Who handles the money in your relationship? For those standing on the sidelines now, there is a chance you’ll be in charge of your finances in the future. And it’s a bigger undertaking than you may realize.
See how Steve responds to finance expert Marcia Mantell’s claim that nine out of 10 women are unprepared to manage their own money in this week’s Two-Minute Retirement Solution.
A long time ago – 25 years to be exact – when I was a baby broker building a business, my manager told me to find women as clients: divorced, widowed and retired. He said they had 90% of the cash in the world and needed help.
Ninety percent in cash means it loses value every year to taxes and inflation. Yes, even with the ridiculously low inflation we have now, it still takes a bite.
And since I was working with the retired portion of the market, nine out of 10 of my clients turned out to be older women on their own who had no idea how to manage their money, almost all of which was in cash.
So how much have the times changed in the last 25 years? One expert says not at all.
Marcia Mantell, author of What’s the Deal With Retirement Planning for Women? says that nine out of 10 women will be responsible for managing their own money at some point in their lives and most are totally unprepared.
But all the focus in the money management business is on 60-year-old males. That’s the average client for money management businesses.
Women are an afterthought. This has always been and is still a real problem.
Something has to give. Living longer and having to pay your bills on what you earn on cash is not a workable plan. It is a guaranteed way to wake up broke in your 80s.
And Mantell, who now runs a money management firm exclusively for women, says it isn’t all on the brokers and advisors.
According to Mantell, women are comfortable with all the “M” words – marriage, motherhood, merlots and martinis – but freeze up and back away at the word “money.”
And she knows all too well that it has to change!
If you are in one of those relationships where one person is making all the money decisions, believe me, you are not doing the other one any favors.
And, if you’re anything like my ex-wife, who always put her hands up and said, “That’s your responsibility, I don’t want to be in it,” it’s time to get real.
Whoever survives the other member in a relationship, if you’re taking over managing the money when you’ve never been a part of the process, it is a huge undertaking.
It is also one of the primary reasons elderly women are the victims of financial fraud so often.
You’re making it too easy for the crooks, and believe me, this money thing is not brain surgery.
In fact, in my experience, most women are more intuitive investors. They know where to draw the risk line a lot better than most men. And that is how you make money: managing the risk.
So for anyone who is out there on the sidelines, get out there and get involved in your money. Make your advisor spend the time to help you catch up. If he won’t help, get another advisor.
But you have to put the work into it, too.
That’s it for this week.