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Tina: Welcome back! I’m Tina Cortez sitting in for Steve Cassar along with collaborative divorce lawyer Anna-Marie Musson. We’re talking about divorce and finances. Anna-Marie, you can’t have a conversation about family assets without talking about real-estate.
Anna-Marie: You’re right! Homes, cottages, income properties, they’re all part of the financial package. Our real-estate expert Sean Mahoney is with us to talk about this. Sean is with Harvey Kalles and is the principal at the Mahoney Real Estate Group.
Hi Sean! Thanks for being here.
Sean: You’re welcome! Excited to be here and talk about my 2 favorite things, real-estate and finance, as you know my background actually isn’t finance, and has burden the cornerstone of both my personal goals for finance and a huge asset in helping my clients, both in good times and bad.
Anna-Marie: Yeah, I really like that. I like that you have the jewel role. When it comes to finance in a divorce sometimes there’s a poll among people to liquidate some or all of their real-estate holdings. What I’m thinking about is cottages, or rental properties, that’s not always the best and only choice is it?
Sean: Absolutely not! There are many options when their multiple real-estate holdings are involved. And a good realtor definitely finds solutions that sets the agreements, but also helps continue to build the wealth long after the divorce is finalized and everyone’s living new lives. I see this a lot when there’s a multi-generational cottage, where both sides want to keep it in the family and for the children, but I’ve also seen situations where a couple has been married they’ve acquired a vacation home, the separation or the divorce was respectful, and they imagined they could keep it but it didn’t necessarily take into consideration how a future partner or spouse would react and sometimes they don’t know what to react as well, you know essentially told or voluntold that they don’t want that asset to be associated with their new lives and so that can be hard.
And kind of back to the cottage example, I did have a client that I had experience with both of those and what I suggested was that consider maybe putting the multi-generational cottage into a trust for the kids to ensure that, that didn’t happen and that the cottage could stay for the future generations to enjoy. So, there’s always options to decide what’s best for you and the solution just take experience to figure it out.
Anna-Marie: I love that you brought up the emotional element to these decisions, I mean we’re talking a lot about money today but the reality is there is an emotional element that we absolutely can’t forget about.
Sean: Yeah. Most definitely! Emotions are tied to most of our decisions and what I find it is when you can be a cool, calm emotion with the right information in most cases you’re able to make the decision that benefits you moving forward.
Anna-Marie: Now, another big question we get a lot is, and this happens a lot among high net worth clients, “Should I rent? Or should I sell?” Because after you get a divorce, you’re selling into this new life and you have a number of unknowns already, does it make sense to rent or sell? And what is your thought when clients raise this issue with you?
Sean: Yeah. No, this is definitely an interesting one, I mean, selling plays a big role but also renting and buying kind of go hand-and-hand. You know when they sold the property, the other spouse is able to keep or acquire it, sometimes clients they know exactly what they want, what their new lives look like and they buy right away and others they need time to adjust and figure things out. So, now our firm we sit down, we go through in detail both your immediate needs and like your future needs and there’s something from a renter or a buyer perspective probably to your threshold which means that you’re planning to be there for less than 2 years, it generally makes sense to do the rent and if you plan to be there for longer than 2 years well it’s calculated as it’s actually is your break-even point plus you get an asset, but for some people of renting is not negotiable but affordability is a factor, we look at secondary markets or a creative, I recently just had a client, she didn’t want to rent, she wanted to own an asset again and we we’re able to find her a great house with a basement apartment which alleviate the cost of the home-ownership, it also played the factor in helping her rebuild back her net worth which is something I really love and holds dear to me cause it’s actually how I got my start in real-estates and ultimately it helps me build my real-estate portfolio.
I welcome people to visit my website at enjoyyourwealth.ca and learn some more.
Anna-Marie: Thanks for being with us Sean, have a great day!
Sean: Alright, thank you! Have a great day. Bye now.