Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter
In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.
¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.
²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.
³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.
4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.
Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.
Whether married or single, women face more unique obstacles when it comes to investing for retirement than men. In fact, on average, women spend fewer years in the workforce than men, as women often take time out to care for family members. Women also take home smaller paychecks and have a greater likelihood of working part-time or being a single parent. Marital status and occupation aside, women also have a longer life expectancy than men, putting them at greater risk of outliving their assets.
There are a few things every woman needs to keep in mind when planning for retirement:
Consider enrolling in your company’s retirement plan
Studies have shown that fewer women than men enroll in their employer’s retirement plan, and, when enrolled, women contribute less than men. However, it’s important to join an employer retirement plan as soon as you are eligible and to contribute as much as you can afford. Remember, the earlier you begin to save toward retirement, the more money you will have to compound over time.
Many employers will match a fixed percentage of an employee’s contribution up to a maximum percentage of salary (usually 6 percent). Take advantage of any matching contribution—it’s free money. If your employer offers a matching percentage, it makes financial sense to contribute no less than what is matched.
If you decide to leave your job, you’ll have options short of cashing out your current retirement plan. You can transfer one retirement plan to another—from an employer plan to a traditional IRA, for example—or you can simply leave the account with your original employer.
If you are not employed, you can transfer your retirement plan into a traditional IRA. This option will allow you to continue to manage your pre-tax funds in the market based on your investment tolerance. Another retirement account to consider, if you qualify, is a spousal IRA, which can give a non-working spouse access to the benefits of tax-favored retirement accounts.
Help yourself before helping others
Women trying to save for retirement are more likely than men to care for others in addition to themselves, whether it’s children or aging parents. As you build your retirement savings, remember that it needs to be a priority—no matter what else is on your plate.
One way to think about managing money for your retirement is to compare it to being a responsible passenger on an airline flight. In the event of a possible crash, you should put on your own oxygen mask before helping the passenger next to you. You can’t help other people unless you take care of yourself first.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Often, women are not confident about making financial decisions. A study by Prudential revealed that fewer than two in 10 women feel “very prepared” to make wise financial decisions, and half feel they need some help in making decisions. One-third feel they need “a lot” of help.
If you are a woman planning for retirement, it may be a good idea to meet with a financial planning professional. He or she can help you assess your current financial situation, set financial goals, and protect your assets. Even if you’re happily married, there’s no harm in having a solid understanding of your financial status as an individual.
Bahiyah Shabazz is the founder and CEO of both Shabazz Management Group and Fabulous & Money Savvy. She has appeared and given financial advice on various media outlets, and is the author of Women Building Wealth.
The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.