For many couples, the marital residence is the largest asset obtained during the marriage.  Whether you or your spouse wishes to retain the marital residence after the divorce, it is important that an accurate value is obtained for purposes of property division.  There are typically two options regarding the home.

  1. The property can be sold and the proceeds divided.
  2. If either party wants to remain in the home, they can pay a settlement to their spouse.

In either case, an appraisal is needed.  In scenario #1, an appraisal should be obtained to help determine a listing price in an effort to limit the time the house will be listed for sale and maximize the selling price.  In scenario #2, the judge will not make a ruling on the settlement or division of property without an appraisal by a certified real estate appraiser.  As to who is responsible for the appraisal fee remains at the discretion of an agreement between both parties or court ordered by the judge.

Divorce appraisals require a well-supported, professional appraisal that is defensible in court.  The appraisal should be completed by an appraiser with experience in providing both current real estate value as well as retrospective value, as one or both may be required by the courts..  A Retrospective Appraisal means the value of the property is based upon a date in the past (perhaps the filing date, the date of marriage, the date of separation or the date of purchase) rather than the current date.  If your case were to go to court, the appraiser may be called as an expert witness.  It is imperative that the appraiser’s value and adjustments made in the report are clearly explained and supported. Our knowledge and experience in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs means that you can trust us to handle your divorce appraisal with the utmost professionalism, courtesy, and confidentiality.  Unless required by law, we will not share your appraisal with opposing attorneys, spouses, or anyone else without your permission. I encourage you to call me directly at (847) 863-5776 for any questions regarding a divorce appraisal or any other appraisal related questions.

Also, see the graphic below that was found in a Wall Street Journal article that shows what you can generally expect during the process.

The ‘Rowe Appraisal Group’ specializes in divorce appraisals, bankruptcy appraisals, date of death appraisals, estate appraisals, pre-listing appraisals and more throughout the Chicago area.

For more information contact us at (847) 863-5776, visit our website at, or email us at You can also check out our YouTube page or “LIKE” our Facebook page as well.  Also, feel free to check out our Local Market Trends section of the website for interactive charts of the latest market trends in your neighborhood.

Call us today for a free consultation.