According to recent studies, women have specific challenges as they plan for long-term financial security. Included in the list are these 3 important factors:
- Longevity. On average, women outlive men by five years. Women who reach age 65 can expect to live an average of 20 years longer than the average man. By age 75, 7 in 10 women are widowed, divorced or have never been married. 40 percent of them live alone, compared to 22 percent of men. Two-thirds of those past the age of 85 are women, as are 80 percent of centenarians.
- Care-giving. A higher percentage of women care for children and aging parents during their lifetime. As a result, they often miss opportunities to build careers, obtain education, and maintain qualifications in a challenging job market. Thus, they reach retirement with fewer assets from which to draw support and lower Social Security payments.
- Health Care and Long-Term Care Costs. On average, women who live to age 65 experience two years of disability requiring assistance before death. Those who reach age 80 will require three years of assistance. In nursing homes, 7 in 10 residents are women. They represent 76 percent of the residents in assisted living facilities and two-thirds of the recipients of home care.Planning for advanced age is vitally important to consider while options exist. One of our favorite resources is AARP’s “Planning for Long-Term Care Resource Guide” – an excellent tool and workbook to help analyze the big picture. You can access it here.
Do you have an aging parent whose future planning is concerning to you and for whom you feel responsible? Are you concerned about your own planning? If you’re working toward financial independence or caring for an aging loved one, we encourage you to start planning for longevity now. We’re here to help and have resources to share with you.