Moving on with life after a divorce can seem challenging, especially when you are left to plan and manage everything independently. It can seem daunting initially, and you may feel overwhelmed & lost.
However, proper planning and keeping a check on existing and future expenses will help you make necessary plans and stick to them. Doing this will also ensure that you are able to financially manage and continue supporting your children after divorce.
Here are some ways you can manage your expenses better post-divorce:
Be sure to add the household expenses to your divorce agreement
Divorce is a difficult, challenging, and life-wrecking transition. During the process of separation, you will be required to discuss the division of monthly expenses that will be shared during the course of the co-parent and beyond.
The household and parenting expenses should be clearly highlighted in the divorce agreement so that either side is aware of where their money is going.
Furthermore, it also helps in maintaining transparency during the post-divorce period. By having every expense laid out, you will be able to plan your monthly expenses in advance and make arrangements accordingly.
Taking expenses related to kids mentioned in the divorce agreement is always advised. These can include:
- Tuition fees
- Rent or mortgage
- Extracurricular activities
- Health insurance
- Their clothing and educational equipment requirements
The child support payments should be able to cover the food, clothing, education, and shelter requirements, but it is always best to be clear about communication cycles concerning fulfilling the needs of your children.
Understand the direct and indirect expenses involved in running a household
Once you have laid out the monthly expenses, it is time to categorize these expenses into direct and indirect lists. The direct expenses are related to a person and will usually include college tuition, child care, medical expenses, tuition fees, transportation, and extracurricular activities.
These expenses are directly and particularly related to the child and should always be shared between the parents.
If both parties earn equally, it is best to dedicate the same amount to these expenses. In case your ex-partner earns more, consider discussing openly with them about the shared responsibilities and expenses they will be required to take on.
Indirect expenses are related to the home you and your child are currently living in and include expenses such as mortgage payments, health insurance, utility bills, property taxes, auto insurance, and car payments.
These should also be discussed in the divorce agreement, as the splitting of these expenses depends on various factors, including but not limited to the refinancing of the mortgage, whose name the credit cards are on, and how these expenses will be shared.
Discussing these factors in advance ensures that you do not have to engage in frequent conversations with your ex-partner, and everything has been automated after a thorough understanding between you and them.
Consider the costs involved with moving out, renting, or mortgaging
Often, the partners that decide to separate end up moving into different living spaces. If you are living in a city where housing is expensive and getting a locality that’s safe for your kids is challenging, you might be spending more time and money on finding a locality or relocating. These aspects are pricey and will require hefty amounts of money.
Take these expenses into consideration and plan accordingly. If you are relocating within the city, then take advances to be paid, transportation charges, and other charges that can potentially pop up.
You should also take expenses like house pre-cleaning charges and repairs into account as well. Drawing expected pricing on these will ensure you are mentally and financially ready to pay for bills.
Create a respectful communication cycle to track payments
Keeping conversations open about tracking expenses and managing the household better is an effective way to ensure there are no miscommunications and that both parties are able to discuss, plan, and manage the household expenses better.
This is important, especially when you are co-parenting and want to ensure the shreds of the broken relationship don’t start to affect your kids. Oftentimes, ex-couples prefer speaking in the presence of a family member so that the conversation is hassle-free and to the point.
Remember that these conversations should be conducted with utmost clarity and transparency to ensure every expense has been paid and accounted for.
Managing your finances, post-divorce can be challenging without proper communication and listing out places where assistance is needed, especially when you are co-parenting.
Be sure to draw clear boundaries, create efficient and hassle-free communication channels, and lay out a clear plan about the expenditures you will take care of and the ones for which their assistance is required and appreciated.
Through this, you can create a co-parenting environment that’s less stressful for your children while also ensuring adequate availability of resources.