Five Real Estate Questions for Divorcing Couples

A cracked foundation brings down the best structures--house or relationship. Even if your marriage hasn't progressed to The War of the Roses stage, with his-and-hers square footage, there's no doubt emotions run high around property issues.

The depressed housing market is magnifying that tension. "In an average divorce, the biggest asset is the home," says Evan Sussman, a divorce attorney in Beverly Hills, Calif. "People have lost value on on their homes, and they are unable to sell. The equity they had in the home is down."

In fact, nearly 40% of couples considering a divorce have postponed plans to split because of the economy, according to a recent survey of more than 1,000 couples by the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia. The study also found that 12% of couples have had trouble paying a mortgage or experienced foreclosure.