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Is there a link between housing market and ‘rich’ divorces?

On Behalf of | Aug 22, 2012 | Firm News

It has long been said that those most likely to divorce have lower income levels and less education. While that is still true, couples in a different income bracket appear to be seeing an uptick in divorces, and it might relate to the recession and the floundering housing market.

While the divorce rate has been on a gentle decline since the 1980s, at the peak of the recession between 2009 and 2010 there was a slight increase of about 30,000 divorces. According to media reports, those most likely to split up in that time frame were couples with more education and who lived in states with high foreclosure rates.

While some believe that money problems actually serve as the glue that holds families together during the tough times, when a family’s home is put into the equation, that’s not always true. If a couple considers the home the center of their lives and enjoys decorating it and renovating it, losing it due to financial difficulties would not only be surprising and frustrating, but it could prove embarrassing.

Since marriages often end due to stress and tension, sometimes related to finances, it would make sense that couples who lose their homes to foreclosure might develop marital problems.

According to one researcher, divorce rates among the poor did not change much during the recession, and unemployment among different income levels did not seem to have much effect either. Foreclosure, on the other hand, is the exception for more affluent couples.

Source: NY Mag, “Do the rich get more recession divorces?” Lisa Miller, Aug. 16, 2012

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