Valuing the Marital Home

For most couples, the home is the most valuable asset. As such, when a marriage ends in divorce, it also tends to become the focus of much contention. The financial value aside, however, an attorney with Smith Strong will tell you that disposition of the home can be quite problematic.Richmond Family Law Office

The Difficulty With Appraising the Home
When determining the value of the marital estate, your family law attorney needs to have the home appraised. However, anyone who has ever sought a home appraisal can attest that there is nothing exact about this procedure. Often it becomes necessary to obtain several appraisals, and they may all conflict with each other. Ultimately the only way to truly assess the value of a home is to simply sell it. This, though, often is not an issue that the divorcing couple can agree to.

Non-Material Value of the Home
The reason that a home sale is often eschewed by one of both parties is that the financial value of a home only tells a part of the story. The home has value that goes beyond the material. For most people, one’s home is a refuge from the cares of the world and the only place one can go to escape from the stress of life. In this way, people form strong emotional attachments to their homes.

The home also represents self-worth, a degree of achievement, pride and social status. It may be the last vestige that binds a separating couple together. Those who spend a significant amount of time in its upkeep or decoration also feel a bond toward the home for this reason.

The Home Can Be a Burden As Well
As anyone who has spent away endless weekends on keeping the home presentable can tell you, a home can be as much a burden as a blessing. Indeed, while in recent decades the home has come to be seen as one of the most sound investments one can make, it is not always treated this way. People tend to maintain the home for their own emotional purposes rather than to develop it in order to obtain the biggest payout possible upon selling it. This, then, is another factor which makes valuing of the home difficult.