How Can Women Focus on Their Retirement?

Women face greater financial long-term risks than men due to several factors. These factors include having a longer lifespan, needing to pay for medical expenses, loss of spouse, and gender pay gap.

Senior Wealth Advisor Sandy Higgins highlighted: “There are varied reasons for this gap, but what holds true are the statistics and cumulative impact of this on retirement savings.”

While the difference between the wages of men and women do not seem large to many, the results can be substantial over time. Thus, it is important for women to focus on their retirement plan. Consider the following tips.


Despite having a tendency of being more responsible with money, women were not allowed to open a bank account in their name before the 60s. Today, men are still regarded as the primary financial providers for their families.

Dance with the times by being educated on your finances. Brush up your knowledge on personal finance to get more confident as time passes.


To grow your golden nest in the future, you must become aware of your shopping habits. Tracking your spending allows you to identify where your unnecessary and unplanned purchases happen. This way, you can modify it to achieve your retirement saving goals.


Always budget the expenses before signing a lease or making a major financial decision. It is important to recognize the full cost of your choices, including your rent or mortgage payment.

Experts say that the most common rule of thumb in housing is that your total housing costs should be no more than 30% of your gross monthly income. Stay as close to this amount as possible.


A woman’s marital situation can affect her retirement plan. For instance, a woman may outlive her husband by several years depending on their age difference. Second marriages and stepchildren can also affect retirement planning.

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Structure a realistic and attainable retirement plan. Do not forget about your husband’s assets! Know which assets will be divided among you and your children once your spouse dies.

Sources: 1 & 2



Singapore Parents Spend More Money on Children’s Needs than Retirement

Starting a family requires careful planning. With a clear idea of what it entails and the schemes available to help ease new parents’ financial load, you will be able to embrace one of life’s greatest blessings.

As you allocate your budget, you must consider both your childcare expenses and your retirement fund. Prioritizing these two is easier said than done. A 2021 study by AIA Singapore revealed that young families in Singapore have deprioritized planning for their retirement to give way for the monthly expenses on their children.

The participants of the study (i.e., parents) were found to be spending 2.5 times more money on their children’s monthly expenses, rather than taking charge of their own retirement planning. These Singapore parents spend almost 20% of their income on their children’s needs and allocate less than 7% on their retirement fund. Furthermore, 70% shared that they intend to either increase or maintain the amount of income allocated to their children’s expenses. The increase of allocation to the children’s expenses is affected by the higher childcare costs amidst the pandemic.

Apart from this, the pandemic also affected their savings. One in three Singaporeans’ savings was negatively impacted in 2020, with a median amount of between S$251 to S$500 set aside monthly for retirement. It is challenging to find a balance between all the primary categories of your budget, but you must not overlook the importance of retirement planning.

“Retirement planning is an essential part of securing our longer-term financial security, not just for parents, but for the entire family, so everyone can look forward to a brighter future with peace of mind,” said Melita Teo. Melita Teo is AIA Singapore’s Chief Customer and Digital Officer.

As parents, you want to support your children by giving them the best opportunities to secure their future. Hence, you must consider creating a retirement plan to help navigate your seamless transition to the golden years. With this retirement plan, you will not need to fully rely on your children.

Start by reviewing your financial situation and financial plans. Establish a fresh budget for your household that will accommodate both your childcare costs and your retirement fund.

Talk to professionals, your trusted friends, and family members to have an idea of what it costs to pay for your child’s needs and your personal retirement needs.

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Research on various government schemes such as Enhanced Baby Bonus, Enhanced MediSave Grant for Newborns, and other subsidies for center-based infant and childcare. Newborns who are registered as Singapore Citizens at birth are automatically insured under MediShield Life. These schemes and benefits can help free up some of your expenses to boost not only your childcare budget, but also your retirement fund.

Sources: 1, 2, & 3


Why you should not retire early

elderly workers in singapore

There’s emerging proof retirement doesn’t just mean a few more years of tennis, fishing, and overseas trips.

