Mazlan has an affinity for insightful facts that he loves to share with others.
Retirement Planning Issues for Women
Why is it important to know about retirement planning for women? Aren't their partners or husbands responsible for this?
If you look at the statistics, you will understand why women must plan for their own financial security.
Financial planning is crucial whether you are rich, poor, young, or old. Like men, women have to budget their income, look at the family's mid and long-term security, and plan and invest for their retirement.
Financially Independent Woman
Why should women be more financially independent?
There are several reasons why they should be and why they should start financial planning now.
Retirement Planning for Women - Why?
1. Financial Security for Women
Women must be financially independent irrespective of their marital status or situation in life. They should not depend on their husbands or partners to give them financial security. They can make financial decisions and can decide their own financial destiny.
2. Women Live Longer
Women live longer than men and that has been proven statistically. Therefore, if you live longer, you have to save more! But on average, women tend to be less prepared and usually end up poorer in retirement. They can also outlive their retirement savings.
One of the reasons can be their lower take-home pay and hence, save less. This means fewer pension benefits and savings for retirement. If they plan now, they don't have to compromise on their lifestyle, should they outlive their partners.
3. Too Careful
Women are cautious in their investment options. They are hesitant when making financial decisions. These are also common in men. So women should not feel intimidated with money management. If there is proper planning, money issues can usually be solved.
4. Financial Literacy
Some women and men do not have a proper understanding of their personal finances. They hate it because they feel uncomfortable with the financial concepts.
They can start by understanding the concepts of diversifying their investments to spread risk and investing over the long term. The more they apply these concepts the easier it becomes.
Retirement Planning Guide - Retirement Lifestyle
If you are ready to plan for retirement days, consider the cost associated with the following items:
- Home: Where will you stay? Will you be staying in the same house or will be moving to a new house same location, or in a different location?
- Food: Will you be eating out or entertaining more family members?
- Transportation: Will you be driving your own car or use public transport?
- Health Care: How is your medical insurance and how will you pay for medical bills?
- Personal Needs: What will be the cost of your clothing, personal care, recreations, hobbies, entertainment, and health & fitness regime?
- Travel: Will you be doing more traveling?
Women Money Management
Make Money Work for You
If you delay and procrastinate, this can be your biggest investment mistake. The result depends on how soon you start, how much you save and how you save it. There are just as many successful women investors as men. So why wait?
Follow these few simple rules to make money work for you:
1. Setting Financial Goals
The way to create a plan is to know what you want to achieve first.
Ask yourself what you want from your money. Is it for a down payment on your house, a new car, or your children’s education? Once you know what you want you can work out what you need to get there.
Knowing your ultimate goal helps give you enough perspective to distance yourself from individual investments. It is also easier not to get too emotional or attached to your investments.
Retirement Plan Should be Your Priority
When you choose your new employer choose a company that offers a good retirement plan, even if the salary is slightly lower.
2. Learn About Financial Planning
Read and understand as much as you can on the various types of investments. How can they fit into your plan? Overcome the psychological hurdle that women cannot handle money by getting as much information as you can.
Read the newspapers, financial journals and attend investment seminars. See how others do it. Learn how to apply for your social security benefits. The first time is always difficult but once you understand the concepts the pieces will fall into place.
3. Be Motivated
When you realize how little savings you will have for your retirement or to achieve your life goals, you will be motivated to do something. Focus on your retirement or look at your friends or their mothers who have to cope financially when their dependants die, divorce, or lose their jobs.
At one point in their lives, women will have to face the fact that there is no one else to handle their finances for them. Why wait until then to embrace your financial responsibilities? Start now and make your move cautiously ─ it will pay off in the end.
4. Invest Your Own Money
Not many people are that interested in investing. If you leave it to your men, you will probably have no idea where it is invested. Make it a point to invest your own money. You tend to be interested if your own money is at stake. You are in control of your money and if you do make a mistake you take the blame and learn from it.
A good way to ensure that you have just as many gainers as losers is to maintain a diversified portfolio and stay focused. Start with a small portfolio of basic investments like stocks or unit trust funds, bond funds and cash.
You can venture into other types of investments as you improve in the game. As you progress you can modify and adjust your portfolio to suit your changing needs.
