In recent weeks, I’ve been researching more about women, retirement and the options women have.

Here’s what I found:

-Women lack confidence in their retirement planning
-Time off for care-giving negatively impacts retirement
-Women are less likely to be offered retirement benefits

The list goes on.

Keeping up on retirement savings is a big issue for many Baby Boomers today, and women in particular face some unique challenges to overcome. The economic tides have already turned, and pre-retirees need to make financial decisions and think outside the box to make up the difference in retirement income.

That said, I did come across one study on women and retirement in America that showed how women are evolving their retirement planning strategy to improve their outlook.

Here are a Few Promising Facts I Discovered:

Fact: Most women plan to continue working in retirement.

According to the study by TransAmerica, half of women plan to work after they retire, 38% part-time and 11% full-time. Planning to work past age 65 is a realistic first step to bridge the gap in retirement savings. Retiring “on time” is becoming less and less realistic for Boomer women today, especially since it’s possible to live 95+ years.

Fact: Many women plan to self-fund their retirement.

According to CNBC, only two-thirds baby boomers have saved money for retirement. For those who have saved money, the median savings is only $200,000.

59 percent of women plan to self-fund their retirement. Most (43%) planned to rely on their 401(k)/403(b) accounts or IRAs, while 16% planned to rely on other savings and investments.

Only 27% planned to rely on Social Security benefits. This is another good sign that women have a good grasp of the realities of retirement in America. Social security already isn’t enough to maintain any standard of lifestyle in America, thanks to inflation. It’s also projected to run dry in the next 17 years.

Fact: Most women are saving outside of work.

One of the most heartening statistics I saw is that 55 percent of women are saving for retirement outside of work. This is an important reality for women and retirement in America for two reasons:

Your Salary Probably Isn’t Enough

Baby Boomers only have so many years left to earn before retirement hits. And thanks to the 2008 financial crisis, women (and men) have a lot of work to do growing their nest egg to where it needs to be. Earning extra income outside your job through investments or a side business is a key solution to this problem.

Job Security Issues

Corporate job security isn’t what it used to be (According to the World Economic Forum, the average lifespan of a multinational, Fortune 500-size corporation is 40 to 50 years). And it’s possible your job could be replaced by robots or AI, all before you retire. It happens all the time, so you need an alternative plan to support yourself. This is a particularly big problem for women who struggle to regain employment after leaving the job market for some time.Are you one of them?

Women facing retirement in America have many challenges ahead of them, but are also developing new strategies and making personal finance decisions to cope with these economic changes.

But not all have faced the realities of retirement today. In order to build a safety net and really prepare for the kind of retirement they want to have, women need to:

-Retirement plans: Invest heavily in retirement accounts (It’s never too late to start)
-Identify other investment or business opportunities outside of their salaried job
-Plan to downsize before retirement, not after
-Consider relocating somewhere affordable during retirement
-Consider the rate of health care prices and pursue options outside the United States.
-Explore the many ways to earn money online

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4 Comments. Leave new

  • I’m glad you see some hope for women. It’s really tough when the job market is hardly open to older women AND we outlive men. It makes planning super important. Thanks for the eye-opening post.

  • Ageism is doubly hard for women. Career interruptions to raise a family are also borne by women (like for us). I really do think there is hope if you break through the traditional mindset and embrace all of the new opportunities available today.

  • Vanessa A Kollock
    September 16, 2019 4:13 PM

    I am responding for RESEARCH purposes only. I believe I am in good shape. I retired at 58 (20 months ago) with an employer pension, which includes full medical/dental for life. Over $350K in 401K (untouched to date). No debt except mortgage. And can’t even collect SS for 2 1/2 years. My ONLY concern is paying income taxes when I draw on my tax-deferred $. My research shows I’ll be paying about .40cents on the $1. as I live in NYC. I’m thinking I can use my SS to pay income taxes as I am well over the current $17,860. threshold and intend to collect early (62 1/2). Also want to set up a foundation/trust for my grandchildren. If your advice addresses the above, I may be interested. If not, please don’t bombard me with emails or phone calls. Thank you, and have a wonderful day.

    • Your numbers look great! But I am not an accountant, so I’d check your numbers with one and whoever does your taxes. Both your pension and he lifetime medical coverage are GOLDEN, too. Your grandchildren are lucky and I certainly hope they follow you’re disciplined example.

      One thought– and I know this is a tough one– but NYC is horribly expensive and not tax-friendly. I relocated from NYC to Florida before moving abroad and have saved tens of thousands of dollars in income taxes. I had to say it!

      Well done Vanessa and thanks for pinging me.


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