It is so important for women to financially educate themselves, as statistically women will find themselves alone at some stage and one of the biggest regrets that women with a partner have is letting their partner control all the finances.
Many older women find themselves suddenly single after separation or bereavement and women over the age of 50 are significantly more likely than men to live alone.
Buying property and funding retirement alone can be a daunting prospect for a single person. For women in particular it doesn’t help that, on average, they earn less than men, and live more than four years longer than men, meaning longer retirements to fund. Women are more likely to take time out of the workforce to raise children and often again later in their lives to look after elderly parents.
Divorce can hit women harder than men. I learnt from an early age not to expect someone else to take care of me financially.
Regardless of whether you end up in a relationship or not, gaining control of your finances will give you the best chance of having a financially secure future.
I teach budgeting 101 to all my new clients, as having a good understanding of your cash flow allows you to make informed financial decisions.
Here are some thought-provoking statistics:
- Three out of five working women earn less than $30,000 per year.
- At age 65, women have an average life expectancy of 20 years, compared to 17 for men.
- Nearly half of all women over 45 are unmarried.
- From age 65 on, women are more than twice as likely as men to be widowed, divorced, separated or never married.
- At age 65 and older, 40% of women live alone, compared to 19% of men.
- Women are now earning the equivalent to what men were earning 10 years ago.
- Social Security represents 53% of total income for unmarried women over 65.
- 39.5% of women are kept out of poverty by receiving social security; 12.5% are poor despite receiving social security.