What do you think of when you think about property division during divorce? Most people would think about assets: i.e., who gets which pieces of property.
Your debt could also be an important part of this process. How you handle it could affect your credit score.
A brief review of credit scores
Credit scores are essentially measures of how likely you are to repay your debt on time. As a result, banks and other lending institutions use the scores when determining whether to give you a loan or let you open an account.
This is important to consider during divorce. That is especially true if you believe you might need to look for an apartment, buy a car or secure a mortgage after finalizing the dissolution of your marriage.
There are many factors that go into credit scores. Additionally, marriage intertwines many of these factors so that your spouse’s actions have the potential to affect your score and vice versa.
How divorce might impact credit
Simply getting a divorce should not directly impact your credit in a negative way. However, there are some things that could happen during and after divorce that might result in a lower score:
- Your spouse might not make payments on joint credit cards or loans
- Creditors might not honor the divorce decree
- Your credit utilization ratio might increase after closing joint cards
- You might have a lower income and therefore have trouble making timely or complete payments
Like many aspects of divorce, some of the negative impacts might be avoidable with appropriate planning and preparation. Taking a holistic, strategic view of your finances is usually the wisest approach.