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Debt Do Us NOT Part Print E-mail
Written by Trixi Neethling   

The Economic decline is forcing couples to continue living together:

After years of warfare and tension at home a couple consulted me last week about separating.

But, when I  discussed how they would divide their assets it was obvious their bond situation left them stuck until the property market picks up.

I finally came up with a peculiar solution.  They divide the house into an upstairs and downstairs where they live apart in the same home.  I then drew up strict bathroom and kitchen rules and timetables.

They are not the only couple who are stuck with one another because of the high cost of living,  topsy turvy housing market, and insecure jobs due to recession.

Relationships don’t always work out, but the global recession is making it almost impossible for couples to make a clean break.   More and more people are living with their exes.  Sadly, it’s the same financial problems that are the very reasons the relationships hit skid row in the first place.

I have spoken to a psychologist who says couples coming for therapy would be in divorce court if not for “financial stresses.”

But living under the same roof is not straight forward either.  When one partner finds a new love interest new ground rules have to apply. More often than not a new partner doesn’t want their lover living with his or her ex, and the ex doesn’t want the new lover in his or her home either.

When people find themselves caught up in a crisis they become paralysed and lose perspective behaving in peculiar ways.

Law for Women is now concentrating on mediating in these situations, working out how exes can cope, bringing dates to the house, handling expenses and simply living on the same property.

The key lies in working out how to make the atmosphere and situation bearable for themselves and the children until eventually the financial setup changes for the better.

My advice to couples is that they shouldn’t just sell their property for a bargain price, as tempting as it may seem.  They need to grow their finances not minimise them if they each want to support a different home in future.  Selling for a lost will only cause more bitterness between both ex partners.

A better solution is to try and rent out your property, thus allowing a couple to split and find two separate properties to rent in the short to medium term until one or both of them have enough money to buy their own property.  

What do you think?


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