I'm separated, now what?
Callum Sutherland - Jun 12, 2023
A budget will provide clarity and control over your finances. Pay yourself first and spend less then you make. Yes, it isn’t easy!
Here are seven key actions to consider when you are starting over after a marriage and your spouse looked after the finances:
Educate Yourself: Take the time to understand the basics of personal finance. Learn about budgeting, saving, investing, and managing debt. This knowledge can help empower you to make informed financial decisions. The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel is a great place to start.
Assess Your Current Financial Situation: Create a comprehensive overview of your financial position, including your net worth (assets-liabilities). This assessment will help you identify areas of improvement and set realistic goals.
Create a Budget: Track your income and expenses, and allocate funds for essential needs, savings, and discretionary spending. A budget will provide clarity and control over your finances. Pay yourself first and spend less then you make. Yes, it isn’t easy!
Build an Emergency Fund: Start saving for unexpected expenses by establishing an emergency fund. Aim to save three to six months' worth of living expenses. This fund will act as a safety net.
Review and Adjust Insurance Coverage: Assess your insurance policies, including health, life, and disability. Ensure your coverage is appropriate for your needs. If necessary, make adjustments to adequately protect yourself and your assets.
Plan for Retirement: Begin planning for your retirement by contributing to retirement accounts such RRSP and TFSA. Take advantage of any available employer matching contributions and consider seeking professional advice for long-term retirement planning.
Seek Professional Advice: Consider consulting with a financial planner who can provide personalized guidance tailored to your specific situation. They can help you with investment strategies, retirement planning, tax optimization, etc
Remember, building wealth is a journey, and it will take time to achieve your goals and your new life. Be patient, stay committed to the plan, and adapt as needed. The plan needs to be reviewed and adjusted frequently.