Budgeting after a divorce or during separation may be a new concept to individuals who decided to divorce from a spouse. Often, one spouse handles the finances and the budgeting, and this leaves the other spouse to figure out what money is coming in and how much is going out. Budgeting should not be a wait and see situation. Budgeting is specifically intended to predict the amount of money that will be needed in the future.
Within the new living situation, an ex-spouse must first determine what will be the new income. It can be from work, salary, tips, alimony, child support, bonuses, dividends or interest, pension, retirement distributions, and social security. Other income, such as support from parents or food stamps, should also be noted when determining the budget.
Determining the amount of expenses you need to pay each month is the next step. Utilizing a basic expenses worksheet will help jog your memory on what sort expenses are needed each month if you are not already tracking your expenses. You may also use a computer application or program to assist you in this process. It may be particularly useful in identifying expenses you may have overlooked. One aspect you want to consider is whether the amount of taxes you will pay will be the same as before your separation from your spouse. People often forget to include gifts that they anticipate on buying in that month. If you have a big family, buying gifts can get pricey.
Additionally, evaluating all debts and ways to either refinance or reduce the payments may be a helpful way to reduce expenses. For example, student loans may have financial hardship programs or the potential for refinancing at a lower rate.
Income versus Expenses
If your expenses are greater than your income, you will need to prioritize your expenses and determine what can be lowered or eliminated. For example, if your grocery bill is quite large, it may change without your spouse in the house, but you may think of ways to reduce your spending, such as shopping at a low-budget store or utilizing coupons. If your child plays a sport or activity that is expensive, it may be time to reconsider it or ask for assistance with that activity. If your car seems too big after the separation, downsizing the car may be appropriate. Re-thinking ways to lower expenses can be extremely beneficial post-divorce.
South Jersey Divorce Lawyers Help Clients with Budgeting Affairs During Divorce
When you have made the decision to divorce, setting up a new budget without your spouse is important. The South Jersey divorce lawyers can ensure that you receive the support you may be entitled to from your ex-spouse. Located in Marlton and Somers Point, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Camden County, Burlington County, and Atlantic County. For a free consultation, contact us online or call.