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How do I get off the mortage I share with my ex-wife?

My ex and I divorced a year ago, and she took over the payments to our home (as I am not staying there anymore). She has been paying on time (as far as I know) for the last year...and she can prove that she has been the sole payee. I would like to get off this mortgage so I can be rid of her...and move on to a new home for myself. The only problem is that she does not make enough to refinance by herself. She is stuck talking with BOA (we live in Washington State) and trying to do some sort of adjustment. She does not understand that this will not remove me from the mortgage. Is there anything I can do to get off our mortgage? I do not want anything out of the house, I just want out. by aleish_577_872 from Bothell, Washington. Jul 20th 2012 Reply


Michael Patterson (MichaelPatterson)
#52 ranked lender in Washington - 73 contributions

Unfortunately, since your name is on the original note, the lenders won't release you without a refinance... especially if your wife doesn't make enough income to support the loan by herself. They would want to keep your name on there to have more assurance that the mortgage will be paid. Some questions that would need to be handled offline in a non public forum would be in regards to her income level, whether spousal maintenance or child support payments are to be received / paid, loan to value, credit score, etc... One possible solution is if she has support from other family members. There are ways to refinance with what's called a "non-occupying co-borrower". Adding an additional person to the loan can help with the debt ratios. Obviously we would want to make sure that the payments are going to be comfortable for her to make and that it is a long term good plan. Michael Patterson, WA Branch Mgr - Land Home Financial Services. MLO 69386

Jul 20th 2012
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William J Acres (William_Acres)
#1 ranked lender in Arizona - 8,455 contributions

The only way off is to either sell it or refinance it out of your name... I'm a Broker here in Scottsdale AZ and I only lend in Arizona. If you or someone you know is looking for financing options, feel free to contact me or pass along my information. 480-287-5714 WilliamAcres.com

Jul 20th 2012
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You have really only a few of choices in this situtation. 1) BoA will modify the loan and release you from the liability, which is not a very likely option, especially based upon your statement that she doesn't make enough to qualify for a refinance by herself.. 2) The next option would be if your ex-wife could refinance the exisitng joint loan with a new loan. Again, you stated she doesnt' make enough money to qualify on her own. If she has friends or relatives that would consider cosigning for her, she could do an FHA refinance with the others being what is called a non-occupant co-borrower. 3) Lastly, depending upon how your divorce papers were structured, if she has exceeded the allowed time to remove you from the loan, you can then petition the court to force a sale of the property, thereby paying of the underlying loan and that would remove you as well. If I can be of further assistance, please let me know. Good luck. Sean Smith NMLS#64458, American First Lending Corp. NMLS#368580 888-779-6500 x 7317

Jul 20th 2012
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Michael Patterson (MichaelPatterson)
#52 ranked lender in Washington - 73 contributions

I think all of us are in agreement that the path of least resistance might be with the co-signer scenario as one of the better options... if that is available. Sean is right in the fact that FHA guidelines do allow for this, although we tend to see them on purchases more than on refinances. In fact, the occupant could literally have zero income and still get the loan approved. (We used to do a lot of these and call them "Kiddie Condo Loans" for parents who wanted to buy a condo unit or single family home for a son/daughter attending college instead of paying dorm or other rent. Then later selling it or converting to a 2nd home... or even gifting to the son/daughter later. While FHA is a sure fire bet, there are costs for mortgage insurance on FHA, no matter what loan to value you're at. Even if you had below 80% loan to value, that MI has to stay on there for FIVE years minimum. That can also have a detrimental effect with added cost to the monthly mortgage payment. Depending on the FICO scores, loan to value, etc... a conventional loan might be a better bet. While Fannie Mae's conventional loan guidelines require that the occupying borrower qualify with their own income for the debt ratio calculations, Freddie Mac's guidelines allow what we refer to as a "blended debt ratio". Therefore, the similar situation applies with a non-occupant co-borrower being able to sign on the loan and help the occupant qualify for it. (What's funny is that I've had THREE scenarios come to me just like this in the last week alone. Many times we know that the occupant borrower has additional income but just can't document it, or maybe it hasn't been in place long enough, etc... many reasons why a co-borrower could be needed.) Therefore, if all borrowers qualify together then a conventional loan may make more sense. We close either of these scenarios in house without brokering them out. We just have to know what investor the loans are going to so we underwrite and price them out accordingly. A good overall analysis of what resources are available will allow a loan adviser to help suggest the right program for her. Side note as well... if cash is being taken from the equity in the home as a result of paying a liability to a spouse as part of a divorce decree, there is no "cashout refinance" pricing hit. If BofA isn't offering any of these solutions, then it is time to get a second opinion. Doctors? Do you concur? Hope that helps!

Jul 20th 2012
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Is it possible to take her to court and have a judge order her to refi, sell, or turn over the home to me?

Jul 20th 2012
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Robert Le (robert_le)
#620 ranked lender in California - 36 contributions

you can refinance or sell the home

Jul 20th 2012
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Robert Hanson (rhanson)
#38 ranked lender in Maryland - 646 contributions

Hello, I have an option on conventional loans to do a non-occupant co-borrower option to help your wife refinance you off if she is willing. (terms of this loan would be MUCH better than the FHA option) In addition, if you are buying a new home, we would be able to exclude the BOA payment from your qualifications as is. (if that is part of your concern) This is a situation where I would really need to go over many details to properly advise you. I'm happy to help with the financing or just give you advice. If you need more information, or a competing rate quote call, email or use my live support button to discuss or get in touch with me. Web Address for live chat or quote is: http://www.loansfromrob.com/quote/ Email is robertlh66@verizon.net and direct phone is 240-752-7549. Good Luck -- Rob Hanson

Mar 18th 2014
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Melissa Stutes (MelissaStutes)
#28 ranked lender in Hawaii - 101 contributions

You would need to refinance in order to take yourself off the mortgage. However, your ex-wife would need to qualify on her own or with the help of a "non-occupant co-borrower". Best of luck!

May 18th 2016
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Michael Diaz (sincityloandr)
#60 ranked lender in Nevada - 60 contributions

You would have to do refinances. We do have a divorce loan program that allows for a couple different allowances. Would need to see both applications and work them simotaneously, at least we could check it out. Call or text me Mike 702.764.3511 or www.michaeldiaz.us

Oct 3rd 2018
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