Top tips to free your financial fears and increase your purse performance!

Business & Finance November 12 2015

moneyIf you are an Australian woman, you can expect to live five years longer than your male companions.[1] However, don’t celebrate just yet because, statistically speaking, you can’t afford those extra years or even to retire at all.

We hate to sound all doomsday, but it is time to face the facts – despite women living longer than ever, they are being crippled by financial inequality.

“In order to change these statistics, women need to take back control of their finance,” says Penny Collicoat, Founder of Women with Edge, a boutique financial planning firm for women.

Collicoat believes too many women are not taught about money management early in life, that financial decisions are seen as intimidating tasks reserved for men and that there is a false belief that financial planning is only for the exorbitantly wealthy or exceedingly poor.

“As women, we are guilty of putting ourselves behind everyone and everything else, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Education is the beginning of liberation and the first step towards financial empowerment is often as simple as seeking help from a financial planner,” says Collicoat.

We all realise the shocking pay gap currently stands at 17.4 per cent, but we may not translate that pay gap correlating into major implications for women’s superannuation savings. Penny Collicoat says the average female is expected to retire with about $112,600 in super savings compared to $198,000 for a male.[3]

Consequently, 90 per cent of women do not have enough superannuation to retire comfortably[4] and 65 per cent will rely on the government pension as their main source of income during retirement.[5]

While we love our families, women are often the primary caregivers of children and elderly or disabled family members, resulting in a less than beneficial reduction in our superannuation accounts across a working lifetime. Women’s super balances ‘flat-line’ between the ages of 38-42 and 43-47, with 40 per cent of women working part-time while caregiving contributing to this stall in earnings.

Females often accept these alarming statistics as part of womanhood – but at WY? we believe you shouldn’t settle for this!

According to Penny many women are constantly putting their financial future at the bottom of a never-ending To-Do list, and we can definitely relate to this problem. Issues such as debt or limited superannuation savings are neglected, as the more immediate day-to-day costs of school uniforms, bills or groceries are urgent now.

Inspired by Penny’s words and with another year coming hastily to an end, Team WY? is motivated to take Penny’s following tips to heart and have a serious look at how we could increase our purse performance! 

Penny Collicoat’s Top Three Tips for Taking Financial Control

1. Take an interest in your finances. Do some reading, even if it’s just once a week, Google is your friend! If you don’t know what you are doing, get some advice. If you have a broken arm you don’t put a cast on it yourself- you go to a doctor. Treat your finances the same way; find someone you like and work with them to create and achieve your financial goals.

2. Look at where and how your superannuation is invested- does it suit you and your life stage? How has it performed? An increase in return can mean the difference between retiring with enough money or living on government payments.

3. Put a budget in place! It doesn’t have to take a lot of time but it means you can at least see where you are spending your money, where you can cut back and start a savings plan- every little bit counts!