Dear Female Investor, You Already Know More Than You Think.
Nine out of 10 women will be solely responsible for their finances at one point in their life. Whether they are single or married, the fact is women are living 5 years longer than men in the United States. Despite these statistics, many women are still waiting to embrace their investment strategy.
The good news is that, like most things in life, investing is a skill that can be learned and honed over time. And with women already making 80 percent of the household decisions, they have the power and the financial wherewithal to invest in their future.
So where do you begin? Women have a separate set of circumstances that they must keep top of mind when investing. On average, they have lower lifetime earnings, a greater risk of inflation due to life expectancy, higher healthcare costs and so called long-term care “double jeopardy” when taking care of their aging parents and children at the same time.
For the reasons above, women should take extra care to do more than just save money in a traditional savings account or in cash. While a nest egg or emergency fund is important, not having an investment strategy or retirement account will make it difficult for women to save enough to keep up with inflation. The benefit of having an investment portfolio, or a 401k at minimum, is the money invested grows and compounds over time.
Three Easy Steps to get started:
- Retirement - maximize out your contributions to your 401K and contribute as much as you can for as long as you can
- Talk to a retirement or financial planning expert(Opens in a new Window) about creating a customized portfolio that meets your financial goals while balancing other financial needs such as vacation or education savings
- Start an emergency fund with a goal of saving three to six months of expenses
According to Rockland Trust’s Director of Portfolio Management, Paula Murphy, although women, in general, tend to be less active than men when it comes to investing, they also tend to pick it up much faster. Many women underestimate the savings knowledge that they have and apply on a daily basis.
It’s also important to realize that there are experts out there to help. Don’t let the fear of the unknown keep you from meeting with a financial advisor. It may seem awkward at first, but the more proactive you are, the closer you are to reaching your long-term goals and securing the financial future you deserve.