How to change a joint mortgage

Written by kaylee finn
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How to change a joint mortgage
Change your joint mortgage. (mortgage image by hans slegers from

Often when a couple divorces, they face the problem of changing their joint mortgage to reflect the separation. If one spouse will be retaining the house, he will want to remove the other from the mortgage and the deed. The bank may agree to change the mortgage, but more often you will need to refinance. Refinancing requires one spouse to be able to get a mortgage for the entire remaining balance.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Attorney
  • Quitclaim deed

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  1. 1

    Have your attorney draft a quitclaim deed. A quitclaim deed will remove one spouse from the deed to the house, which is separate from the mortgage. You will need an attorney to be sure the document is legally sound.

  2. 2

    Sign the quitclaim, along with your spouse, in the presence of your attorney. Your attorney will then notarise the quitclaim deed.

  3. 3

    Ask your lender whether they will "vary" the mortgage by removing your spouse. If your lender does not agree to change the mortgage, you will have to refinance.

  4. 4

    Go to a bank and apply for a mortgage to cover the remaining debt. You will have to apply based only on those people who will be on the mortgage. Be sure that you can afford the new mortgage payments.

  5. 5

    Use the new mortgage to pay off the old loan.

Tips and warnings

  • If neither spouse can afford to refinance the mortgage alone, you may need to sell the property.

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