How to Get Debt Free After Divorce
Get Debt-free After Divorce with these 10 Tips
So, as you know, when you get divorced, both spouses are usually responsible for debts incurred during the marriage. Just like you are entitled to share the marital assets, you also have to accept the fact that you are responsible for the marital debt. Sure, you can have prenups and postnups that limit your liability for debt incurred during the marriage. But just because your name is not on a debt is not a guarantee that you will not be allocated a portion of responsibility. It may not be 50 percent but you could be on the hook for a lot depending on the situation.
So, when you find yourself saddled with debt after a divorce, what is the out? How do you get back to zero? Here are some ideas to get debt free after divorce:
Downsize your home if possible
When you get divorced, you can bet you will not need a house as big as the one you had when you were married. Not especially if you can’t afford to keep up the house by yourself. Even if you won the house in the divorce settlement, consider downsizing (maybe sell) and pay off the debt. Then start over with something more modest.
2. Cut up all but one credit card and pay your balance in full each month.
Too many credit cards and too high a debt limit just encourages you to spend, spend, spend. With very few exceptions, credit cards bad news. Try to pay down the debt as quickly as possible. If all else fails, use one card to pay off the other, then cut up the paid off the card and pay the maximum you can each month going forward.
3. Get your name off any joint debt you shared with your spouse if possible.
To get debt free after divorce, you need to get your name off of some of that debt. This is something you should try to negotiate in the divorce settlement so that there are no debts that are jointly held or owed with you and your spouse’s name on it. This is especially important if your spouse is not very good at handling money and is prone to rack up debt and slow to pay each month resulting in late fees and things like that.
4. Have a big garage sale and sell everything but the bare essentials. Use the money to pay down debt.
Sell off as much as you can from your old life including clothing, furniture, cars, appliances, books, jewelry, and shares in real estate. Sell to the highest bidders you can. Use the proceeds to pay down your debt and get debt free so you can have a fresh start
5. Start a bank at home.
Empty your wallet every day into it as a matter of routine. This spare change will add up quicker than you expect. Use this spare change for groceries and stop charging it on your credit card. This will help you to pay off your credit card quicker and get debt free after divorce.
6. Eat less.
How can eating less help you to get debt-free after divorce you wonder? Well, if you spend less on food, you will have more money at the end of the month to pay down debt. This does not mean you should skimp on your nutrition but chances are you buy and eat a lot of things each month that you don’t need and that adds up to a lot of money wasted.
7. Find a generous, affluent partner who helps you out.
If you have a generous and affluent new partner after divorce, of course, you will have more disposable income to help pay down your debt that is carried over from your marriage. This does not mean you hook up with someone just for the money but if you luck out and find a rich sugar daddy or mommy who gives you an allowance each month, use it to help pay down the debt.
8. Get debt rewritten when possible; or renegotiate the debt if you can
You can renegotiate debt to get a better interest rate for example or to get some of this debt forgiven outright. Call your creditors one by one and discuss the possibility of renegotiating or rewriting your loan terms. It is no guarantee they will say yes but it is worth a shot.
9. File bankruptcy
Filing bankruptcy is a strategy you can use to reduce your outstanding debt.
10. Move to another country
Sometimes, if you move to another country, you will find the cost of living is lower and that you are able to afford to pay down your debts back home and still have a good standard of living. Research other countries you could possibly move to lower your expenses and thus help you to pay down your debt.