Today Indian metros are seeing an increasing number of women opting to stay single. In their priorities and approach, they often differ from couples. Here are some points to consider while planning for single women:
Unlike married women, singles are usually more independent and practical in their decisions, says Deepali Sen of Srujan Financial Advisors. “The biggest advantage of working with single women is that they know what they need. They are extremely independent in their decision-making. While married women can commit only after discussing with their family, single women take decisions on her own,” she says
Single women’s commitment to their investments varies with age. While women below 30 years are more carefree and prefer spending on comforts rather than investments, those over 30 are more serious for investments.
Yogita Dand of Asky Financial Services says that advisors must hand hold such clients in the initial years and ensure that they do not eat into their savings. “Single women need handholding in the initial years. Over time, they get serious about their finances,” she says.
Just as men have affinity for cars, women prefer investing in properties. “Once they have invested in a property, they usually start saving up for other goals,” says Yogita.
Nisreen Mamaji of Money Works feels that advisors must encourage such clients to pursue this goal. “I advise women to invest in a house even if they are going to inherit some property. This ensures their financial independence, even post retirement,” says Nisreen.
Vacations are a big part of a single woman’s life. Since they do not have many commitments, bachelorettes usually prefer taking long vacation. “Vacation planning is a big part of their financial plan. Singles prefer taking a vacation at least once a year. Apart from providing for yearly vacations, advisors must also plan for vacations they might take post retirement. In most cases this is an international holiday,” says Deepali.
Unlike couples, single women require to save more for post retirement contingencies such as emergency fund, medical expenses apart from the retirement fund.
“I suggest my clients to put aside at least 50% of their funds towards retirement. This way, even if they have to quit their job early, they are not hard pressed for money,” says Nisreen.
Apart from these key areas, single women, at times, need to provide for their dependent parents or siblings.
The main difference in planning for a single woman as opposed to a couple is their acceptance of their situation. “I find that it is easier to plan for singles as they are more realistic. They understand their challenges. They are also very practical in their goal setting,” says Deepali.