Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation for Prudential.
I consider myself a smart woman. A woman who is business savvy. A woman who helps run a household and runs her own blog. Yet, I avoid talking about finances. To be honest, I’m slightly intimidated regarding certain financial topics.
I’ve come to realize that when it comes to talking about finances and money matters with my female friends, it’s well… not talked about. Financial topics are taboo. I talk about a lot of things with my friends but never really thought about the fact that financial issues were just avoided.
Prudential has been researching the financial challenges women face for several years, and they have given me a lot to think about. Like these four financial challenges we women face: (1) Women are living longer and alone, (2) Time gap, (3) Wage and income gap, and (4) Investment gap.
Women Live Longer Than Men
For instance, did you know that women outlive men by an average of 5 – 6 years 1? Talk about an eye-opener. If I live longer than my husband, will I be able to continue to live the same financial lifestyle I’ve grown accustomed to?
As a woman, I need to be more concerned with my financial planning.
But my real “aha” moment came when I became a later in life first-time mom. Around the time I would be starting to think about investing in retirement, we became pregnant. Here I was almost thirty-nine with a newborn. How could I think about retirement when I had a child that would, in approximately 8 years, be attending college. Now more than ever, I need to take control of my financial planning.
It was important to me to be home with my son during the first few years of my his life, so I didn’t work, making no financial contribution, nor financial investments for 5 years while being a full-time mother and homemaker.
Even though my husband has always been wonderful about contributing to household chores, I still devote more hours cleaning and cooking than he does. According to research, on average, women in the U.S. spend 28 hours per week on household chores – 65 percent more than the average for men.2
All those hours of household chores are uncompensated and don’t figure into women’s financial planning.
I love the tool called the “Value of all you do,” created by Prudential, that lets you very quickly quantify the value of all the household chores you do on a daily basis. What you would need to pay someone to do those for you. Let’s just say, I would have a LOT of money if I were getting paid for all I do in our household.
Wage and Income Gap
As a woman, I spent many years in the workforce making less than my male counterparts. Although it has improved, over the years, I still find it shocking that the average woman working full-time earns 79% of the income earned by her male counterpart.3 There are several reasons for this, like not negotiating salaries and the differences in pay between men and women.
Women don’t invest to the same degree as their male counterparts. 4 Unfortunately, this discomfort with investing comes at a high cost for us. Women tend to be less risk takers which make us more likely to run out of money in retirement.
Thanks to Prudential I’m ready to own my own future. I’m ready to take control of my financial planning, invest in my son’s future, and I’m more than willing to talk openly and freely about financial topics with my female friends. Because we need to support each other and learn from each other.
Are you ready to own your future? Prudential wants to empower women with financial solutions so we can be confident in making the right decisions for ourselves and our families. Click here to learn more from Prudential about ways you can take control of your financial planning.
What “aha” moment made you want to take control of your financial future?
1.Prudential Retirement analysis; National Center for Health Statistics, Health, United States, 2015: With Special Feature on Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. Hyattsville, MD. 2016
2.Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, October 2016, http://stats.oecd.org/index.aspx?queryid=54757
3.U.S. Census Bureau, Historical Income Tables Table P-40: Women’s Earnings as a Percentage of Men’s Earnings by Race and Hispanic Origin, 2016