Divorce can certainly complicate finances, especially because spouses go from supporting one household to two. This means double the rent or mortgage, double the utilities, and having to buy new furniture all over again. Spouses also lose insurance discounts because they are no longer “married” and sharing a policy. Often, divorce means a spouse’s finances are turned upside-down. It can lead to major changes, such as:
- A former spouse goes back to school.
- The former spouse is now paying child support.
- The former spouses are now paying for childcare so they can both work.
- A stay-at-home-parent has to dust off their resume.
- The exes sell their home and each downsize to a condo or apartment.
- One of them now has to pay spousal support.
- The exes have to write a whole new budget for themselves.
While the above scenarios may bring negative connotations, we must not forget that if the divorce was for the best, there are a lot of positives as well, such as freedom from being in a hollow marriage, and being able to start fresh.
Stressed About Life After Divorce?
If you’re stressed about life after divorce, we understand and what you’re feeling is only normal. The good news is that though what you’re going through may be distressful, by taking the right actions, you can help this transition be smoother than you expected.
Here’s our advice on how to get back on your feet after a divorce:
- Create a post-divorce budget asap.
- Live within your means and pay your bills on time.
- Treat your former spouse with respect. This will make everything easier.
- Follow all family law court orders and if something is impractical, go to court and apply for a modification.
- Check back with your divorce attorney to make sure that any loose ends are tied up.
- If you have a home together, seriously consider selling the house and splitting the proceeds. This is the best way to make a clean break.
- Focus on your income. If it needs to be more, find creative ways to increase it.
- Watch your credit before, during and after the divorce. Close all joint accounts and cut your financial ties with your ex so they can’t harm your FICO score.
- Focus on YOU. After a divorce is an ideal time to eat right, exercise and get into the best shape of your life. Exercise is one of the best stress relievers out there.
- If you have kids, shower them with loads of love and affection and spend lots of quality time with them.
- Avoid sharing any information about your divorce on social media. Believe us, you don’t want the headache.
Related: Protecting Yourself in a Divorce