Women, Retirement Planning Potent Combination for Advisors

Chances are as an advisor, you’re already allocating plenty of time to helping clients plan for retirement. There’s also a reasonable chance that advisors are engaging in retirement planning conversations and strategy sessions with married couples.

Nothing wrong that. After all, advisors have to play the client hand they are dealt, but that said, data confirm women – regardless of marital status – are a group that wants more advice and guidance when it comes to retirement planning.

Something astute advisors know that is that there are significant differences between retirement planning for married couples and single women – be they widowed or never married. No matter the scenario, women nearing or in retirement deserve and require bespoke service.

For advisors, the time to act is now. Whether it’s engaging with current female clients that are approaching retirement or holding events in the local community geared specifically to women – regardless of age – the current economic climate is conducive to helping women better prepare for retirement.

Finally, a Benefit from Inflation

Sure, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), inflation is easing, but it’s still high and one of the primary reasons female clients are looking for more retirement planning guidance. The recent Nationwide Retirement Institute® survey of employer-sponsored retirement plan participants and sponsors confirms as much.

“The study found that 62% of women are either expecting to retire later than originally planned or don’t believe they will ever be able to retire because of inflation, compared to 47% of men. This is a significant jump from 2021, when only one in four women expected to postpone or cancel their retirement due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” notes Nationwide’s Bethany Eippert.

Beyond paring contributions to employer-sponsored retirement plans, women are also are also delaying retirement and reducing funding to that effect in order to help loved ones deal with elevated personal expenses. Not surprisingly, that drags on their retirement outlooks and over financial well-being.

These setbacks are taking a toll on women’s futures and wellbeing. More than half (56%) of women feel worried when thinking about where they are at with their current retirement plan and financial investments, a 22-percentage point uptick from 2021. And 57% of those who are delaying or cancelling their retirement due to inflation say it has negatively impacted their mental health, versus 48% of men,” adds Eippert.

Translation: Advisors can leverage inflation for a positive, win-win scenario. That being helping women get their retirement planning efforts back on track.

More Positives for Advisors

Undoubtedly, high inflation and derailed retirement goals are viewed through a negative light. However, advisors can help women turn these lemons into lemonade. In fact, it actually makes more sense for advisors to focus related efforts on women over men. At least according to Nationwide.

However, more women than men are interested in solutions that can help them navigate challenges around inflation and better plan for retirement. Almost all (92%) female plan participants say they would be at least somewhat likely to rollover a portion or all of their current retirement plan savings into a guaranteed lifetime income investment option if they were able to, compared to 83% of men,” said Eippert.

Other potential conversation starters for advisors include transitioning women’s retirement savings into income and decumulation. Bottom line: Women are receptive to retirement advice. Advisors need to be ready on that front.

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