Application. Divorce Final Judgment. Mortgage Application Package Complete.

Your divorce is finally final. Now you can move on with your life.

Maybe you’d like to start over with a new condo or house. You find the perfect place.

You begin working with a mortgage broker. In the course of your chit-chat, you mention you were just divorced.

Don’t be surprised when your mortgage broker asks you for a copy of your … final judgment of dissolution (also known as divorce decree).

How come?

  1. If you are receiving alimony and / or child support, you may be relying on those payments to fund your new mortgage payments. And your lender may have to rely on your ex to make those support payments for you to keep your new mortgage loan current. Your lender will likely need to see proof of your ex’s legal obligation to pay, the mechanism by which he or she pays (direct payment or wage garnishment, for example) and your ex’s payment history.

  2. And if you are paying alimony and / or child support, a portion of your income is spoken for and unavailable to make your new mortgage payments. The same is true if your ex is still in your old house with your kids and your name is still on that mortgage, especially if you are obligated, under your decree or because you co-signed, to continue making payments on that existing mortgage. Your lender will likely want proof of exactly how much of your income is yours to apply toward new your mortgage payments and what existing mortgage payments you are (potentially) liable for.

Read more in this WalletPop article: Mortgage Confidential: Why lenders want to see your divorce decree.