Choosing when to retire is a complicated choice that isn’t only based on financial considerations. Your overall wellness, family duties, and personal goals all play a role or should play a large part. The most crucial question is whether you’ve considered what you want to accomplish with your senior years, no matter how long they may be.

Whatever your answer may be, here’s why we think you should not retire early.


The added hours in your calendar may contribute to depression and isolation if you don’t have a strategy on how to manage your time. Work stimulates various aspects of a person’s life; it may be tough to retain a sense of direction if you don’t have weekly pursuits planned, coffee dates with peers, or obligations with volunteer groups in order.

Social issues

Friends and colleagues who are the same age as you but still work may have wholly distinct lifestyles. They may also earn more than they did five years ago, making it harder to find common ground to talk about or endeavors to do collectively. You may end up losing your connection with social networks that you have spent your working years cultivating.

Lack of money
a spilled jar of retirement coins

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Even if you realized for certain that the typical retirement length would hold true for you, it’s still possible that you won’t be able to fund your retirement. Indeed, the standard guideline of saving 10 times your final pay before retiring sometimes ignores crucial considerations such as old debt, unforeseen healthcare costs, and growing living expenses.

No turning back

It won’t be simple if you come to your senses after taking early retirement and wish to return to the workplace. Seeking new work opportunities when you’re over 50 might be difficult, even if you’ve voluntarily resigned from your prior position. If you do find work, you will have to accept much lower pay. Will you be ready to eat the humble pie and settle for less?

Health considerations

Continuing to work while you can isn’t only about money; it might also be about your overall wellness. Early retirees are more prone to be physically and psychologically ill than those who work for longer periods. Unfortunately, the prevalence of mental health problems among retirees is substantially greater.

Shrinking retirement funds
an old man looking at his bills

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Early retirement has both advantages and disadvantages. To begin with, you cease increasing your wealth just when compound interest is reaching its greatest impact. Someone who quits saving at 60 years old might lose big bucks in portfolio growth compared to another who decides to do it at 65. Furthermore, when you retire, your nest egg not only begins to shrink, but it also starts diminishing by whatever it takes to support your standard of living.

Many individuals aspire to retire at the age of 50 or even younger. Those who leave a job at such an early age, on the other hand, may not find retirement meaningful. Your finances or investment portfolio may not represent how much fun you will have in the next decades. Consider the abovementioned points before you make the move.


6 Essential Reasons Why You Should Learn To Invest

Investing is the act of allocating your money in the hopes that you will achieve a profit in the future. The money generated from your investments can provide income and fulfillment of long-term financial security.

Now is the ideal time to start investing! Allow me to convince you with these “6 Essential Reasons Why You Should Learn To Invest”.


Many people do not think about investments until they are well into their 20s or 30s. Although opportunities to invest may come before that, investing is not something that is automatically embraced by all. Do not panic! You can become an investor at any age.

The sooner you open an investment account, the better it will be for your financial future. Take advantage of the greatest asset of all – time. Investing while you are young gives you the chance to work smarter. Would you rather save a considerable amount of money every year or save a huge amount of money later in life? Think about that.


Investing your money allows you to grow your wealth. Most investment vehicles such as stocks and bonds offer returns on your money over the long run. The return allows your money to build over time.

The money you build can be used to create a business or expand your existing one. Many investors support entrepreneurs and contribute to the creation of new products and new jobs. The more successful entities you have backed up, the stronger your returns will be.


Let us face it! You need to be prepared for your retirement. You should save money for retirement as you are working. You can put your retirement savings into a portfolio of diversified assets such as real estate, precious metals, stocks, mutual funds, and bonds. As soon as you retire, you will be able to live off from the funds that you have earned.

Base your personal tolerance of risk on your age and lifestyle. You may employ greater risks to increase your chances of earning greater wealth in your younger years. Becoming more conservative with your investments as you grow older can be wise.


Learning about investments will enable you to know the power of compound interest. Compound interest allows your money to make more money for you. It pays to invest early and often. The longer your money can benefit from the power of compound interest, the higher your gains will be as time goes by.

