For quite some time, men have been considered to be the financial leaders and decision makers of their households — especially when it comes to investing and managing the family wealth.
For many women, it just seems almost natural, for their partners to assume this role, but why is this the case?
While the modern day woman has plenty on her plate between being a wife, raising a family, managing a career and taking care of a home (just to name a few), many still fail to see the importance of being equally involved in the finances.
So how can we break this cycle? Here are 6 reasons women should start taking financial initiative in their lives:
Married couples don’t necessarily enjoy hearing the cliche, “Nothing lasts forever,” because realistically, not all marriages end up in divorce (Besides, isn’t that a kill joy?). However, divorce, is still prevalent and is usually unpredictable (unless you see it coming for quite some time). The CDC reports that 3.6 out of 1,000 marriages in the US end up in divorce. Now, over the years the divorce rate has dropped, but who’s to say it will never happen to you? Unfortunately, it’s a possibility that should make you want to take control of your financial situation. There are just too many stories of women who are oblivious as to how their household finances and investments were managed by their former spouse.
Women are better multi-taskers than men
Let’s face it. Women are known to be efficient multi-taskers. Recent studies suggest women are more adept than men when it comes to switching quickly between different tasks. So, why is it that women can manage so many aspects of their lives, but so many delegate the finances and investments to their partners? Taking the initiative to be equally active with household finances, can actually help you make wiser financial decisions, all the while enabling a healthier relationship with your partner. Not to mention it’s another expertise you can add to your list.
To boost your career
According to Forbes, on average, a full-time, year round female worker earns 77 cents to every dollar her male peers earn. Now, financial literacy (or a lack thereof) doesn’t exactly correlate to lower wages, but doesn’t this make you question why that is? Could it be that women are not considered equally financially savvy as male counterparts? We need to start teaching our daughters and young women everywhere that just because you’re a female doesn’t mean you’re not just as good at math, science, or engineering, as men are.
For your health
Worry is a common feeling we all experience, but what happens when that worry consumes you? For many, worrying may often lead to health concerns such as, increased stress,
headaches, insomnia and illness. Your financial situation plays a large role in your health and relationships — especially when one partner carries the financial burden alone. Taking the initiative to be on the same page financially with your spouse or partner, can have a positive impact on your both your health and personal life.
To create security for you and your family
For some women, it can be easy to let go of financial responsibilities if their partner is already in control of the finances, but what would happen if that person were no longer around? Recent statistics by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), show that women are expected to outlive men by almost 5 years. Death, divorce and unfortunate situations, can leave many women in a financial panic. Learn to feel comfortable with your household finances and investments now, so you’re always prepared.
Bridge the financial literacy gap
A CNBC report suggests, women continue to feel less confident than men about their ability to manage their cash flow and debt, allocate their investments and prepare for their retirement. Financial health is just as important as any other main aspect of your life. It’s what determines your lifestyle and well-being. After all, it is your money, we’re talking about here. As women, we need bridge the gap and start feeling comfortable with our finances and investments. It’s the only way to ensure a brighter, financial future for yourself and future generations.
Don’t know where to start? Consider tools such as Mint, or LearnVest to organize your finances and help you see them at a glance. For a comparison on common investments, visit our investor resources page here.