Five Things Every Woman Should Know About…. The Cost of Being a Single Mother

Good morning Women Supporting Women,

Happy Monday to you! I hope you had a beautiful Sunday and a fabulous Mother’s Day. I spent mine going to church and hanging out with my building mother :-). All of my kiddies are wrapping up finals so I spent the day reflecting on my accomplishments as a Mother/Bonus Mom and being thankful for my son, Jaden and my three bonus children.

Last week we had the opportunity to discuss 5 things Women should know about Financial Literacy. This week we’ll look at 5 things every woman should know about….the cost of being a single mother.

Think of it like this. There is nothing more empowering than ensuring a bright financial future for you and your children. Let’s start taking action by incorporating these 5 steps.

1. Position yourself for personal and professional success. Build a small tribe of supporters that believes in you and wants you and your children to succeed. Share your short- and long-term vision. Ask for assistance, introductions, and advice. Learn to negotiate the chain of command at work. Find out when and how key decisions are made, and by whom. Get current salary data and other relevant statistics so you can make a facts-based presentation to your employer, if you are underpaid. If you have not earned the promotion you feel you deserve, take on “stretch assignments” to show your capability and impact.

2. Protect your income. Knowing your family’s basic needs will be met, despite the unexpected, is a must. One of the simplest and most prudent steps a mother can take to ensure her family’s financial stability is income protection. Life insurance and disability insurance* can help keep a family on track should something happen to its matriarch.
The cost of being a single mother shows that women headed more than 80% of the nearly 12 million single-parent households surveyed by the U.S. Census Bureau in 2016. Single motherhood was once most prevalent among poor and minority women. But today, it is a mix of all races.

3. Utilize federal childcare accounts and credits. Childcare and education costs are a mother’s biggest expenses, after housing.(1) Confirm eligibility and consider taking advantage of a Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account. This pretax benefit account can be used to cover preschool, summer day camp, before- or after-school programs, and other eligible expenses. Check eligibility for the federal Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, as well.

4. Plan for your future. Traveling during retirement? Financial legacy for your children? Anything may be possible with proper planning. Assemble a team of financial, retirement, tax, and estate planning professionals to help you implement a financial strategy to help ensure you are prepared for the unexpected, and that your short- and long-term dreams are realized. Remember to update the beneficiary designations on all accounts and policies.

5. Prepare for college costs. Thirty years ago students at public, four-year institutions averaged $3,190 in annual tuition. Today they will pay $9,970 to send their children to their alma mater. (2) Consider ways to prepare for college costs. Even though certain states have free tuition, always be prepared to send them to the school of their choice.

Bonus: Give your children a financial head start. Permanent life insurance is a gift that lasts a lifetime as long as premiums are paid when due. It provides death benefit protection and accumulates cash value annually. The cash value can be borrowed against for college expenses, a home purchase, entrepreneurial endeavors, or any other milestone in your child’s life. Policy loans accrue interest and reduce the death benefit and cash value (please keep in mind; you do not have to pay back what you borrow unless you want to restore the death benefit to the original face amount). Life insurance premiums are lowest for young, healthy children. Think about a juvenile policy that can possibly be funded with gifts of cash from grandparents and other well-wishers.

Data collected from:
*Products available through one or more carriers not affiliated with New York Life Insurance Company, dependent on carrier authorization and product availability in your state or locality.
1 “Single Mother Statistics,” SingleMotherGuide.com, September 29, 2017.
2 U.S. Census Bureau, “One-Parent Unmarried Family Groups with Own Children Under 18,” 2016.

If you have any questions, feel free to respond here or email me at: thefinancialcomforter@gmail.com

Next Week: 5 Facts About Single Mothers

Have a beautiful and blessed week.

Marsha

Changing the lives in our community….one family at a time

 

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