Can We Afford to Separate?
In my experience as a divorce mediator, I have seen that many couples do not go through the financial picture, numbers, and financial repercussions when considering divorce.
Splitting one household into two on the same combined overall income is always going to be a costly proposition. You will now have two housing payments, utilities, cable, internet, and other expenses for both residences, etc. And unless there is an increase in income, you are going to have to find ways to tighten your belt in order to make ends meet.
There is nothing worse than when I sit down with clients and work through their living budgets to find that there is not enough income to support the separated living arrangements. This creates an extra added stress that could have been avoided if some financial planning had been done.
Preparing Financially for Your Separation
As you begin preparing for your separation, take a look at your income, expenses, assets, and debts to help determine what you will need to live on. This will give you a good general idea of what your budget might look like when you are living separately, so you can keep these things in mind as you go into mediation.
A standard part of the mediation process here at Falmouth Mediation is to build out budgets during session, so you can make financial plans for your future. I encourage all separating couples to go through the process of reviewing your finances with us during mediation sessions before committing to any monthly expenses (such as housing). It is very helpful to do some initial prep work ahead of time, but it is best for couples to wait to mediate before they commit themselves to anything.