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Post-Divorce Parenting: Pros and Cons of Nesting Plans

One of the things that divorcing couples have to think about is keeping the family home for the sake of the children. For some children, the family residence gives them a semblance of home, especially if it’s the only place they’ve known since they were born. Children often find it hard to deal with change, more so with divorcing parents. Keeping the family home allows them to cope with these new changes in their lives. 

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What is Post-Divorce Nesting Plans?

In Canada, nesting plans are not new. A couple from Edmonton gained popularity back in 2013 when they created a “transporter” house that allows them to come in and out of the house for their children. Similar to a bird’s nest, divorced couples live together separately for the sake of the children. Family models like these minimize the disruption divorce brings to the kids. 

How Does it Work?

Nesting works this way: 

When the mother has to spend time with the kids, the father will move to the other home until it is his time with the children. When it is the father’s parenting time, the mother will move out and stay in the rented space. As the parents come in and out, the children remain in the marital home. It is easier for kids to adjust. 

While nesting sounds simple, it is rather complicated. Nesting plans are not a substitute for a parenting plan. Divorcing couples still have to work out the parenting days, weekends and holidays, and expenses. Before you decide if this post-divorce parenting style will work for your family, it is essential to talk with divorce lawyers in Vancouver BC.

The Pros of Nesting Plans


Some consider nesting plans as the transition stage – a time when kids can adjust to having limited time with each of their parents. Abruptly removing them from the family home can cause them to have trauma. Nesting plans somehow ease them out of the house. It is like parents wait for their children to be ready to move out. It could also be a time when you explain to your toddler about the divorce and what the future for them will be. For older children, they may need time to adjust to the new set up. For instance, they’re not yet ready to move out of town and leave their friends behind. Divorce can be traumatic for children, and during this time, they need all the support they can from their friends, so this event will not affect their future relationships. 


It will be a lot cheaper for couples to maintain a home and rent a small apartment. Some couples even stay with their friends and relatives when it is not their parenting day with their kids. Since they have to share with the expenses, it can be additional monthly savings for each parent. Couples are also freed from the pressure of deciding whether to sell the house. 

The Cons of Nesting Plans


Often, couples find it hard to move on from the divorce. Ideally, divorcing means uncoupling. When you’re nesting with your kids in your family home, there is still an emotional connection to the house. For instance, when you sleep in the master bedroom and your ex-wife forgot to change the sheets, it can bring back old and painful memories. There is also an issue of privacy. What if your former partner brings an item owned by their new flame? Also, a poorly thought-out nesting plan can have problems when the other partner wishes to stop the setup. How do you end it?


There are also consequences when it comes to finances. When you divorce and sell your family home, you have a clean slate, and you can start over again. However, with a marital home still co-owned, it can be challenging to assign who gets to pay the bills, who is responsible for the repairs, and who shoulders the taxes. 

A divorce takes many adjustments, not only for the children but for couples as well. Coming up with a plan that makes it easier for everyone is the best way to do it.