Three main barriers preventing women from preparing for retirement
Retirement for women can be challenging. We describe how to overcome common hurdles women face.
Women face unique barriers when it comes to preparing for retirement. From Social Security and social equality to dealing with "mommy taxes" and gender equality, retirement for women comes with a different set of challenges than it does for men. Women often earn less over their careers, which means they need to save more since they tend to live longer.
Here are the three main barriers that often prevent women from being adequately prepared for retirement:
1. Retirement is often a lower priority for women
Women tend to place a lower priority on saving for retirement as they focus primarily on meeting daily living costs and paying off debt. This can sometimes prevent them from even getting started. Additionally, women are more likely than men to leave the workforce to care for children or aging parents. This can mean losing the opportunity to contribute to an employer-sponsored retirement plan, which could lead to a significant savings gap. This highlights how important it is to start saving for retirement as early as possible. However, during those gap years, if you're married and filing jointly, you may still be able to contribute to an individual retirement account (IRA) on the basis of your spouse's earnings through a spousal IRA.
2. Women don't always feel adequately equipped to manage their finances
While women regularly manage day-to-day expenses, they don't always feel adequately equipped when it comes to saving for retirement and often rely on the expertise of others for decision-making. This can prevent women from taking an active role in preparing for retirement and can put them at risk of not saving enough.
3. Women are often hesitant to ask for help with retirement planning
Asking for help with retirement planning can be intimidating, but a willingness to learn from others and search for answers can pay off in the long run. Seeking advice from a trusted professional or a friend can help you gain the knowledge you need to take control of your retirement planning.
Now is a great time to start planning for retirement
It's never too early to start taking an active role in your long-term financial planning. Don't be afraid to ask questions and seek advice – a few simple steps can help you overcome these barriers and take control of your financial future.