Women may need financial ‘catch-up’
Here’s something that might surprise you: Women face more than a $1 million lifetime earnings gap, according to a study from Edward Jones and Age Wave. As a woman, how can you help yourself?
Start by paying yourself first. Each month have some money moved automatically from your checking account into an emergency fund, which can be used for any reason, such as the need to step away from your job to care for children or aging parents.
Also, contribute as much as you can afford to your IRA and your 401(k).
And consider Social Security. The longer you can afford to wait before collecting benefits, the larger your monthly checks. Your spouse’s claiming decision can also affect the benefit you receive, so make sure you and your spouse understand your options.
Finally, get some assistance. A financial professional can evaluate your situation, make investment recommendations and help you plan for your future.
Hopefully, women won’t always have to play financial “catch up.” For now, though, use all the means at your disposal to help yourself.