More than half of Australian women feel in control of their finances, but saving money and earning enough remain touchy subjects.
According to a new MLC survey, 43 per cent of women questioned said they do not feel in control of their money, compared to 57 per cent of women who do.
Relationship status or potentially age seem to affect things with only 47 per cent of single women saying they feel in control of their money
This is in addition to the 32 per cent of respondents who said they have less than a month’s worth of savings to live off if they needed to.
Having a low amount of cash savings and not earning enough were the biggest issues that women cited for affecting their money confidence.
Indeed, women seem to be confident about retirement with 81 per cent of women believing they will own their own home in retirement and 77 per cent think they’ll have less than 50,000 left on their mortgage when they retire
But women aren’t overly active with topping up their super savings with 66 per cent saying they are not participating in voluntary super contributions
Among those women who do not feel confident about saving for retirement, 74 per cent said they believe that high cost of living in Australia is the reason; 48 per cent nominated low super balances as a factor.
This is something that businesswoman and mother of two, Gail Symons, says resonates profoundly with her.
The self-employed Sydney mother of two went through a divorce a few years ago. It was at this time Gail realised that her time out of the workforce to raise her children, her lack of additional super contributions, and being in a low-risk category in her super fund had significantly impacted her wealth.
“I am an educated, successful woman, and I thought I was doing everything right, but nobody told me about the consequences of not putting myself and my money first, and the impact my life decisions
In a bid to provide Australian women with additional financial support, MLC Advice will offer complimentary general advice sessions to 500 women across Australia who are interested in speaking about their finances with an MLC adviser until the end of January.
Women who are interested in this opportunity can register here.
Top tips for women from Deborah Di Trapani, MLC Advice
1. Don’t delay uncomfortable conversations: Divorce, illness, job loss and death all impact women’s wealth, so speak with your partner, family or a financial adviser to ensure you can plan for adverse events and make sound decisions if they occur.
2. Get to know your super: How much do you have? How much will you need? How can you benefit from voluntary contributions? All this will have a huge impact when you retire.
3. Be independent and become an expert on your money: Know your money inside out and – debt, savings, investments, and super – and how all of it works for you.
4. Prioritise your financial goals as well as your life and career goals: The decisions you make in work and your personal life will all impact your finances.
5. Your salary matters: Your paycheque and super are vital to your financial security. Don’t undersell yourself, negotiate your pay, and be aware of your worth at work.