Waiting until after your divorce to make changes to your finances is arguably one of the biggest mistakes you could make. Given the undeniable impact that a split will have on your money, starting to plan right now can prevent a lot of costly missteps.
Your diligence in refiguring your finances right away can help you maximize your resources. With time, support and careful planning, you can mitigate the negative impact of divorce on your money.
Make an exhaustive list of the assets you have. According to U.S. News, one of the best ways to protect your assets during a divorce is to learn about what money you have and where you can find it. This is especially critical if your spouse has been the primary financial planner. Find a way to get access to passwords so you can see firsthand what assets you can claim, at least in part, at the time of your settlement.
You will undoubtedly need to modify your budget and spending habits. Do this right away. Think about which of your expenditures each month fit in the “necessary” category. Budget for housing, transportation, childcare, food and utilities. Fringe expenses including cosmetic treatments, TV subscriptions and streaming services are things you may consider eliminating at least temporarily.
Think about how much money you could save each month. At first, this will most likely be a modest amount. However, as you acclimate to life as an independent, you may have more money to save. After adopting a conservative lifestyle for some time, your money will gradually grow. With the right actions, you could eventually consider alternative savings options such as investing.
Divorce can take a toll on your finances, no doubt. However, it certainly does not need to be the reason you lack a comfortable and secure life.