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Technology How My Divorce Changed the Way I Use Credit Cards

18:38  02 august  2018
18:38  02 august  2018 Source:   gobankingrates.com

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Do you have those defining financial moments in your life? I have one, and it all started with my divorce at 23. My former husband and I were college students who didn’t have a clue about money. We were living off of student loans and credit cards , just like everyone else.

I hated using credit cards and became paranoid about having any type of credit card debt. I still use credit cards , but I pay my cards off every two weeks when I get paid. I ’ve learned how quickly spending can get out of control when using credit cards and don’t ever want to be responsible for

woman looking upward josephine-amalie-paysen-440239-unsplash© Josephine Amalie Paysen / unsplash.com woman looking upward josephine-amalie-paysen-440239-unsplash

Do you have those defining financial moments in your life? I have one, and it all started with my divorce at 23.

My former husband and I were college students who didn’t have a clue about money. We were living off of student loans and credit cards, just like everyone else. Fortunately, we were both working, so although our debt was higher than it should have been, we weren’t completely subsisting on credit.

Read More: Amex Canceled My Card and It Was the Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me

Fast-forward three years and, unfortunately, our marriage was struggling. It ultimately ended in divorce. We parted ways amicably, splitting up our minimal belongings and our debt. I ended up with half of our credit card debt, which was around $800, and my student loans, which were slightly over $8,000.

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Divorcing yourself from your credit card for all but the most essential purchases is one way to rein in bad spending For example, are you purchasing a .50 latte and .00 scone every morning? How often do you shop or dine out and then use your credit card ? I know, those numbers seem small, but this was

Divorce can feel like a giant chess match where you’re trying to outsmart the other person financially. Knowing my numbers empowered me during a difficult time in my life and gave me choices with my money. Read More: How My Divorce Changed the Way I Use Credit Cards .

I know, those numbers seem small, but this was 17 years ago and to a newly graduated 23-year-old, these numbers were overwhelming. I could deal with the student loan debt. It was mine and had helped me get my degree. My real issue was with the credit card debt.

Related: How I Paid Off My $40,000 Student Loans in 2 Years (and 6 Days)

I knew that the vast majority of the spending on that card wasn’t mine, and it made paying the debt so much harder. Every time I had to make a payment toward that debt, it reminded me of my failed marriage. It reminded me of the money mistakes we had made together. Most importantly, though, it reminded me of all of the decisions that I made that had gotten me into this whole mess. Every month, I had a reminder of my failures.

It took me approximately six to eight months to pay off my credit card debt. I was that girl who lived in her parents’ basement to save money. At the time, it was just another reminder of my failure, but looking back, I’m so thankful I had that time to recover financially and emotionally.

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Just how do you head off credit disaster during your divorce ? His credit score dropped by triple digits, and he lived for a year with no plastic to use in a pinch. “That’s one way I like to protect clients,” she says. The editorial content on CreditCards .com is not sponsored by any bank or credit card issuer.

More on Moving Back Home: Why I’m Grateful My Father Refused to Lend Me Money

As I slowly paid off the debt (on my $24,000 annual salary). I swore every time I made a payment that I would never carry credit card debt again. For me, my credit card debt grew to represent all of the negative parts of my life situation. I hated using credit cards and became paranoid about having any type of credit card debt.

Fast-forward another 17 years, and beyond some work-related credit card charges, I have not carried a balance on my credit card since my divorce.

Although it was a tough situation at the time, I’m so thankful for that experience now. I still use credit cards, but I pay my cards off every two weeks when I get paid. I’ve learned how quickly spending can get out of control when using credit cards and don’t ever want to be responsible for paying off debt again.

Read More: 40 Secrets Only Divorce Attorneys Know

Key steps to getting out of credit card debt

  Key steps to getting out of credit card debt Key steps to getting out of credit card debtCredit cards often carry interest rates in the double digits, some of the most crippling in the debt world, so anyone carrying a balance on one should make it their top priority to pay off — even if the big banks' decision to raise their prime rates doesn't directly impact credit card rates, said Credit Counselling Society president Scott Hannah.

Divorcing yourself from your credit card for all but the most essential purchases is one way to rein in bad spending Add up your monthly credit card expenses, along with other financial obligations such as mortgage payments, utilities and groceries.

Sorting out your credit cards during a divorce can set you up for a smooth return to managing your That way , the existing account stays open, but even the sneakiest of exes won’t be able to use the old How will spending change after divorce ? Your budget will probably change as much as your

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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: How My Divorce Changed the Way I Use Credit Cards

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