Relationship End Finances
The end of a relationship is a tough time for anyone, but it can be much tougher if there are financial issues to deal with as well.
That’s why whenever we’ve been in the unfortunate situation of having to console a friend whose relationship is on the rocks, we also gently remind them to get their finances in order as soon as possible.
That’s right… before breaking out the tissue box.
Why? Well we’ve seen what can happen if these issues aren’t knocked on the head early. In some cases a couple may have to let the courts decide how their assets are split up, which takes time, prolongs the healing process considerably and can send you broke while waiting to sort it out.
And while money is the last thing anyone wants to think about when a relationship ends, the fact is it’s hugely important for each partner’s future.
That’s particularly true if you have kids or a house together, or if the relationship is financially one-sided and one partner earns significantly more than the other.
So here are seven things you must do immediately to secure your financial position when your partner walks out… Then you can get emotional.
- Cancel joint accounts and credit cards
First things first, limit any immediate fallout by taking your money out of joint accounts, cancelling any common credit cards and making sure your pay goes into a your sole, rather than joint, account.
This is a simple way to protect yourself against the possibility that your partner does something silly in the heat of the moment.
Also, note the date that you do this, as in Australia you are only able to apply for a formal divorce after being separated for 12 months.
- Locate all of your financial records
Next, it’s time to get on top of your financial situation.
This means digging through your filing cabinet (and email account) and getting a full picture of your financial situation.
We’re talking bank accounts, credit cards, share holdings, super statements and details of all the debts and assets held both jointly and separately.
Ring your accountant, financial planner and bank to make sure you have a copy of everything.
- Engage a lawyer
Unwinding a financial marriage can be a complex legal process, particularly if your finances are complicated.
A lawyer can help you separate jointly held assets and protect you in the event that any of the family assets are not in your name.
They’ll also be a great source of guidance in terms of what to do financially, which will give you peace of mind that you’re on top of things.
- Do up a new budget
Going it alone means you’ll need to adjust to living on a single income, which makes having a budget more important than ever.
First, draw up a list of all of your assets and debts to get a picture of your financial position. Then list all of your income and expenses to see where you stand and any changes you need to make.
- Review your super and insurance
After a separation, remember the insurance cover you have in place (whether a standalone policy or within super) may no longer be suitable for your situation.
So take the time to review it, and speak to an adviser if necessary.
Don’t forget to update the beneficiary for any insurance policies and on your super fund too if it’s currently your former partner.
- Update your will
A will lets you control what happens to your assets when you die, so it’s important to update it after a separation.
Your lawyer will be able to assist you during this process and make sure you get it right.
- Don’t go it alone
Finally, after a separation it’s normal to feel isolated and alone, so don’t be afraid to reach out to friends and family for help.
A trusted confidant can be a great source of support and guidance, and can help you get things back on track as quickly as possible.
GOLD COAST PROPERTY BOOM
Over the years we’ve been public enemy number 1 for Gold Coast real estate agents as we correctly predicted their property crash and then stagnation.
As we always say, we’re not here to make friends but to tell it like it is.
Now I think we could be about to get back into the good books and on the Christmas card list of those real estate agents because the outlook for Gold Coast property actually now looks pretty good.
As we’ve always said, every investment follows a cycle. A boom is always followed by a bust (usually the bigger the boom, the bigger the bust that follows), and every bust is followed by a recovery… it’s just a matter of timing.
According to the respected SQM Property research group, Gold Coast dwelling values will rise 7-11 per cent in 2016 making it one of the best regions in Australia.
We have enormous respect for Lois Christopher at SQM and his reason for the forecast are based on;
. Very low vacancy rates of under 2%
. Rents currently rising at up to 8% p.a.
. Rental yields very high at 6%pa
. Robust population growth of 2.5% p.a.
. Low Aussie dollar will see tourism continue to recover
. Strong employment growth conditions
. No sign of new building surge yet
. Enthusiasm for 2018 Commonwealth games will assist economy
. Prices are still below fair value after the recent crash.
But he does warn that the Gold Coast market is highly volatile, too reliant on tourism, watch out for possible post games slump in 2019 and real estate scams.