Scotia Investments

Financial Learning Centre

Scotia Investments Financial Learning Centre

Money Management Guide - Suddenly Single…Financially Secure

Financial upheaval can further complicate the emotional turmoil associated with separation, divorce, or the death of a spouse. You ask yourself, how will I survive on one income? Will I be able to maintain my current lifestyle? Will I still be able to achieve my goals? Will I be financially prepared for my retirement years?

Many women make the mistake of falling into complacency with regards to financial matters, once they are married or in a committed relationship. Salaries and savings are pooled to allow ease of management of income, expenditure and investments. While this proves to be the most efficient way of managing joint finances, some women fail to keep abreast of how their funds are being spent / invested, or play an active role in the management of their funds. As such, they are sometimes ill-prepared to assume full control of their finances.

Not withstanding, there is hope. Women have proven to be very resilient, and with the guidance of a trusted financial advisor, are usually able to rise above despair and face this challenge head-on. Not only can you manage your finances, you can become a savvy investor and achieve your goals.

Starting Over

Prior to realizing the possibilities of achievement, you first have to determine what resources you have at your disposal.

Determine your monthly disposable income by comparing your income with your expenses. You may find that certain expenses are now more onerous, as you will have to bear the full burden of costs such as mortgage, rental, or utilities. Your income level may also change, so you are likely to have to find ways to reduce expenditure. Budgeting is very important at this stage. Prepare a detailed and realistic budget and determine what your monthly disposable income will be.

Categorize your assets according to their classes, e.g. real estate, stocks, bonds, Money Market investments. Collate information on your loans. What are their tenures? What interest rates are you paying? What is your total liability? Your advisor can help you to determine whether your loans should be refinanced, consolidated, or liquidated, with any change in your disposable income or asset base.

The next step is to determine where you want to go. What are your goals? Within what timeframe do you hope to achieve these goals? Rank these goals according to importance, then ask yourself how much risk you are willing to take in order to achieve these goals

Providing your advisor with this information will allow him/her to devise an investment plan specifically for you. Your portfolio will maximize the returns from your assets, while enabling you to achieve the goals you have set for yourself, within a realistic timeframe, and with the level of security that you require.

Commit Yourself

Responsibility for your success and your future is now firmly placed in your hands. Take solace in the fact that success is within your reach. Commit yourself; speak to a financial advisor you can trust. Create a new beginning, and secure a successful future for yourself.