Refinancing a mortgage can provide you with a lower interest rate, allow you to withdraw cash or lower your monthly payment. If you’ve changed your name since you took out your mortgage, you can also change your name when you refinance. You can also make a title change at that time by working with your title company or by filing a quitclaim deed, which is used to make minor changes to titles.
TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
You can change a name on a mortgage after divorce, marriage or any other legal name change.
Changing the Name on Your Mortgage When Refinancing
If you need to change a name on a mortgage after divorce, due to marriage or for another reason, the first step is to document the name change. You will typically need certified documentation of the name change. If the change was due to marriage, you will need a certified marriage certificate. For a divorce, you will need a certified divorce decree. For any other reason, you will need an official court document.
Once you have your documentation, you should start with changing your name at the Social Security Administration. You can change your name by mail or in person. You may also need to provide proof of your U.S. citizenship or legal resident status. After you have received your new Social Security card, visit your local agency and get a new driver’s license in your new name.
After you have your new license and Social Security card, apply for the mortgage refinance. Make sure your lender knows you are changing your name and provide any requested documentation. Once you close on the refinance, talk to the title company about updating your mortgage title. You may need to file a quitclaim deed with your local county to show the change on your title.
Exceptions to Changing Your Name on a Mortgage Refinance and Title Change
If you have the required documentation, you shouldn’t experience any hiccups when you change your name during refinancing. You can only change your mortgage to reflect your legal name, though. It can’t be changed to a preferred name or nickname unless you have legally changed your name.
Tax Consequences of Refinancing for 2018 Taxes
When you refinance, you can still deduct your mortgage interest on your taxes. If you refinanced for a lower interest rate, you may end up deducting less, though. For 2018 taxes, which are filed in 2019, you can deduct the mortgage interest that you pay on up to $750,000 in mortgage debt on your primary home. The limit applies to homes purchased after December 14, 2017. You will need to itemize your deductions in order to claim the deduction, which means filing a Form 1040.
The standard deduction for taxpayers is higher for 2018 taxes, though, so it may not benefit you to claim your mortgage interest on your taxes. For example, married couples filing jointly have a standard deduction of $24,000. For most homeowners, your mortgage interest will be significantly less than $24,000.
Tax Consequences of Refinancing for 2017 Taxes
The limit for how much interest you could deduct was higher in 2017. On your 2017 taxes, filed in 2018, you could deduct interest on up to $1 million in mortgage debt on your primary home. The standard deduction was also lower, with married couples filing jointly getting a standard deduction of $12,700. When you complete your Form 1040, compare your deduction options to determine which one is best for you.
- IRS: Publication 936 (2017), Home Mortgage Interest Deduction
- Intuit TurboTax: Mortgage Refinance Tax Deductions
- IRS: Name Change? How It Impacts Taxes
- Investopedia: Top 5 Facts About Quitclaim Deeds
- RealEstate.com: Attention Newlyweds: Taking Your Married Name While Buying a House
- CNBC: Tax Bill Will Slash by Half the Number of Homeowners Using the Mortgage Deduction
Melinda Hill Sineriz is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience. Her work has appeared on Pocket Sense and Sapling. She specializes in business, personal finance, and career writing. She has worked in insurance sales and financial planning, helping families to manage their money and prepare for the future. Learn more about her and her work at thatmelinda.com.