As International Women's Day approaches, it's a good time for women to assess their financial planning strategies and make adjustments to seek to ensure that they are on the right track to pursue their long-term goals. Here are some key financial planning strategies that women should consider.
1. Plan for long-term care
As women tend to live longer than men, they may be more likely to require long-term care at some point in their lives. To prepare for this, it's important to consider long-term care insurance or other ways to fund long-term care costs, such as a health savings account (HSA) or a retirement account.
2. Consider a 529 plan*
If you have children or are planning to have children, a 529 plan can be a valuable tool to save for their education. A 529 plan is a tax-advantaged savings plan that allows you to invest in a variety of options to grow your savings over time. Withdrawals from a 529 plan are tax-free when used for qualified educational expenses, such as tuition, fees, and books.
3. Maximize your retirement contributions
Maximizing your contributions to a retirement plan, such as a 401(k) or IRA, can help you work toward financial security in retirement. It's important to start saving for retirement as early as possible and to contribute the maximum amount each year. If you have access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan, take advantage of any employer matching contributions to maximize your savings.
4. Consider an annuity*
An annuity is a financial product that can provide a guaranteed stream of income for a set period or for the rest of your life. This can be particularly beneficial for women, who may have longer life expectancies and need to ensure a reliable income stream during retirement. An annuity can also provide protection against market downturns and inflation, making it a valuable tool for long-term financial planning.
5. Work with a financial advisor
Working with a financial advisor can help you develop a customized financial plan that takes into account your unique financial situation and goals. A financial advisor can help you identify areas where you can save money, provide investment advice, and help you navigate complex financial decisions. They can also help you stay on track and adjust your plan as your financial situation changes over time.
By following these financial planning strategies, women can work toward greater financial security and independence, both today and in the years to come. Whether you're just starting to plan for your financial future or looking to make adjustments to your existing plan, working with a financial advisor can help you pursue your long-term financial goals.
*Prior to investing in a 529 Plan investors should consider whether the investor's or designated beneficiary's home state offers any state tax or other state benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors that are only available for investments in such state's qualified tuition program. Withdrawals used for qualified expenses are federally tax free. Tax treatment at the state level may vary. Please consult with your tax advisor before investing.
*Fixed and Variable annuities are suitable for long-term investing, such as retirement investing. Gains from tax-deferred investments are taxable as ordinary income upon withdrawal. Guarantees are based on the claims paying ability of the issuing company. Withdrawals made prior to age 59 ½ are subject to a 10% IRS penalty tax and surrender charges may apply. Variable annuities are subject to market risk and may lose value.