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Women Need Better Retirement Planning Than Men

Updated on October 4, 2016

Population Over 60

Did you know that in the number of people in India over the age of 60 are on a record high since 1950? According to a report by The India Express, the population above the age of 60 is growing at twice the rate of the overall population in the country. According to a report released by the Ministry of Statistics, the number of people over the age of 60 increased from 7.6 crore in 2001 to 10.3 crore in 2011, indicating growth of 35.5%.

In the same period, 2001-2011, India's total population grew by 17.7%. Kerala was the state with the highest percentage of elderly at 12.6%, while Arunachal Pradesh with 4.6% of people over the age of 60 was the state with the least number of elderly. Along with the rise in the population, the age dependency ratio, which denotes the ratio of older dependents, in the country has also been increasing. From 10.9% in 2001, it had grown to 14.2% in 2011, the last date for which figures are currently available.

“Population aging is a global phenomenon. The elderly face a number of problems due to the absence of an assured and sufficient income to support themselves for their healthcare and other social securities. Loss of a social role and recognition, and non-availability of opportunities for creative and effective use of free time are also becoming a matter of great concern for the elderly persons”, said Amarjeet Kaur, Director-General, Ministry of Statistics.

Why Women Need Better Planning

The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs in India estimates that the average life expectancy of women is 69 years, as compared to 66 years for men. Due to this higher life expectancy, a woman will require an additional Rs 55 lakhs in savings than a man to manage her life expenses, says an article in The Economic Times. Apart from this, women in India work outside the home much less than the men on account of the fact that she has to take care of the children and the family.

Further, studies have shown that women in India on an average earn up to 18.8% less than men. Also, with higher life expectancy, one can expect higher cost of living and higher health expenses too. Statistics show that by 2050, the number of elderly women over the age of 60 will overtake the number of men in the same age group. All these factors highlight the importance of better retirement and saving plans for women so that they are financially secure and lead a peaceful life during their golden years.

How to Save Better

The best way of saving for the future is to invest a part of your income regularly. Doing so from an early age can help build a substantial corpus to help meet all financial contingencies, whenever the need arises. A good endowment policy can be an easy way to save, since it will help the policy bearer to save regularly over a particular period of time. Opting for endowment life insurance will give added advantages of life cover for the policy holder, apart from the regular savings.

An endowment life insurance policy mirrors a life insurance policy and offers full coverage to the family of the policy holder in case of any unfortunate event. Endowment insurance can especially be beneficial for women, since it would ensure adequate savings for a time when they are no longer earning and will give financial stability at an older age, say experts.

Also under the Section 80C and Section 10(10D) of the Income Tax Act of 1961, premiums paid towards these endowment policies are eligible for tax reductions. This offers additional savings on top of the endowment insurance, making it even more beneficial. So, with the number of elderly people, especially women, on the rise, it is advisable to opt for the right saving plan and start saving as early as possible.

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