The saying “Love is grand; divorce is 20 grand” may be funny to singles and those who have been through the process a time or two. But it’s fresh and painful to those just going through their own Michigan divorce. In fact, it’s not too far off the mark according to a statewide survey. According to those results, the average contested Michigan divorce costs just over $10,000 for couples without kids and approximately $15,500 in divorces that included children. Mediated or uncontested divorce can be significantly lower. Property division is a major concern and your Michigan divorce attorney can help secure your future, but clearing your home is something you’ll have to tackle on your own. Fortunately, there are a few to help you spring clean your space and move on after divorce.
Purge With Purpose
After a divorce, simply walking into the empty home you once shared with your ex can seem like a slap in the face. Living and bedroom furniture, home electronics, and even kitchen appliances can serve as good and bad reminders at every turn. So what if your Aunt Helen bought the TV for your wedding gift? Who says you need to let “stuff” trigger your emotions? Assess what you have, decide what you really want or need, and sell or donate the rest. Chances are you’ll sleep a lot better in a new bed anyway.
Sell Off Those Intimate Memories
Go through your dresser drawers, jewelry box, and hidden storage. Chances are you’ll find jewelry, gifts, and keepsakes from your ex. You may still even have your engagement or wedding rings. Unless your kids may want some of that stuff down the road or they’re family heirlooms (which really should be returned in that case), consider selling what’s still in decent shape or can be repurposed. Someone else can make better memories from the beauty and you might be able to put the cash towards something just for you like a nice getaway or educational courses.
Thin Out the Wardrobe
You may be reconnecting socially and maybe even dating again but clothes tend to be expensive and shopping can become addictive, especially when combined with stress or depression. You should always lean on the side of caution when it comes to finances after a major life change. Instead of buying more, look through your current clothing stock and thin it out. Certain items and outfits will hold reminders of happier and sadder times. Toss out what doesn’t work anymore, what you probably won’t wear again, and what you definitely shouldn’t keep. You’ll feel a lot lighter.
Fast-Forward To Functional Living
Even if you clear out the big stuff, the little day-to-day items can still be constant reminders of a past life. Divorce isn’t just an ending, it’s also a new beginning. So why not change your living space to reflect your new life? Hire a good cleaning crew to refresh the windows and walls if you don’t want to paint, or hire a local handyman to paint your rooms with fresh new colors that your ex would have never gone for. Replace the shower curtain, bath towels, dish towels, and even your dishes if desired.
You don’t have to spend a lot to make significant changes. In the end, you may even decide to downsize your home altogether. Just because you were awarded property in the divorce doesn’t mean you can’t sell it. Just don’t jump the gun without carefully considering the pros and cons of that decision. And you might want to discuss those options first with your Michigan divorce attorney.