our house and she has agreed. I began the process of refinancing the home. I’ve had a Free Trade Agreement drafted at the request of the bank. She knows she will also need to sign off on the deed of the home at the time of closing.
We have not yet entered into a formal property settlement agreement. However, we have agreed on most things 1) We’ll each keep our individual retirement accounts 2) We will each keep the vehicles currently in our possession (hers has a clear title. Mine has a loan which I will refinance).
What remains is what we will do with personal property. And, most important what the final sale price of the house will be. I had an appraisal performed as part of the refinance. However, I would expect that I can reduce that based on certain expenses. Things that would have been covered by marital funds associated with the sale of the house should we have remained married and sold the house such as 1) Realtor fees/commission, 2) Closing Costs, 3) Deferred maintenance expenses (we have things that need to be replaced or repaired that we have intentionally deferred for the moment), 4) Other expenses like inspection and appraisal fees. The market value appraisal would be reduced by these expenses (or to the extent we negotiate this) and that would become the “sale price”. That price less any outstanding loans would be the amount from which her half of the equity would come from. Correct?
Now, if I am correct, what can I do to create a binding “interim” agreement that explains the my intentions of refinancing (yet no agreed upon sales price), explains our understanding of retirement accounts, vehicles and that we will still separate personal property (my refinancing and taking ownership wouldn’t bar her from any of the homes contents)?
We won’t likely be able to complete our separation agreement in time for the closing and need some advice on what can be done on an interim basis. I’ve already extended the mortgage rate lock once and would like to avoid that expense again. She just needs assurance she is not giving up any of her other rights after the refinance and we still have a chance to negotiate the final sale price.