Over the past two decades, I have specialized in advising women in moments of transition. This has given me the unique opportunity to observe women’s financial practices and attitudes during the window in which they are most open and most vulnerable.
Oftentimes, this change happens as a result of divorce; however, women also face transitions in times of marriage, starting a new job, motherhood, widowhood, etc.
In fact, according to U.S. News & World Report, nearly two-thirds of women between ages 40 and 79 have experienced a major financial transition. When facing such change, women generally come across similar obstacles and misconceptions. In order to ensure smooth transitions and financial security, it’s important to be aware of common financial mistakes and risks to best avoid them.
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These are the top five financial pitfalls I have observed holding women back from a secure financial future:
1. Not using a budget: While creating and maintaining a budget is a commonly dreaded affair, the benefits of keeping track of your monthly expenses far outweigh the disadvantages.
Such benefits can entail saving for retirement, buying property, or having a college fund for your children. On the other hand, not using a budget can lead to overspending and credit card debt.
A study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, highlights that women are more likely to be overbudget by a greater amount than their male counterparts.
Uncontrolled debt not only batters your finances but may also generate enough stress to threaten your health. Health.com writes that debt can lead to problems such as high blood pressure, which can result in heart disease or stroke; an increase in anxiety; and depression.