Longevity makes it imperative we make a conscious effort to save more money while we are still working. Life expectancy has continued to increase with females now aged 65 expected to live to 87.1 and a 65-year-old male can expect to live to 84.2 according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. I became a widow at 55, my girlfriend became a widow at 59 and my Mum became a widow at 83. The chances of women ending up on their own are greater than men and that is why women need to avoid running out of money.
There has been much written as to why women live longer than men on average. Men are more likely to take more risks than women. Men drive more aggressively than women and are exposed to hazards in the workplace. Men have higher rates of alcoholism and smoking. Women, on the other hand, tend to be more health conscious and see the doctor. Men often delay seeking treatment and do not always follow the suggested treatment.
Men as the traditional breadwinners and family investment managers don't work anymore as women are more often left on their own either through being divorced or being widowed. My Mum is 88 years old and is still going strong. There is a reasonable chance that I will live until I am 90 or beyond. Women are now being encouraged to take an active interest to learn about investing and know where all the retirement savings are located. Women, given the right tools, can make better investment decision than men, and they need to.
Kate Stalter, from Better Money Decisions, quotes Dave Ramsay, the popular US podcast host when he said that we earn the most in our 50’s and our 60’s. This is the prime time to stash away as much as we possibly can during these years for our retirement. We need to be aware that if we run out of money in our 90’s it is highly unlikely that we can go back to work. What would your backup plan be then? Do you really want to be reliant on your children or grandchildren for handouts?
Kate Stalter talks to me, Ann Nelson, about being a savvy investor and why she feels Retirement is a women’s issue. Have a listen and tell me what you think about episode 50 and learn why women need to avoid running out of money.
Until next time.