Upcoming separation/divorce

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Kate1
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Location: Ontario, Canada
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Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby Kate1 » Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:49 pm

I will be separating in the near future. We are planning to do mediation to keep costs down. I have only spoken briefly to a lawyer through my work EAP, so I don't really know how everything will come out yet.

I guess I'm looking for advice, suggestions or comments as I go through this. Here are some of the details and my thoughts. Obviously things may change as we go through the process.

He makes more than I do and will stay in the house since I can't afford it on my own. I have a take home pay of $4,000 per month and he has $6,900. Lawyer said there would be no spousal support since my income is above a level where that would come into play. (Seems a bit unfair since my salary is lower because I stayed home with the kids and only started working in 2005).

We have four kids between 14 and 19. Oldest two are in college. We plan to share custody, likely one week here, one week there. Oldest will be out of town starting in January. Lawyer said it would be as if we each had custody of two kids. I would pay him for two kids, and he would pay me for two kids. Net would be that he gives me about $500 per month based on our incomes.

In our current house, we have four bedrooms and the youngest two share. I'm looking for a smaller 4 bedroom house, or a three bedroom where the kids rooms are big enough for two beds each.

Based on rough figures, I'm expecting to come out with about $200k in RRSPs, half the furniture, a car and about $160k in cash. I'm looking at houses between $300k and $350k. I have a pre-approval for $300k mortgage based on having at least 25% down. I definitely don't want to go that high though. I'm thinking I'll keep $40K in cash for emergency fund, closing costs and furniture and put the other $120K down on my house. That would leave me a mortgage between $180k and $230K.

I figure my monthly expenses will be something like:
mortgage: $1,300
prop taxes: $300
internet: $90
utilities: $250??
food: 500
gas: $200
car ins $150? depends on how it works for kids now with split
house ins $80
RRSP $500 (had been doing $1,000)
car fund/other savings $500

Car is a 2005, in good shape. I want to have $15,000 saved for a replacement in 3-5 years.
Up to now, we had been maxing out our RRSP contributions. I'll be happy to do about $9,000 to my RRSP each year if I can manage it. My company contributes about $2,000 plus I usually have $2,000-$4,000 in overtime paid out at the beginning of the year which I will put directly into my RRSP as well.

Lots of uncertainty at this point, but I have to start somewhere.
Kate

fantasma
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby fantasma » Sat Sep 01, 2012 8:10 pm

Wow so sorry to hear all of this: try to be as civil and respectful as possible to each other so that it doesn't get ugly.

Seek someone you can talk to so that you can relieve some of this stress.

Join groups of women like you in your area.


It really does get better.
Be what you want to attract.

brad
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby brad » Mon Sep 03, 2012 6:50 am

Yes, sorry you have to go through this, especially with kids.

If he ends up selling the house you live in currently, would you get half of the money? I'm pretty sure that's how it works here in Québec, not sure about Ontario: in the event of a split-up the assets are divided equally.

All in all, it looks like you'd come out of this in reasonably good shape. I agree about buying less house than you're qualified for.

Cely
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby Cely » Wed Sep 05, 2012 10:42 pm

Instead of mediation you can also do collaborative divorce; you each have a lawyer but all parties work together. I did this six years ago and highly recommend.

Make sure you take yourselves off joint accounts in writing. Do a credit check now, then again in 90-120 days to ensure you are no longer on any accounts together -- it can come back to haunt you years later.

Divide up household goods equally. In the rush to get out, it's tempting to say "just take everything" or leave things behind. But buying new dishes, sheets, towels, etc etc etc really adds up.

As soon as you can, take some time to get away on your own and decompress. This is a major life transition and you need to take care of yourself.

Kate1
Posts: 90
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:47 pm
Location: Ontario, Canada
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby Kate1 » Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:20 pm

Thanks for the comments. We had our first meeting with the mediator today and it went quite well under the circumstances. We are both being very careful to be fair to each other, because when all the dust settles we will still be friends, and we will still need to communicate to raise our children. We've already warned them not to try to play one of us against the other, lol. They know they can't do that now, but don't want them to be tempted to try it after we separate. Of course, we have to be communicating to prevent it from happening.

Still too soon for a more detailed budget, but it will come.

In Ontario, all the assets are split evenly except for what you brought in to the marriage and things like inheritances or gifts. We don't have any of the exclusions so it will basically all be split. Since he is staying in the house, he will have to take on a larger mortgage to give me my equalization payment.
Kate

fantasma
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby fantasma » Fri Sep 07, 2012 6:50 am

Kate1 wrote:Thanks for the comments. We had our first meeting with the mediator today and it went quite well under the circumstances. We are both being very careful to be fair to each other, because when all the dust settles we will still be friends, and we will still need to communicate to raise our children. We've already warned them not to try to play one of us against the other, lol. They know they can't do that now, but don't want them to be tempted to try it after we separate. Of course, we have to be communicating to prevent it from happening.

Still too soon for a more detailed budget, but it will come.

In Ontario, all the assets are split evenly except for what you brought in to the marriage and things like inheritances or gifts. We don't have any of the exclusions so it will basically all be split. Since he is staying in the house, he will have to take on a larger mortgage to give me my equalization payment.


Wow to be honest this is a great reflection upon you two. Keep this momentum going, you guys are doing great thus far. Try to schedule some time for you to hang out and get some fresh air.
Be what you want to attract.

Kate1
Posts: 90
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:47 pm
Location: Ontario, Canada
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby Kate1 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:25 pm

So we finished mediation and signed our separation agreement last week. Today we transferred the house to him, and I got my payout of just under $170K. Legal costs ended up about $6500 which is such a waste, but much better than it could have been.

Tomorrow I am going to sign the purchase agreement for a new townhouse which will have a closing date in mid December. I had hoped to be moved out by the middle of November, but this place is a better deal than I had found in the resale market.

Purchase price is $298K, I will put down $123K and get a mortgage for $175K. I'm keeping aside $20K for an emergency fund, $3k for property taxes which will be due half in March and half in June, $19K for closing costs and everything I need for the new house (furniture, a few appliances, window coverings etc.), and a bit extra for other contingencies which I can put into my RRSP in January if I find I haven't needed it.

I think I've overestimated some of the $19K for closing costs, but I've never been on my own before and I'm a little paranoid of something going wrong and not having the cash for it. After I get a better comfort level, I can put any excess onto the mortgage.

Things are still amicable enough that I can stay here for another 6 weeks - I'm just impatient. My in-laws (who live much closer than my mother), have offered to come and help when I move if I want. They are very handy with remodeling stuff, but since I'm buying new, there won't be much of that needed. They could certainly help with installing a garage door opening and window coverings though, maybe some painting.

My estimate for budget is still what I posted initially. I'll have to get moved in before I have a more accurate budget. Based on 15 years, my mortgage will be $589 twice a month (to match my pay cycle).
Kate

LeRainDrop
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Re: Upcoming separation/divorce

Postby LeRainDrop » Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:22 pm

Hi Kate, I'm so sorry you're having to go through with this process, which I'm sure can be incredibly stressful. However, you two appear to be handling it with great maturity that I hope will help minimize the emotional toll on you and your children. In addition, it appears that you have been responsible with your money in the past, so that financial security hopefully weighs less on your mind. Kudos on getting through this so far with aplomb. I'm wishing you all the best as you move forward.


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