Ten financial tips for single women in order to live life on their terms
Women’s History Month has its origins as a national celebration in 1981 when Congress passed and authorized a resolution and requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as “Women’s History Week.” Throughout the next five years, Congress continued to pass joint resolutions designating a week in March as “Women’s History Week.”
In 1987 after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project, Congress passed a new resolution designating the month of March as “Women’s History Month.” Since that time, Congress and presidents have issued a series of annual resolutions and proclamations designating the month of March as “Women’s History Month.”
These proclamations celebrate the contributions women have made to the United States and recognize the specific achievements women have made over the course of American history in a variety of fields.
Attending to the Basics
If you’re divorced or separated, money management will become an important part of your life. While it may be true that money can’t buy or ensure happiness, your ability to manage your finances can play a large role in your financial future, and to a large extent, your ability to live life on your terms.
A huge amount of time is not necessarily required to get your finances moving in the right direction. It is often simply a matter of attending to the “basics.” The following steps may help you stay on track:
1. Pay Yourself First.
Transfer a set amount from your earnings to your savings each month. Even a small amount in the beginning helps.
2. Reduce Consumer Debt.
Avoid high credit card finance charges by paying off the balances each month, or if you must carry a balance, use only cards offering low finance rates beyond the introductory period.
3. Maintain Good Credit.
You can obtain one free annual credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian. Good credit is required for obtaining loans and low interest rates. Monitoring your credit can also help you guard against identity theft.
4. Diversify Your Savings.
Develop a plan for your short- and long-term needs. Consider your liquidity needs, risk tolerance, and time horizon for retirement. Be sure to consult a financial professional to help you determine an appropriate strategy for your financial future.
5. Take Advantage of Tax Benefits.
If you qualify, contribute to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), an employer-sponsored 401(k) plan, or another similar retirement plan. These plans offer tax benefits that may help enhance your retirement savings.
6. Update Your Estate Plan.
Have your will and any trusts reviewed by a legal professional. Prepare advance directives, such as a durable power of attorney, living will, and health care proxy. This is important for everyone at any time, regardless of age.
7. Review Your Insurance Needs.
Periodically review your risk management program. Your life, health, and disability income insurance needs will likely change as you progress through various life stages.
8. Plan for Future Care.
Consider your possible long-term care needs. Have you ever thought about your future care needs, should you one day require help with activities of daily living, such as meal preparation, personal care, dressing, and housekeeping? Long-term care insurance increases your care options, should the need arise by helping to cover care at home, an assisted living facility or in a nursing home.
9. Build a College Fund.
College tuition, at a public or private institution, continues to rise. So, relying on your children to receive scholarships or financial aid may not be the most practical strategy. Look into opening a 529 college savings plan or other college planning account. As soon as possible, begin saving for your child’s education. Eighteen years can pass quickly.
10. Set Long-Term Financial Goals.
Establish one-, three-, five- and 10-year goals. Evaluate your progress yearly and make adjustments, as appropriate, to work towards long-term financial confidence.
Whether you’re divorced or separated, straightening out your finances can become a top priority. Make a commitment now to start this planning process.
Attention to the basics may help you pursue your financial goals and improve your emotional and financial well-being.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any insurance product, ERISA or individual security. To determine which product(s) or investment(s) may be appropriate for you, consult your financial professional prior to investing.
Contributions to a traditional IRA may be tax deductible in the contribution year, with current income tax due at withdrawal. Withdrawals prior to age 59 ½ may result in a 10% IRS penalty tax in addition to current income tax.
Prior to investing in a 529 Plan investors should consider whether the investor's or designated beneficiary's home state offers any state tax or other state benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors that are only available for investments in such state's qualified tuition program. Withdrawals used for qualified expenses are federally tax free. Tax treatment at the state level may vary. Please consult with your tax advisor before investing.
This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax or legal advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific situation with a qualified tax or legal advisor.
LPL Financial Representatives offer access to Trust Services through The Private Trust Company N.A., an affiliate of LPL Financial.
All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however LPL Financial makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.
This article was prepared by FMeX.
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