Shorter work life; longer plan

Two important aspects which make retirement planning for women different, higher life expectancy and shorter working
Sunil Mishra        Print Edition: October 2014
Tips for women to ensure better retirement planning
Photo: Reuters

Saying that retirement planning is important will be merely stating the obvious. A safe and financially secure retirement is the dream of all, but reality for a few. Women, whether married or unmarried, are often caught at the wrong financial end when it comes to retirement planning. This can be because despite the fact that more women through the years have started working, they are not focused on saving for their own needs. However, one needs to concentrate on better retirement planning for secured life in old age, irrespective of whether they are married or single. There are two important aspects which make retirement planning for women different:

HIGHER LIFE EXPECTANCY

It has been proven that women have higher life expectancy than men. This means that while planning for retirement, women will have to plan for a longer period. In case a woman is fully dependent on her husband and is not financially aware, she can get into trouble after the husband passes away. So, whether a woman is planning her retirement alone, or with her husband, the number of years post retirement is an important aspect of retirement planning. Also, the husband must ensure that if his wife outlives him, she should not only have sufficient funds to carry her through her old age but also have complete knowledge about it.

LESS WORKING YEARS

It is common to see women give up their careers or take up lesser-paying jobs to take care of the children, maintain work life balance etc. This percentage of women doing this is high in India when compared to western countries. This means women will have to save more in a short period to fulfill their needs. So, they should start planning for retirement and stick to a plan right from the beginning of their careers. That is the time when there are limited responsibilities and so can save sizeable amounts. Equity is a good option at this stage of life. If one has to quit the jobs due to family reasons, make sure that whatever you have accumulated is invested well. Also, do not spend all your provident fund even if you withdraw it, and invest it wisely.

RETIREMENT TIPS FOR SINGLE WOMEN:

>> Start early and contribute as much to your PF as you can afford.

>> Start investing in equity investment plans. Invest in compounding plans so that you get better returns.

>> Always maintain contingency cash so that you need not to depend on policies or investments at emergencies.

RETIREMENT TIPS FOR MARRIED WOMEN:

>> Discuss with your husband regarding your earnings and how much you have decided to allocate for your retirement plans.

>> Find suitable retirement plans in financial market and with complete expert guide you can have better retirement schemes, which gives you better tax-efficient yield.

>> Do not invest your retirement corpus on speculative assets.

>> Involve your husband in decision-making so that your portfolios are in sync.

Plan early to ensure you have a peaceful and financially secure retired life.

 

(The author, Sunil Mishra, is CEO of Karvy Private Wealth)

 

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