Money is not gender equal. The facts remain that women earn less than men and carry the greatest load in raising children whilst balancing work and family.
On average, women live seven years longer than men, so we need to save more for retirement. If a man is saving 15% of his income towards retirement, a woman would have to save 18% to have the same sustainable retirement income.
We also need to look after our health. Statistically women under the age of 55 are more likely to suffer from a severe illness or disability than death. Cancer is a woman’s biggest health risk ‒ especially breast cancer. So it is important to have regular screening tests and consider taking critical illness cover.
Have your own money plan with your own bank account and credit record. And even if you have taken time out to raise your children, you need your own retirement plan. Don’t just rely on your husband’s – it won’t be enough.
Know your value and get what you’re worth. One of the reasons women earn less than men is that they tend to underestimate their competence. Understand the value you add and the skills you bring.
Plan for motherhood. If you decide to be a stay-at-home mom for a while, try to maintain your investment contributions or at the very least do not cash in the investments or retirement funds you already have. They are your financial independence.
Learn about managing your own money. Research shows that women are actually better money managers – so don’t just leave it to the men.
- Further reading on this topic.