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Boost Your Financial Confidence

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When Sir Francis Bacon wrote “knowledge is power” he could have been talking about women going through divorce. Especially if he had said “financial knowledge.”

Too often women wish they had taken the time before divorce negotiations became a reality to get a better sense of their financial picture, including expenses, debt and investments. That said, it’s never too late to take control of your financial situation. When you understand your finances, you can face divorce with confidence and more accurately plan for the future.

All women — whether happily married, contemplating divorce or newly single — can benefit from the following financial to-do list.

1. Determine How Much Money Is Coming In
This total will include your income, your spouse’s income, any investment income such as dividends, potential bonuses, tax refunds, monetary gifts, etc. Getting a total sum will help you determine how much could be yours to work with after the split.

2. Calculate Your Household Expenses
How much money is going toward housing, utilities, credit card bills, college funds, retirement savings and other expenses? Your household expenses will change post-divorce, but it’s important to understand how your joint money is being spent now to get a sense of what you’ll spend in the future.

3. Reconnect with Professionals
Make sure you have a relationship with your family’s accountant, estate attorney, insurance broker, and any other professionals you’ve employed jointly with your spouse. If divorce doeshappen, you may need information/advice from them. Your conversations with us(your financial firm) will be an important touchstone as you weigh the division of financial assets.

4. Check Your Credit Reports
A divorce often means splitting assets such as your home, retirement accounts and investments. In the process, you may find that you will need to refinance an existing mortgage, structure a new mortgage, apply for your own credit card, get a new auto loan, etc. Determining you have a solid credit rating ahead of timewill help ensure you get the best rates and give you enough time to correct any errors.

5. Check Your Health Insurance
If you’re on your spouse’s employer-sponsored health insurance policy, call the benefits department or insurance carrier to determine how long your coverage will continue so you can make any change in a timely, cost-efficient way.

    A solid understanding of your current financial picture can give you the confidence you need to make sound decisions during a divorce and throughout the rest of your life. As you navigate this major life milestone, give me a call at 845-627-8300 if I can help in any way.

    Beth Blecker

    Beth Blecker

    Financial Life Planner and Author

    One of my greatest pleasures is the ability to help women get their finances under control after a major life transition, like a divorce, death of a spouse, changing careers, or becoming a caregiver. Also I enjoy mentoring young women entering financial planning. They need the support and guidance of women like me, who have been through some of the trials and errors of succeeding in a male-dominated business. Helping women so they may be able to live the life they love, just like I do, is so rewarding.

    We will provide you useful and timely information you can use to be #financiallyfearless