Property and money: 20 tips any married woman must read (part 2).

by Chris Lang on October 29, 2009

Angry coupleIf you’ve just stumbled upon Homeiown, let me fill you in: a couple of days ago I posted my new friend’s tips on managing money and especially property in a marriage (or any de-facto relationship, for that matter). Now it’s time for the second part of Rachel’s tips – what to do when there’s trouble in a marriage.

Life Tips in a failing Marriage

9. If you gave up your job to rear babies years ago, now is the time to put as much cash into your nest egg as possible, and assume the worst is going to happen. If it doesn’t, then that is a bonus.

10. Keep a diary, they make Affidavits very easy.

11. Find a solicitor who has a lot of experience in Family Law. The best way to start is to ask at your local Magistrates Court. Make an appointment with the Chamber Registrar and ask his/her for advice on who to choose. They have years of experience to draw on and will know far more about your situation than you realise merely from the fact that you are there. If you are far too nervous to do this, get in touch with the Women’s Domestic Violence Court Assistance Scheme (WDVCAS). (Even if domestic violence is not present in your relationship, this wonderful group of volunteers can supply you with more information than you will ever need). .

12. NEVER listen to what I call ‘pub talk’. Legal advice from friends and relatives may lift your spirits, but it may not always be the law. ALWAYS stay within in the boundaries of the law in everything you do. If you are unsure of anything, no matter how small you may think it is, run it by your solicitor first.

13. Try to stay in the family home for as long as possible. If you have to, move into a spare room and put a keyed lock on the door. Your partner may try to make this as unbearable for you as possible. It is important that you ignore them. Ear plugs help! Draw the line in the sand and if your partner becomes abusive in any way, call the Police and ask for an AVO (Apprehended Violence Order).

14. GET YOUR PROPERTY SETTLEMENT STARTED ASAP. This can take years in some circumstances but can be achieved in 12 – 18 months. Whatever happens, NEVER settle for less because your partner is harassing you to do so. At this point your partner may try to cut off your finances to force you into an early settlement. This is why you will need a nest egg.

15. Go to Centrelink and explain your circumstances. Take with you all the documentation you can get your hands on i.e., birth certificates, marriage certificates, bank account statements, tax returns, medicare cards etc. They will even give you counselling if you want it.


17. Start looking for a job. Mission Australia is fantastic and will help you organise a CV and even cover new work wear.

18. The Child Support Agency can do nothing if your ex quits his job or moves overseas. You have to be proactive with the CSA, as they do not automatically chase payers unless you ask them to. Treat any CSA payments as a bonus and NEVER bank on them.

19. You may have to live with rellies after settlement, or even rent, but try and buy a new property as soon as you can after settlement. You’ll be able to cut a good deal as you’ll be a cash buyer. Be prepared to down-size and/or move out of area – a townhouse is perfect if you have children.

20. Make a new Will.

Take the reins of your life and move forward . . . onwards and upwards!!!!

And now, my dear readers, I’d love to hear from you – what tips do you have on managing property in a failing marriage?

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