By Greg Lohr, MBA and Ethan Lohr, CFP®
Over the past three decades helping people as a financial advisor, we’ve noticed that many women lack confidence in managing their finances. It doesn’t have to be this way! Though this lack of confidence stems from many sources, there are steps women can take to help gain more confidence and better manage their money.
We must acknowledge that there’s a fundamental difference in how women and men approach money. It’s common for women to have too many goals at the same time, which makes it hard to prioritize. Many women also believe the money they currently have is all they will ever have (think of the amount of water in a lake). Men, however, view their money as always replenishing (think of a river constantly filling with more water). This feeling that money is scarce and must be held onto tightly can lead women to be more conservative in their investments—often holding their money in a savings account rather than in the stock market. Although perhaps the safest approach in terms of not losing money, this method means that many women risk their money by not growing enough to fund their retirement or other goals.
Women and Financial Challenges
The reality is that women face unique financial challenges:
- Women live longer than men—an average of about 81 years, compared to 76 for men. (1) Because many women outlive their husbands, they’re often alone in their later years. That can create problems for a widower who never handled any of the couple’s finances or a woman who outlives her retirement nest egg.
- Women earn less money than men. Though the pay gap is narrowing, it still exists. Currently, the average woman earns just 81 cents for every dollar a man earns. (2) That gap can lead to thousands less in earnings over a career, leaving women on average with less money to save and invest. I often see quite elderly women working in retail and fast food, which, sadly, they likely aren’t doing for social engagement.
- Women often serve as primary caregivers. Many women are the primary caregivers within their families, even in their later years, leaving them less time to focus on their finances. Many women also take time out of the workforce to care for children or older family members, cutting into their earnings.
Women and Financial Advisors
When couples seek out financial help, many financial advisors focus their attention on the male partner in review meetings, leaving women to feel excluded and less willing to ask questions and learn more about their investments. This leads to a cycle of uncertainty around women and finances.
Though greater financial literacy can help women be more confident with their finances, this education needs to go beyond stock picks and how to open a retirement account. Women need someone to listen to them and validate their feelings. A trusted financial advisor can help in this area.
Gain Financial Confidence
The first step to making positive decisions is gaining confidence in managing your finances. If this idea feels daunting (or even impossible), remember that you’re not alone. Lohr & Company is here to guide you. We can assess your current financial situation, help you make the necessary changes, or affirm that your investments are exactly where they should be. Financial confidence is possible, so don’t hesitate to schedule a complimentary introductory meeting online or reach out to us at 434-260-6742.
Greg Lohr founded Lohr & Company, a multi-generational financial advisory firm, in 1993 to help more people plan for a rewarding, well-deserved retirement. Before he entered the financial services industry, he worked as an electrical engineer. But after spending a few years as an engineer, he decided to follow his heart and return to school for an MBA in finance from the College of William & Mary. Although he originally entered the finance industry because he was excited about the personal opportunities, it was the satisfaction of seeing people at peace with their money that has kept him here for his entire career. He is passionate about building lifelong relationships with his clients and walking with them as they navigate financial decisions and milestones.
When he isn’t working, Greg enjoys spending time with his beautiful wife and their adult children. In addition to managing their family farms, Greg and his wife also manage a growing Airbnb venue. In the cold weather months, you can find Greg hunting whitetail deer in the breathtaking Virginia landscapes. To learn more about Greg, connect with him on LinkedIn.
Ethan Lohr always knew his dream was to follow in his father’s footsteps and carry out his same mission: to help more people find financial peace and security in retirement. Ethan started practicing for his future career quite early, at the age of 6, advising his sisters on their savings with the help of his trusty calculator. But it wasn’t until he graduated from James Madison University that he truly began developing his talent as a financial advisor at Lohr & Company. Ethan is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional.
Ethan is most fulfilled when he’s helping clients develop a sound plan and then executing that plan. He knows that pre-retirees often have many unanswered questions and may be feeling trepidation about retirement—and rightfully so. Retirement is one of life’s greatest transitions and Ethan knows how important it is to get everything right the first time. He works to ease his clients’ fears, provide them with confidence, and help them take the necessary actions to move forward.
When he isn’t serving clients, Ethan enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons. You can also find him practicing his swing on the golf course, exercising, and hunting with his dad. To learn more about Ethan, connect with him on LinkedIn.
Securities and advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Advisor. Fixed insurance products and services offered through Lohr & Company, LLC or CES Insurance Agency.