It may not be romantic, but marriage has literal legal fine print.
In the United States, marital property is defined as “all property acquired by spouses during their marriage, no matter whose name is on the title of the property.”
“[…], in most states, if the property acquired before the marriage by one spouse has risen in value due to the efforts of the other or both spouses, the actively appreciated value of the property is considered marital property. Future expectancies or even contingent expectancies created during the marriage are also deemed to be marital property, even if the payment is received after the marriage ends.”— Marital Property, Legal Information Institute, Cornell Law School
Individual property is off-limits from the courts to divide in a divorce. Marital versus individual property can be detailed in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. Inheritances, bequests, or gifts are considered individual property.
Most states apply the equitable distribution method of dividing marital property. To determine how marital property should be partitioned, the courts assess several factors including the length of the marriage, the value of the marital property, each spouse’s contribution to acquiring or increasing the value of the marital property, and a given spouse’s homemaking efforts in support of the career goals of the other.
The courts do not consider marital fault when allocating marital property, however, they do account for financial misconduct, including financial infidelity.
Parting assets is more complicated than simply parting ways.
Like marriage, purchasing real estate is a commitment and, for most people, the largest expenditure in their lifetime. Marriage can indeed be an opportunity to financially couple assets with that of another in order to have enough joint capital for mutual endeavors.
However, innovations in financial technology have enabled individuals with more independence and flexibility in the markets. Actual properties of real estate can be bought and sold in fractions of ownership, in the form of a token. This significantly reduces the barrier to entry into real estate investing, as investors will be able to invest in a property without buying it or financing it in its entirety through one lump sum of a down payment and subsequent mortgage payments.
If real estate can be simplified into investing in shares of a property rather than entire units, then ownership of a portfolio of real estate tokens may become far more accessible than traditional forms of investing.
Tokenization combines real estate investing with the benefits of blockchain including immutability, security, speed, and more. Properties are available at RealT, the first worldwide standardized tokenization platform. Fractions of real estate can be purchased without the traditional financial barriers of building generational wealth through real estate.
More and more investors today are interested in real estate to opportunistically capitalize on market dynamics, rather than to own a property for the sake of dwelling in it as a home. In fact, many savvy investors want geographic autonomy when it comes to making decisions that involve physical assets. Investors may feel more comfortable investing in a fraction of a property instead of a whole when it comes to properties that are physically out of reach.