All the Single Ladies … Should Prepare for their Retirement

Published on November 15, 2016

Hint: a self-directed retirement plan can be a great way to do so.

Regardless of all the societal advances we’ve seen in our country over the past few decades—the rise of the single working woman, same-sex marriages—it still remains an issue: many women will be single in their retirement years. Regardless of marital status in earlier, working years, many women will end up single—as a choice, through divorce or widowhood—later in life. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that 54 percent of women ages 65 and up were single in 2014.

Older baby boomers are still part of the “man as breadwinner who took care of everything” generation, which exacerbates the problem. And let’s face it, it is still overwhelmingly the mother who takes time off from work to raise the children, or becomes the caregiver when family members fall ill or require assistance. Add to those factors the prevailing gender pay gap and that more women work part time than full time, contributing to the fact that over their lifetime, women typically earn less and save less (and, they generally live longer than men, so their retirement horizon is extended). All these elements contribute to many women being behind the financial eight ball historically when it comes to retirement savings.

While younger boomers and Generation X women may have lived or are living a very different kind of lifestyle, and are taking care of their future financial needs more proactively, the fact remains that many women are woefully unprepared financially, and will struggle to maintain their current standard of living after they stop working or enter their senior years.

Retirement preparation – now and later.

There are plenty of measures to take today: Talk to your spouse about beneficiary assignment on all life insurance policies and bank accounts. Meet with a financial planner you trust to discuss your situation now and your potential situation later, especially regarding your Social Security strategy. Take a more active role in managing the household finances. Have long-term care insurance to help with medical costs during your later years. Put yourself on a budget and stick to it.

Propel your retirement preparation through self-direction.

The big step to take: fund your IRA! And, if you are comfortable making your own investment decisions and wish to include alternative assets in your portfolio, open a self-directed retirement plan. After all, today’s workers cannot rely on Social Security for income during retirement, and it was never set up to be the sole source of income for retirees (although this has dramatically shifted over the years). Be proactive and create retirement wealth through investments you know and understand, such as real estate, precious metals, commodities, private placements and many more.

Self-directed retirement plans are administered by third-party professionals, like Next Generation Trust Services, that review and execute the transactions, hold the assets, and manage all the paperwork associated with the plan.

Next Generation Trust Services makes it easy to get started on the path to a more eclectic, and potentially more lucrative, retirement portfolio. In addition to the information available in our white paper on the topic and on our website, our Starter Kits walk you through the steps needed to open and fund a new self-directed retirement plan. Once you’ve carefully researched your investment, send us the instructions to execute your transaction and you’re on your way to being better prepared for your retirement needs.

If you have questions about the various nontraditional investments these plans allow, contact our helpful professionals for answers at or 888.857.8058.