Column, Money Matters

Retirement planning for women

By Kevin Theissen

Planning for retirement can be slightly different for women. Although things are changing, women are still more likely to serve as caregivers, and as a result, they earn less income and benefits due to their time away from work. A 2019 Pew Research study showed that 39% of women took a significant amount of time off work to care for loved ones – compared to 24% of men. Women who are working also tend to put less money aside for retirement as compared to men.
Here are a few financial planning steps to consider:

Talk about it.  It is crucial to address financial matters now and avoid continued pårocrastination. Your financial future depends on your choices now. If you are single, consider writing down your retirement goals, keep them accessible and update at least annually. If you have a spouse, make sure you are both on the same page regarding your retirement goals. The more comfortably you can talk about your future, the more confident you may be to make important decisions when they come up.

Be proactive. Have clear, defined goals for what you want your retirement to look like. Know where your retirement accounts currently stand. Being proactive with your retirement accounts allows you to create a goal-oriented plan. It may also help you adapt when necessary and continue your path regardless of things like relationship status or potential life changes.

Save early and often. Your budget needs to allow for retirement savings, just as you would for a new car or your next vacation. Like any of your other financial goals, it’s important to review your retirement goals on a regular basis to make sure you’re on track.

Retirement may be slightly different for women, but by taking the right steps you will be able to maintain your standard of living “forever” and pass it on to your loved ones.

Kevin Theissen is the owner of HWC Financial in Ludlow.

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