Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Creating an Emergency Fund, or Living with a Reduced Standard of Living

A couple of days ago, Grant Griffiths (Kansas Divorce Lawyer and Attorney) had another excellent post highlighting a continuing problem couples experience. As he noted, many many couples’ problems stem from conflicts over money – needing more, wanting more, how to spend it, who should earn it, etc. One way for couples to avoid problems is to plan ahead by setting up an emergency fund. It takes some resources and a lot of discipline. Grant referred to another blog,, which is doing a series on Financial Literacy 2007. The Bankrate post had "28 ways to save for an emergency fund" which had some excellent and very practical ideas. Any couple implementing these ideas will really benefit in many ways.

Reading through that list, I was struck by the good advice which could also apply to the common situation arising in divorces, the need to change one’s standard of living. In most divorces, adjustments need to be made because the money and resources originally used to support one household (often stretched tight at that) suddenly must be divided in some fashion between two households. Few families are in a position to split up and still maintain their old standard of living. While not all the suggestions contained in the Bankrate post will work for all families, there are plenty of good ideas that will work for many families. This is a good place to start planning for new financial realities. It’s great advice to help deal with future emergencies, but even more, it’s a roadmap to economic recovery after a divorce.

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