Does it make sense to refinance my home in my name alone for more than what we currently owe on it?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Does it make sense to refinance my home in my name alone for more than what we currently owe on it?

My wife is asking that I refinance a home for a higher price than what we owe. We
are both co-signers on the loan, and I am attempting to refinance the house in my
name. Does it make sense to do this? Would a judge be likely to force me to
either refinance with a higher loan or sell?

Asked on July 28, 2018 under Family Law, Ohio


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

A judge would not order refinancing for more than the current loan. A judge might order you to pay your wife a certain sum of money as part of the divorce, and you might choose to refinance for more if that were the best or only way for you to do it, but in that case, you are choosing to do that as the way to make the payment ordered by the judge. Or a judge might order you to remove your wife from the mortgage if you are keeping the house, but you could do that without cashing out additional equity (i.e. for refinancing for the remaining balance on the loan). In my experience, there is no situation where you would be ordered to refinance for more than the loan. As to whether you should--what will be done with the extra money? Does it make sense for you to obligate yourself to such a large loan? That's the issue.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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