Things women can do to boost their retirement security
The Time to Start is Probably Now
If you're a woman, odds are high that your pension will be lower than that for the men you car pool with to work. So, whether you're just starting up the career ladder or a well-established veteran, you need to do more than just think about boosting your retirement security. Fortunately, there is a lot you can do.
- Make a conscious effort to take charge of your own retirement planning. Don't leave it to chance... or your husband. Start saving for retirement. No excuses.
- Get knowledgeable about finances. You don't need to become a Wall Street wizard. You can learn enough to make intelligent choices - or at least understand the advice of experts - by reading a few books or attending a weekend seminar. Investing a few hours learning the basics can pay big dividends in knowledge today, and financial security tomorrow.
- Make maximum contributions to qualified retirement plans through work and IRAs on your own.
- If you're single, don't wait for Mr. Right to come along and solve all your problems. Too many women torpedo their own financial security by deferring to their husbands - even the one they haven't met yet. Besides, even if he is Mr. Right, you will probably outlive him. Your best bet: Take charge of your own future.
- If you're married, take an active part in your household's finances. Become economic partners with your husband.
- If you're married, discuss the critical differences between joint and single life pension and annuity benefits. Under a single life option, when he dies, his benefits die with him. Also, since you probably will outlive him, make sure that your (his and your) estate plan provides for you after he is gone.
- Look before you leap when changing jobs. Don't go solely for a bigger paycheck; make sure you won't lose retirement benefits. Also, you may want to think twice before retiring early - before your benefits are maxed out.
- Become financially aggressive. Historically, women have tended to be conservative with money. While this is changing, many women still tend to focus too much on protecting principal than on achieving solid returns.
Consider All Your Financial Choices
It's important to carefully evaluate all your financial options. There are a variety of products available that can suit any number of goals. By exploring your choices today, you can establish a sound financial strategy for your retirement years. It's important to factor in all your present and future needs, both financial and personal. This way you may help ensure that your "golden years" will be more carefree.
If you would like to discuss your retirement income needs with a local New York Life agent, click on the 'Talk to Us' button and we’ll help find one near you.