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Financial Planning Advice: Is it Different for Women?

b2ap3_thumbnail_Saving-Money-2.jpgInteresting fact: Women have a life expectancy of about five years longer than their male counterparts, on average. This means a strategy for investing for retirement needs to compensate for those extra years. However, while women may need to plan for a longer life span, research says they have typically been less involved in the investment process than males.

While many women do actively participate in their retirement planning, a higher aversion to risk can mean earning less money on investments by the time retirement arrives. If you’re a woman who doesn’t want to follow some of these traditional patterns that may have set other women back in their retirement goals, financial planning experts offer some advice:

First, consider whether or not you’re thinking about your financial future enough – and if not, are you letting a desire to plan for others’ futures get in the way? Many financial advisors believe that saving for your retirement over investing in your child’s higher education is one example worth talking about. Why? Your college graduate might rather pay for a student loan (most are paid off in 10 years) than pay for your retirement housing and/or senior care because you spent so many years investing in their college fund rather than in your retirement savings.

Even if you don’t buy large-ticket items, you might still be spending (and not investing) more than you know. Many men have a tendency to splurge on big items; however, some women shop in small increments that build up to even larger expenditures. Controlling spending is an important step in financial planning for a better retirement.

If you are married and you are in charge of the budget and bill-paying at your house, you will have more insight into available funds. If you fill this role in your family, you will know how much more you could be adding to your investments. Consider this task as a way of determining how much closer you can get to your goals and this will make it even more rewarding.

A final note … saving versus investing. Certainly saving is a good thing, but are you putting too much into savings and not enough into investments that can grow over time?

Gender aside, starting your retirement investments now and sticking with them can be your greatest ally to a brighter retirement. You can’t be expected to know everything there is to know about investing, which is why bringing a professional investment advisor into the mix is a smart move.

One of our areas of expertise is planning for women at Family Investment Center. Our professional investment advisors may be experienced and credentialed, but they’re also down-to-earth. Contact us today.

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