This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/Prudential.
Most people dream of a retirement that looks vastly different than their current life. But my dream is to keep on doing exactly as I have been. My job happens to be doing the very thing that I love; traveling across the US, and around the world - and sharing those adventures with people who love to do the same, or desperately wish that they could and are living vicariously through my adventures.
It's no secret that I travel every chance I get, with a healthy savings account dedicated expressly for those purposes. But the reality is that if I want to do this well into my golden years, it's crucial to think ahead & plan for my retirement days. Fortunately for me, I worked for a financial advisor in my early 20's and I KNOW how important planning for retirement is. If I want to continue this lifestyle, well, I have to plan ahead.
As a single woman, I'm responsible for all areas of money management in my life, so I was surprised to discover that for as many roles and responsibilities we women have within the home...we're still falling far behind men when it comes to taking charge of our finances. On average, women have 30% lower retirement balances than men.1 As someone who has gone through a financially devastating divorce first-hand, it worries me that women aren't being proactive enough in creating an independent financial future. Marriage patterns have changed over the last few decades, and as you can see from my personal life, divorce has become more prevalent with women becoming - and choosing to stay - single later in life.
But even if you beat the statistics and remain happily married into your retirement years, there is still a real paradox to face. Women retire with only 67% of the wealth of men, and yet they live 5-6 years longer than men do.2 According to the Financial Experience study it's not that women don't care about financial security. In fact, their most important goal is the same as mine: having enough money to maintain their lifestyle through retirement.
For a variety of reasons, women find discomfort in dealing with long-term retirement investments. They also tend to feel as feel they do not have enough time for financial planning. On average, women in the U.S. spend 28 hours per week on household chores – 65 percent more than the average for men.3 That, coupled with the fact that women often earn only 79% to that of their male counterparts which gives them less to invest and you can start to see the problem.4 These challenges, combined with behavioral inhibitors, mean that many women are unprepared for their financial future. But I believe that women can AND should take control of their finances.
Prudential wants to help women educate themselves about these issues, so that they can prepare and protect themselves. Their goal is to empower women with financial solutions to take care of themselves and their families into the futures. It's as simple as contacting a Prudential advisor to help get you started on your journey.
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- Source: Prudential Retirement analysis reflecting defined contribution plan balances of Prudential record-kept plans as of December 31, 2015
- Source: Prudential Retirement analysis; National Center for Health Statistics, Health, United States, 2015: With Special Feature on Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. Hyattsville, MD. 2016
- Source: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, October 2016, http://stats.oecd.org/index.aspx?queryid=54757
- Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Historical Income Tables Table P-40: Women’s Earnings as a Percentage of Men’s Earnings by Race and Hispanic Origin, 2016