Divorce brings many changes that require much adjustment within a small window of time. It requires that life altering decisions be made that will affect the rest of one’s life and the stress associated with making these decision informatively can be challenging. One area of decision making in divorce is that of the division of assets and liabilities. During the phase of decision making, everything that you have acquired during marriage must be divided, including personal property, debts, and so forth. One decision made during this time is that of the marital home. During the divorce process, the marital home may be sold and both spouses required to move or one spouse “buys out” the other partner’s share and only one spouse will move. The marital home is one of the most sentimental assets of the marriage, thus making it hard to make final decisions.
When the decision concerning the marital home is made, one if not both spouses will need to move their personal belongings obtained from the distribution of the assets and liabilities from the marital home. This is not only a physically demanding job but also an emotional challenge when dealing with the demands of everyday life, divorce and now moving. When children are involved, decisions must be made concerning their personal belongings. If a decision has been made concerning the custodial arrangements this will be helpful in knowing how to distribute their personal belongings.
If one spouse is keeping the marital home, then decisions must be made as to the other spouse’s address, how many calendar days that he will have to acquire personal belongings, how moving will occur such as a moving company or will friends and family help in the move. If there will be a temporary move to a relative’s home or rental property until future decisions are made, this is necessary to know in advance when packing personal belongings for storage.
Mentally preparing for the division of assets and liabilities can be emotionally and physically challenging. Moving from the marital property can be a daunting task, so having a guide to assist with this emotional task may be helpful.
Questions for Preparing to Move after Divorce:
1. Where will personal items be moved? A new home, rental home, all items in storage, part of the items to one location and the remaining to be placed in storage will need to be decided.
2. Will a storage unit be needed? If so, will a climate controlled unit be more beneficial for the items needed to be stored?
3. What will be the date you will move and who will assist?
4. Will a local peace officer be needed?
Preparing to Move:
1. Obtaining needed moving staples before attempting to pack is essential. These may include cardboard boxes, durable tape, markers, moving wrapping paper to assist with breakable items, storage cartons with lids for items that will be stored but needs accessibility, blankets or other material to aid with prevention of scratching furniture, screw drivers and hammers to remove wall hangings, etc.
2. If storage units will be utilized, labeling boxes with its contents and room name is necessary. Determine in advance what belongings will be moved to a temporary location and which items will be placed in storage will help to when packing.
3. Moving one room at a time will help with completion. The ability to stay focused is often limited due to the stress of divorce, therefore, by maintaining attention one room at the time may help reduce confusion, assist in staying focused and aid in completion.
4. Sort each room by contents. This may consist of items that will need special attention such as being wrapped to prevent breakage, determine which items that will be used right away and items that can be stored during the transition while searching for a more permanent solution is being made.
5. Using markers to assist with visual importance may be beneficial. Colored markers with a meaning such as Green meaning GO – go to the new home and red meaning to STOP- sent to storage may help rather that one color.
6. Dividing clothing according to seasons may help with unpacking. Non-seasonal clothing may be placed in an area that will not need immediate attention.
7. Packing basics staples separately will help when unpacking at your new home. As you begin housekeeping at your new home, you will need the basics once again. This may include salt, pepper, flour and can goods, bath soaps, shampoo, lawn rakes, mowers, etc. The expense of replacing staples of a home is expensive, do not forget to divide and pack these items as well. These items will need to be labeled with the green marker as “GO TO” the new home.
8. This may be a good time to perform a “spring cleaning”. You may consider donating items that have not been used for an extended period of time of having a yard sale rather than moving unused items.
9. Before moving your furniture, measuring the space of your new location may be essential to make sure that your current furniture will fit into the measurements of your new home.
10. If a storage unit will be utilized, packing the unit by necessity is a must. You may want to pack larger items in the back that will be least likely needed and items that you may need to retrieve toward the front.
Moving after divorce can be complicated both emotionally and financially. Begin with an action plan and take emotions out of the move as much as possible. The tips above can aid in the task of moving when emotions are at an all- time high.
Divorce brings about many emotional challenges and having the ability to plan effectively in advance is needed. This is where Divorce Tool Box can provide assistance through our online sessions. Visit our website today at www.divorcetoolbox.com.