Women and Money PWiC

Women and Money: Taking Control of Your Financial Future

Women in The United States represents more than half of the US labor force, 20% work in tech industry and the number is on the rise, increasingly pursue higher education, accounts for 49% of primary bread winners, many outlive their spouse by about 5 years, but still many women are unsure about money management and depends on their spouses/male counterparts for financial choices.

Like many women, I have felt overwhelmed with this topic. But I was lucky that I got a chance to attend a workshop by Zainab Khan on June 19th at Redmond Library. The workshop talked about the financial goals’ women should set for themselves and how to achieve them step by step. We talked about the savings and investing opportunities and briefly went over estate planning.

My takeaways from the workshop:

  1. Understand your cash flow -track your earnings and spending diligently. It is important to know your fixed and variable expenses
  2. Create an emergency fund — set aside specific amount of money for any unexpected events in life. At a minimum, you should have three months of living expenses in your emergency fund.
  3. If you have any debt, make it a very high priority to reduce debit and credit cards balances with the highest interest rate first. Always maintain good credit score.
  4. Choose credit cards wisely. If you and family loves to travel, choosing a card that gives travel points might not be a bad idea. Always check interest rates, annual fees before getting a credit card.
  5. Invest wisely: Invest in CDs, mutual funds, IRAs, Roth IRAs, company sponsored retirement plans, annuities.
  6. Start Your 401(k) Contributions Early and maximize Employer Matching Contributions.
  7. Always have a plan for retirement, write down what you want to do when you are retired and work backwards.
  8. Don’t take on your partner’s or spouse’s debt when you marry. Ask about their financial situation and if in doubt you may want to protect yourself with a pre-nuptial agreement. They’re not only for the rich.
  9. Protect your assets by proper estate planning.
  10. Financial advisers at any bank can help you plan for your future. It is not a bad idea to hire a professional.

About the author:

Aisha Salman

Aisha Salman is a Program Manager at Eastside Emergency Physicians (Swedish). She works with a dynamic team of healthcare providers who are focused on providing extraordinary care to the patients with extraordinary caring. Outside of work Aisha is a volunteer by heart. She gives her time to The Citizens Foundation (TCF), TCF builds schools in the underprivileged areas of Pakistan. This year her focus was to start TCF youth group which she successfully accomplished. She also volunteers at the free health clinic at the local mosque, active member of PTSA, involved in many cultural events, from planting trees at Marymoor park to homeless meal programs; she has tried many things and loved them all. She believes in building a beautiful community around us, so we never feel lonely.

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