2. Calculate the equity in your house

Your trustee will help you calculate the in your house and decide if you need to sell or refinance it. Your house’s equity is the amount your house is worth minus the amount you owe on your mortgage.

If you have more than $10,000 of equity in your house, you will probably have to sell or refinance it. Refinance means that you will borrow money with a new mortgage.

For example:

House value




Equity (Value – Mortgage)

$50,000 (200,000 – $150,000)

Since the $50,000 equity is more than $10,000, you will need to give your creditors the equity. So, you will either have to give your creditors $50,000 by getting another mortgage or selling your house.

The rules are different if you own the house with another person, like a that you own with your partner.

Matrimonial homes and homes you own with another person

If there is more than one name on the title of the house, the other person can “buy out” your part of the house. This means that they give your trustee the money for your part of the house’s equity. When this happens, the house does not have to be sold, but your partner will own the house.

This means your name will no longer be on the house title and you won’t own any of the house’s value.

If you get any new while you are bankrupt, those assets will be given to your trustee. For example, if you get an inheritance or win the lottery, the money or assets will go to your trustee. Your trustee will use this money to pay your or trustee fees.

You might also have to give part of your income to the trustee. This is called a surplus income payment.

You must tell your trustee about all your assets before you file for . You will also have to give the trustee monthly reports on your income and expenses.

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