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Managing Your Finances and Looking for Work After Divorce

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Living Within Your Means

You have already created a budget in preparation for your divorce settlement. But now that reality is settling in and your financial status has actually changed, it's a good idea to sit down and parse things out anew, as mentioned in the beginning of this chapter.

As you did before, compare income and expenses, including such occasional items as tax payments, holiday and birthday gifts, and retirement savings.

Now, as you did before, put these two lists side by side. Add the totals for each column. How do they match up? Are you ahead or behind? If you're behind, put a star next to the expenses that are optional or that can be reduced. By how much can they be reduced? Is there any way you can eliminate or reduce expenses that are not starred? If you need help with this, consult your accountant or bank manager.

Sample Income/Expense Statement

Income Source Amount Expenses Amount
Salary (net)   Housing  
Child support   Groceries  
Babysitting   Clothing  
Interest   Entertainment  
TOTAL   House repairs  
  Car  
  Heat, elec., water  
  Children's extra-curricular  
  Childcare  
  Toys, gifts  
  Misc. taxes or fees  
  Haircuts  
  Adult education  
  Vacation  
  Misc.  
  Savings  
  TOTAL  

The sooner you assess your situation and come to terms with your true financial means, the sooner you will be able to take care of yourself.



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Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Surviving Divorce © 2002 by BookEnds, LLC. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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