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Please help me plan to manage practically on my own.

(5 Posts)
HotBrickOfJizz Sun 04-Nov-12 10:55:18

(I have posted about DH under a different posting name a few months ago and was really grateful for the support from the lovely women on this board, and still feel guilty because I eventually disappeared from the thread. I suppose I wasn't completely ready to move forward and leave him then, but I hope that I am now.)

I will be separating from 'D'H in the next couple of months, don't really want to speak about the reasons for this but be assured he is a bellend and I have to manage this separation in a planned way in order to achieve the best outcome in the future for DS and I (DH is very unreliable with money and I want his name off everything, rather than risk being impacted on by any debts he runs up in the future).

I can take H's name off the joint mortgage in January. He has agreed to doing this and hopefully he won't change his mind before then. My mum has agreed to put her name to the mortgage instead as a temporary arrangement so that I can continue to stay in the house. I will continue to pay the mortgage alone, which I do already.

I have my own bank account. This account pays all the bills and always has done. We have a joint account which H's wages go into. H is a low earner and his wages cover food/petrol/clothes for DS - anything that isn't a bill. Should I take my name off this account now? I am worried that H will just spend up to the overdraft limit if I wasn't behind him managing the account, and I would be clearing the overdraft but getting nowhere forever.

DS is 7 months old and my mum provides childcare (she is a brilliant support). I work 30 hours per week condensed into 3 days. I earn 1300 per month after deductions. Household bills which can't be reduced any further at the moment come to about 1200 per month. I'm going to have to get a second job aren't I? Really don't want to sell up and move back to my parent's house. I don't think I'm entitled to child tax credit because my income was just over the threshold until earlier this year when I went on maternity leave.

Please tell me what I need to know and what are the important things for me to do? I hope I don't sound too cold about all of this, I'm really not, I just want to make sure my son has a stable future.

tribpot Sun 04-Nov-12 11:20:10

Right, some immediate thoughts.

You should talk to your bank about dissolving the joint account that your DH is paid into. It sounds as if your DH is aware of your plan to sever finances so it should not come as a surprise to him, but worth getting an understanding from the bank first of how one owner of a joint account opts out. At minimum remove the overdraft and ensure both parties are required to consent before any credit facilities are added to the account.

Spend some time on a financial health check to make sure there are no liabilities which could fall to you. Get your credit reports and make sure all looks to be in order. One advantage of moving would be to dissociate you from another person at the same address with a bad credit history, esp if he chooses to continue to receive post there for a period of time.

I assume you've talked to the bank about including your mum on the mortgage; I have a feeling this will not be totally straight forward.

You will be entitled to a council tax reduction but you are still living very close to your margins. I would get yourself to a benefits advice clinic (your local GP surgery probably knows where it is, if you can't see it on your council website) and the Turn2Us website (used to be Entitled To). Can you increase your hours? You may not want to be away from your ds more than you already are but this isn't really a luxury you have. Although you may not have debts, you may find doing a Statement of Affairs helps to highlight any areas where you could trim things further. Plenty of thrifty MNers who will have advice in this area, and the Fool has a board called Living Below Your Means (there are similar boards on the MoneySavingExpert forum as well).

Selling up and moving back to your parents may be a more sensible option in the medium term but even if you wanted to do it (which I appreciate you don't) it's not cost-free, and you have to pay the mortgage in the meantime. Is there an option to rent it out whilst you move in with your parents temporarily?

You need to be cold, and practical. This isn't a time to try to be nice.

HotBrickOfJizz Sun 04-Nov-12 11:33:52

Thanks Tribpot.

The bank are aware and have said that transferring the name will include doing a credit check on DM and sending out a document for H, DM and I to sign. And a £150 admin charge. I was quite surprised as I expected the process to be more complicated than this. I understand that it is important to remove H from the land registry docs as well?

I can't rent the house out unfortunately, it is in a fairly poor state of repair at the moment, I bought it to do up over time. Whilst it is functional (ish) and liveable for DS and I, it couldn't be rented.

If I got an extra shift a week with a second employer, I would hope that I could combine this income with the council tax reduction, and other savings such as not having to pay for H's car insurance or contract phone. I use a lot of diesel for work but can do a cheap food shop and I am resourceful in finding cheap second hand clothes. It's very doubtful that I would receive any child maintenance without going through CSA and couldn't count on this for months and months anyway.

I would still feel anxious, even with his name off the mortgage, that he could somehow build up debts which could lead to me losing the house, or could try to make me 'buy him out' although he's never contributed.

Mum2Fergus Sun 04-Nov-12 11:34:15

I can only advise re bank ac...all banks will normally require any overdraft to be paid in full before removing either of the joint parties. Once OD repaid you'll both need to sign to have you removed as a party to the ac.

Hatpin Sun 04-Nov-12 16:53:00

My net income is around the same and I get 230 tax credit per month. Not sure why you think you would not get anything? You would have been assessed as a couple up til now so it would have been your joint income, which might explain why you were on the threshhold.

Another thought - if your house is big enough could you let a room out once you are on your own? You can earn a certain amount tax free each year by renting a room out. Or could you downsize a bit?

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