In past decades, a traditional family was one that consisted of a single working parent while the other parent, typically the mother, stayed at home. Today, only 7% of households in the United States fit this traditional image, while the majority of households benefit from having two incomes. After years of living in a two-income household, a divorced adult may have a difficult time adjusting to maintaining a single-income home, especially if the or she has minor children to support. Reducing expenses after a divorce is often the best way to avoid financial disaster and preserve creditworthiness.
Reviewing Vehicle Costs
Purchasing a car is one of the biggest expenses in an adult household and vehicle loans are one of the greatest obstacles when it comes to establishing long-term savings. Ideally, a vehicle should cost no more than 10% of your annual income, but realistically,an adult can expect to spend 20% of their annual income on a vehicle. Once a divorce has cut your household income in half, the vehicle purchased during your marriage may no longer be affordable. If you have fought to keep your vehicle during a divorce settlement, it is understandable that you may not want to trade it in for a cheaper used vehicle, but if you keep it, be committed to driving it for as long as possible to save money.
Reduce Your Housing Expenses
Unless you have been awarded a home as part of your divorce settlement, downgrading your current housing choice can help you save money. Renting a home or apartment that is less expensive allows you to reduce your monthly expenses immediately, and the savings can make it easier for you to maintain your household. When moving is not an option, talk to close friends and family members who may be interested in renting a room in your home. Finding a roommate that you trust allows you to keep living expenses reasonable and can reduce some of the shock that many experience going from a two-person income household to a one person income household.
Cutting out luxuries, especially those that involve a monthly bill, is a good way to reduce your household expenses. While many people cut back on certain things like dining out, traveling, and shopping, there are other ways to reduce costs that are often overlooked. Instead of paying a large cable bill monthly when you are rarely at home to watch television, consider switching to a cheaper monthly subscription service. Find ways to reduce your cell phone or internet bills and take advantage of any discounts offered for bundling services. Explore cheaper options for other expenses such as yard maintenance, pet sitting, and other incidentals that become expensive over time.
Get Advice from an Expert
The average attorney who has aided couples during and after their divorce is often able to provide advice for reducing expenses or gaining financial support. The divorce attorneys at Vayman & Teitelbaum realize that finances are a big concern to anyone going through a divorce and we are prepared to answer any questions that you might have. We are available to discuss your needs and plan for your future at our four conveniently located Atlanta metro area office. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.