Tindall Gask Bentley partner Jane Miller says South Australia’s struggling property market is making separation even tougher.
Ms Miller, an accredited family law specialist, said an inability to sell the family home is often delaying the separation process, and causing even more financial and emotional pain.
“Properties are remaining on the market for longer, and this is dragging out disputes,” Ms Miller said.
“When the house goes on the market, many separating couples are also having trouble agreeing on what it should sell for, because there are unrealistic expectations of an appropriate price and the value of their home.”
Ms Miller has seen a massive increase in these type of issues in the last year, and said it’s a significant problem.
“People are trapped in a situation where they haven’t received any settlement money, they’re often stuck in a temporary accommodation arrangement and can’t move on with their lives,” Ms Miller said.
“I have a client who is in her fifties, has adult children and is in a situation where she has to move in with her Mum while she waits for the sale of her property.”
Ms Miller is urging those involved in separation to be realistic about the value of their home in the current market, and avoid prolonging the pain.
“It is recommended to get as much advice as possible from valuers and real estate agents as to what the real market value is.
“it is important to get this advice before becoming fixated on a particular cash settlement, to be able to plan appropriately and avoid disappointment.
“These disputes over property prices are common because people aren’t realistic about the current South Australian property market.”
Tindall Gask Bentley is South Australia’s largest family law firm.