By: Amanda Coggin
When it comes to dealing with money coming in and money going out, single moms are best prepared when they’re at the top of their financial games. I know that I had a lot of questions around money once I graduated from my home with my single mom, and still even later when I graduated from college. I spoke with Jennifer Hartman, a financial planner/investment advisor with Greenleaf Financial Group in Los Angeles about ten money tips for single moms. She spoke on how preparing kids and talking to them not only helps mothers, but teaches their kids important lessons along the way.
1. Know your budget.
Hartman said that moms should know both their fixed and variable expenses, so that they can make prudent decisions in life.
2. Know your money.
Is your money in different accounts, do you know where you 401K/IRA is invested, and once where, what your 401K/IRA is invested in? Hartman said that single moms need to make sure they’re taking care of their retirement. Hartman said that contributing regularly to your 401K/IRA is a must for success for the mothers and their children later in life.
3. Cover your assets.
Hartman also said that there are important points to keep in mind when dividing your assets from your partner.
4. Work your assets and save.
How will your assets produce income and will it require capital to maintain? Also, spending less is the best step to saving more.
5. Your lawyer knows.
If you are getting divorced, hire an attorney and make sure you get what you deserve now.
6. Teach your children well.
This is true especially around money. My single mom struggled a lot with money and I never remember my parents sitting down to teach me a thing. It took a few stumbles (and I’m still learning) until I understood what was necessary, and sometimes I still am not sure I’m on track. Explaining why we can and cannot afford things, allowance and credit card debt are just a few places to start. “Parents tend not to talk to children about money and I think that’s a mistake. Resources are more limited with single moms and teaching the kids lets them be active participants in making decisions. They feel a sense of power since everyone gets a say in it,” Hartman said.