Agency Celebrates Women’s History Month with a Focus on Financial Legacy
Facts Every Woman Should Know About Money
Riverside, CA– March 1, 2011 – Springboard Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management is pleased to celebrate Women’s History Month by bringing attention to women’s unique financial needs and equipping them with tools to better understand and manage their financial future. The stories of women’s achievements are integral to the fabric of our history with Women’s History Month designated every March as an opportunity to honor and celebrate women’s remarkable historic achievements. “It is also an excellent time for women to examine their financial goals and to have a robust dialogue concerning their financial plans,” said Melinda Opperman, Springboard’s senior vice president of community outreach and industry relations. “Our financial legacy is often determined by the decisions we make today,” said Opperman.
Springboard encourages women all year long to take control of their financial future by becoming educated on important money matters such as credit and debt management, identity theft awareness and prevention and predatory lending. “As women outlive men in almost every society, it is important that women establish a habit of making informed financial decisions,” said Opperman. “Women are often faced with having to stretch limited retirement savings and benefits over many years,” said Opperman. In response, Springboard shares the following financial facts in celebration of Women’s History Month 2011:
1. Women who have a written plan are more likely to accomplish their goal. Put your financial plan in writing. Something magical happens when a goal is written down. The brain starts working on solutions and you become emotionally committed.
2. Women who have a savings plan in place save more than women who don’t. Research shows that people with a savings plan in place save about twice as much as those with no plan.
3. Women tend to have lower retirement plan balances. Women often spend more time away from the workforce raising children or caring for aging parents. Women are also more likely to work in part-time jobs that don’t qualify for a retirement plan. As a result, women tend to earn less than men and have lower retirement plan balances and pension benefits. Springboard encourages women to make retirement planning a priority by putting money away sooner so that investments will have more time to grow.
4. Women are very likely to be solely responsible for financial decision making at some point in their lives. Women have a longer life expectancy than men and most married women will likely outlive their spouses. For this reason, women will need to know how to manage their finances especially during the years that they may find themselves living alone.
5. Women need four kinds of insurance. There are four kinds of insurance women should have: disability, life, health and homeowner’s insurance. No one wants to be over-insured. Nor do you want to be under-insured resulting in an unpleasant surprise when making a claim. Make an appointment with your provider and confirm that your coverage is exactly what you thought you were paying for. Inquire about ways to lower your premiums, and ask about any discounts for loyalty, good driving and the bundling of multiple polices.
6. Women are more likely to be victims of identity fraud than men. According to a study by the fraud-tracking firm Javelin Strategy & Research, women are 26% more likely than men to be the victims of identity theft. Identity theft prevention is an important aspect of overall personal financial literacy. According to research, the average identity theft victim in 2010 spent 21 hours and $373 out of pocket resolving the crime. Springboard’s Identity Theft Awareness booklet is available for free download at http://www.credit.org/medi a/docs/IDTdownload.pdf.
7. Women account for 85 percent of all brand purchases. According to research, women carry out most of the purchasing requirements for the family. Distinguishing the difference between wants and needs is key to living within a budget that includes saving for a rainy day.
8. Women should always maintain an up to date copy of their credit report. Much of your financial future depends on the contents of your credit report. Therefore, your first step should be to obtain your report, review it for accuracy and dispute any errors. Since you can access your credit report free of charge, there is no reason to neglect this important piece of your financial life. Consumers are allowed one free report from each of the three major bureaus once every twelve months. You can get all three at once, which is a good idea if a major purchase is on the horizon, or stagger your requests to check for identity theft. Access your report from www.annualcreditreport.com.
About Springboard Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management
SPRINGBOARD® Nonprofit Consumer Credit Management is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit personal financial education and counseling organization founded in 1974. Springboard is a HUD-approved housing counseling agency and a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, a national organization of nonprofit credit counseling agencies, and a member of the Association of Independent Credit Counseling Agencies. The agency offers personal financial education and assistance with credit counseling, housing counseling, debt and money management through educational programs and confidential counseling. Springboard is accredited by the Council on Accreditation, signifying the highest standards for agency governance, fiscal integrity, counselor certification and service delivery policies. The agency provides pre-bankruptcy counseling and debtor education as mandated by the bankruptcy reform law. The agency offers nationwide phone counseling services and has locations in California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas for in-person counseling sessions. Not all types of counseling are available in-person at all locations, please call for details. For more information on Springboard, call 800-449-9818 or visit their web site at www.credit.org.