You never planned on divorce being part of your financial planning. But, now that you are in the process of divorcing (or recently divorced) it’s best for you to adapt to this change in your life and take positive actions to take control of your financial future.
There are many simple things you can do to take your life back again and start to move on. Here are five very important steps to financial freedom after a divorce.
It’s time to get organized and assess your finances. Gather information on your credit card balances, mortgages, bank accounts, tax returns, car payments and retirement savings. You may have some of these records only online and some only in the old-fashioned form – on paper. Either way, create a place where you store them all on your computer and in folders.
TIP: Create a spreadsheet with all of your online accounts with login information.
If you haven’t peeked at your credit report in a while now is the time to dive in. There are many services that will let you check and then monitor any changes to your accounts. If a credit card payment is missed or worse a mortgage payment the agency will let you know right way.
TIP: Checking your own credit won’t impact it negatively in any way.
It’s time to begin separating your finances from your ex-spouse. Open a bank account in your name. If you’re planning on changing your last name back to your maiden name you will still need to open the account in your married name until you do that legally.
TIP: Staying with the same bank may help you in the long run because of your track record of doing business with it.
To avoid misunderstandings and conflict create a shared spreadsheet that is used as a record of your and your ex-spouse’s spending and expenses relative to your children. If your ex-spouse won’t share or take part in this process, you can still keep accurate records of your expenses. This discipline is a good one to develop for financial success.
TIP: Websites like Our Family Wizard are a great way to communicate in high-conflict co-parenting situations. https://www.ourfamilywizard.com