Say you invest S$1,000 this year and you earn a 10% return on that. This means that you will end up having S$1,100. If you do not contribute anything next year, you will still make money through the compound interest. Instead of earning another S$100, you will earn S$110 because you are getting 10% from a balance of S$1,100. You will have S$1,210 by the end of next year.


You need to diversity your assets as your investments make one part of your financial picture – not all of it. You should not keep all your money in cash, in your house, or in your car. Instead, invest in a variety of categories to cushion unforeseen losses. It makes more financial sense to keep your emergency fund, your house (real estate), your hard assets (e.g., car), and your portfolio of investments.


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Learning how to strategically invest your money allows you to reach your financial goals. If your money is earning a higher rate of return than your savings account, you will be able to earn more money within a faster period. This return on your investments can help you reach your financial goals such as buying a car, starting your own business, or putting your children through university.

Sources: 1 & 2



5 Luminous Lessons Harry Potter Taught Us About Money

The magical story of a young wizard named Harry Potter has captured the hearts of fans of all ages and with a good reason. In fact, I am wearing my Hufflepuff shirt while I am writing this.

Despite being in a fictional world, the Harry Potter characters’ financial problems cannot be solved with a wave of a wand. They also have to struggle with the challenges of saving, spending, and growing money throughout the series. Here are just some of the personal finance lessons that you can learn form the wizarding world of Harry Potter:


In the “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” book, Ron and Harry crashed a car into a tree. It caused an irreparable damage to a car that they do not own. This scenario taught us the importance of having a car insurance.

In Singapore, it is mandatory to have your car insured. Examine your options and look for an auto-insurance that suits your needs and your budget. Some of the plans that you may consider are the FWD, Aviva, and NTUC Income auto-insurance plans. FWD has three auto-insurance plans from Classic to Prestige. Its annual premiums start from S$731.38. Aviva offers three auto-insurance plans too from Lite to Prestige. Its annual premiums start from S$883.12. Lastly, NTUC Income has Drivo Classic and Premium plans. Its annual premiums start from S$$970.35. Annual premiums are usually based on the driver’s profile and the car itself.


After living in an uncomfortable cupboard under the stairs for eleven years, the book’s main protagonist Harry Potter found out that he was a wizard and that his parents left him a considerable amount of money. His family’s wealth was beyond what he can imagine! Although his parents died at a very young age, when he was just a baby, it was clear that they a robust financial plan in place. They left all their wealth to Harry. This helped him secure his school supplies and daily needs throughout the years.

Unforeseen events can strike at any moment. It is important to save up for your retirement as soon as possible. Moreover, you must create a will that ensures the list of beneficiaries on all of your savings and investment accounts.


Harry not only benefits from his parents’ wealth, but also reap the rewards of compound interest. His money was untouched for eleven years. When he opened his vault for the first time at the Gringotts Wizarding Bank, he discovered the amount of gold and money that was in his vault. Despite having this wealth, he did not lead a lavish lifestyle.

Like Harry, you may benefit from compound interest by leaving your money untouched for years in a bank or by investing your money for the long haul.


As I said above, he did not lead a lavish lifestyle. Harry was humble. In fact, he wore the same glasses for seven years. He appreciates what he has and exemplifies this trait the most in the first book. When Hagrid gifts him Hedwig the owl, he was amazed and accepted it wholeheartedly. He was also very grateful when he was gifted the Nimbus 2000 by Professor McGonagall.

In our world, it is easy to be caught by all the sale items and designer brands. However, you must remember to strike a balance between your needs and wants. Appreciate what you have and live within a realistic budget that you set.


Harry’s immense fortune was stored in the Gringotts Wizarding Bank, located in the heart of London. The bank is operated and guarded by goblins. These goblins serve as the gatekeepers to the underground vaults. It is often described as the safest place in the Wizarding World.

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While you cannot keep your wealth within the protection of magical spells and goblins, you can secure your money in other ways. Firstly, you may set up an auto-deposit scheme to send a portion of each paycheck to your savings account. Secondly, you may store your emergency fund in a place where you will not be tempted to spend it frivolously. For instance, you may set up a different account exclusively for that. Lastly, secure your online banking apps through Two-Factor Authentication.

Sources: 1, 2, & 3