Overcoming retirement challenges for women

Overcoming retirement challenges for women

Over the past decades, women’s roles in both the workplace and at home have evolved. Today, women are employed in what were at one time considered primarily male professions, are in more leadership roles and often acting as CEO of the family finances.

But when it comes to saving for retirement, women face unique challenges.

Not only do they live longer than men, women are more likely to have taken time off for caregiving or work part-time, which translates into lower pay during these years, and may not qualify for company-sponsored retirement plans and employer match.

What can women do to overcome these challenges?

Actively think about and plan for your retirement

There are many websites and financial tools that help calculate how much you’ll need to save and your future income sources.

Once you have a better picture of what it will take to retire, you can evaluate your situation and the impact it will have on your ability to save.

It’s also important to understand how to invest your retirement nest egg. You don’t have to become an investment expert. If you have an employer sponsored plan, ask about tools that may be available to help you select your investment options and determine the allocation approach that is best for you. Consider your age, your risk tolerance and the level of interest you have in selecting and monitoring your investments.

Spousal IRA

If you are married and providing care for a family member, you may be eligible for a spousal IRA. Contributions can come from income earned by you or your spouse.

Employer retirement plans

If you are back in the workforce and have access to an employer retirement plan, take advantage of it. Enroll when you are first eligible and contribute as much as you can.

Understand how increasing your contribution just 1 percent can pay off in the long run, and make it a goal to defer more each year.

Catch-up contributions

When you are over age 50, you can make up for time off by utilizing catch-up contributions. In 2020, you can contribute and extra $1,000 to your IRA and an extra $6,500 to 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans.

Social Security benefits

If you are nearing the eligibility age for Social Security benefits, you will want to understand the filing options available to spouses. Depending on your situation, there are approaches that can make a big difference in your total household lifetime benefits, and the amount that is paid to a surviving spouse.

Next steps

Retirement planning seems challenging, but the good news is that there are many resources available to help you. A financial adviser can also help with your planning. Once you start actively preparing, it’s often the small but continual steps that make a big difference over the long term.



The information provided here is for informative purposes only and is not intended to provide legal or tax advice. Should such advice be sought, a competent professional should be consulted.

Insurance products issued by The Ohio National Life Insurance Company and Ohio National Life Assurance Corporation. Guarantees are based upon the claims-paying ability of the issuer. Product, product features and rider availability vary by state. Issuers not licensed to conduct business in NY.