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Unique financial planning issues for women

Posted by Joe Allen-Black  September 19, 2012 03:46 PM

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Women face some unique financial issues today. Certified Financial Planner Rick Fingerman, founder and president of Financial Planning Solutions Inc. in Newton, offers these five issues that can affect a successful financial life for women today. Fingerman will be live chatting about financial issues unique to women on Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 11 a.m.

1. Have a plan - If you fail to plan, you plan to fail
Take some time to learn how to plan for your life goals. Check websites, the library or sit down with a Certified Financial Planner and develop a financial plan. This is the first step. Like in any journey, you must know where you are starting from. A financial plan will not only tell you where you stand today but also if you will be able to get where you want to go. You might find out that you are on a good path to a comfortable retirement and meeting your other goals. If not, then you can learn some strategies to make the journey possible.

2. Funding a retirement plan
Many women step out of the workplace to raise a family. Not only does this reduce one's household income, but it also reduces how much money one is putting away in a company sponsored retirement plan. Consider contributing to a Roth or Traditional IRA if you are married. One is permitted to make contributions as a spouse even if one doesn't have any earned income. As long as the working spouse has income to satisfy the contribution requirements, this can be a great way to keep investing while out of the workforce.

3. Prepare to live for a long time
Statistically speaking, women out live men by 5 to 10 years. In fact, those that make it to 100, 85 percent are women. Living longer means needing money in retirement longer. Factor this in when doing your financial plan.

4. Caring for an aging parent
More times then not, women are the likely candidate to be the main caregiver. If possible, plan ahead when your parents are young enough to help ensure long term care can be provided to reduce this burden on oneself. Many times a woman is still raising her own children when this caregiver role is thrust upon them. This can be extremely stressful. Try to spread the cost, if possible. Ideally, when there is time to plan, long term care insurance can make a lot of sense as it provides care in the home as well as a long term care facility or assisted living.

5. Don't forget to take care of yourself!
Since you may very well outlive your spouse or partner, include a long-term care strategy in your own financial plan so there will be someone to help you if needed later in life. The best thing someone can do to prepare for this is to start as early as possible and have a good financial plan. If one is more in crisis mode with no time to plan, it's best to seek out an elder attorney or CFP that works in this area

Rick Fingerman is a Certified Financial Planner Professional, who has been helping individuals and business owners with strategic solutions to their estate, business and personal financial planning needs since 1989.

Rick is a member of the Financial Planning Association of MA (FPA), where he is a past president and chairman and holds the current position of liaison and financial coach with Dana Farber Cancer Institute. This initiative was developed to help patients with pro bono financial advice. Nearly 300 families have been helped to date.

Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. a Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC Investment Advisor Representative, Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Federally Registered Investment Advisor. Cambridge and Financial Planning Solutions, Inc. are not affilated.

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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Local finance professionals share insights and advice on issues such as budgeting, managing debt, and retirement planning.

About the contributors

D. Abraham Ringer is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER practitioner and a Financial Adviser with Morgan Stanley Global Wealth Management in Boston. He is registered in MA, NH, NY and several other states to which his articles are directed. For more information please visit
Financial Planning Association™ of Massachusetts has 900 members who specialize in the financial planning process. Many of its members engage in philanthropic pro bono work in their communities, recommend legislation, elevate public awareness, promote financial literacy, and advocate for sound economic and tax policies.
Odysseas Papadimitriou is the founder of, a credit card and gift card marketplace, and, a personal finance site. He has more than 13 years of experience in the personal finance industry, and previously served as senior director at Capital One.

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