5. Do it on a Regular Basis
Make investing a part of your regular routine. Be levelheaded when you invest; do not jump in and invest blindly. Nor should you sit and wait for that “perfect” investment to appear before you invest. It may never appear.
Generally, investing on a regular basis is likely to yield better returns compared to a one-off lump sum investment. Take advantage of the dollar-cost averaging concept.
Move cautiously and speculate less. Invest more in unit trusts, as individual investors generally do not have the resources to make brilliant stock picks. Put your money in and be patient; do not look at it every day and expect it to grow immediately. Leave it for the long term.
Get Financial Advice
If you do not have the time, cannot get the hang of it, or just want a second opinion, then get qualified financial help. Good financial planners usually have extensive capabilities. They can help steer you on the right course. A good and reliable financial planner should:
- Help identify your problems and goals;
- Develop a financial plan to help reach those goals;
- Help you understand the risks associated with investing;
- Provide advice on investments: and
- Periodically review your financial plan with you.
Why Women Should Plan for Retirement
Get the Right Financial Planner
Finding the right financial planner is no easy task. You need someone who can understand your needs and goals. Select a planner that you feel comfortable enough to ask questions.
Ask yourself what you expect him to do for you. Do you want to include him in every decision that you make or just someone to help you set up the plan and work the rest out yourself?
Check his credentials - does he have adequate skills and qualifications, a good track record and reputation?
By asking these questions, you can narrow down the type of financial planner and the services you require. Once you find the right planner, make him an important part of your financial life.
Take Control and Be a Strong Independent Woman
Despite the many setbacks you may have, be comforted by the fact that there are many successful women around the world who have done very well for themselves financially.
You can either do nothing and suffer the consequences or take control and join the list of successful women.
At the end of the day, it is better to have done something rather than go through life regretting not having done it at all.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2012 Mazlan A
Mazlan A (author) from Malaysia on May 09, 2013:
@Victoria Lynn thanks for stopping by to read and leave your comment. Planning for retirement is always the last thing that most people will do and getting someone to help is a good idea.
Victoria Lynn from Arkansas, USA on May 07, 2013:
Fortunately, I'm single, so I know who I'm going to depend on--ME! haha. It probably would be good to get a financial planner to help me make sure I'm on the right track. Great hub!
Mazlan A (author) from Malaysia on August 24, 2012:
@Glimmer Twin Fan: Your mom is a wise person and you are lucky to have her. I hope you followed her advice and had your retirement plan, planned early in your life. Thanks for sharing.
Claudia Mitchell on August 24, 2012:
So important for women. One of the things my mother taught me is that no matter what, even if I'm happily married, always have my own bank/retirement account and a credit card in my name. If something were to ever happen I would have resources to fall back on. Interesting hub!
Mazlan A (author) from Malaysia on August 24, 2012:
@Thelma, thanks for the visit, the votes and share. I am glad you found this hub informative and worth of sharing. Have a great day.
Thelma Alberts from Germany on August 24, 2012:
Great advice for women. A very informative and useful hub, too. Voted up and shared;-)))
Mazlan A (author) from Malaysia on July 19, 2012:
A special thanks to all of you for stopping by!
@teaches12345 Thank you for your kind comment and I hope it will help others who may need it. Have a great day!
@dghbrh I am pleased that you think this hub was interesting and worthy of sharing. Thanks.
@tobusiness I am glad you find this hub useful. Thanks for the vote.
@monicamelendez I am pleased to know that this hub on retirement financial planning has been useful to you.
monicamelendez from Salt Lake City on July 16, 2012:
I'm always grateful when people take extra care to help women. I honestly don't know a lot about planning for retirement and really want to learn more about it. Thanks a million!
Jo Alexis-Hagues from Lincolnshire, U.K on July 15, 2012:
A very comprehensive and informative hub.
Voting up and useful
deergha from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!! on July 14, 2012:
interesting hub.....sure would like to apply in reality.
voted up and shared:-)
Dianna Mendez on July 14, 2012:
Wonderful! This is such a great hub article and one that will help women in need of knowing how to plan. These days there are many who do not know where to turn, you have done a great service here!