Agent

Mortgage payoff in a divorce

Can split trigger due-on-sale clause?

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DEAR BENNY: My wife and I are in the process of getting a divorce. I am prepared to give her the family home so that our children will not be disrupted any more than they already are. I know that our mortgage lender will not relieve me of our joint obligation to make the monthly payments, but hopefully that will not be a financial problem for us. We have been advised that a lender can use the "due on sale" clause in the mortgage documents to block this transaction. Can this happen? --Tom DEAR TOM: The short answer is no. Federal law permits certain real estate transfers even though the loan documents contain the "due on sale" clause. Let's look at this concept. Mortgage lenders are in the business of making money, and obviously they do not like to allow people to assume a low interest rate when rates are much higher. While this scenario sounds unlikely in today's marketplace, many readers will recall the excessively high mortgage interest rates during t...