PlanSingle means having a strategy that works for you whether you remain single, stay married, or find yourself single again.
A key component in a successful strategy is having the right advisors. But many women are not happy with one or more of their advisors and many married women find one of their advisory relationships works better for her husband than for her.
Widows benefit from finding new advisors more attuned to their needs but this is arguably one of the worst times to have to establish a new trusting relationship.
Consider these findings: 78% of women report being “unhappy” with the financial services industry , and 87% of women struggled to find an advisor with whom they could connect . Contributing to this may be that almost two thirds of advisors do not believe female clients should be viewed any differently than male clients . This may be one cause of women feeling less prepared and not as well educated about investments and other financial issues as men .
These facts may be behind the widely quoted statistic that -80% of widows change advisors within one year of losing their spouse . Widows benefit from finding new advisors more attuned to their needs but this is arguably one of the worst times to have to establish a new trusting relationship. It would be vastly better if they had a good relationship to guide them through the traumatic experience and accompany them into their new lives.
If you do not have the kind of relationship with an advisor you would trust to guide you through a difficult time in life, now is the time to evaluate your options. Here are a few principles to help you decide whether you have the right advisors:
Do you feel listened to? Does your advisor ask questions to check on your level of comfort and understanding? Do they listen to your questions without interrupting an provide thoughtful answers? Is the advisor’s attention split evenly between you and your spouse?
If you have a partner, do your advisors seek to understand you individually and as a couple? Do they work to develop strategies congruent with both your outlooks and feelings about risk? Do they work to help you and your partner develop a common language and agreement on a strategy you are both comfortable with?
Is your advisor the person you would want to guide you through difficult times? If you are single now, is this the advisor you will want to stick with when the markets go down or you experience a serious financial setback? If you are married, is this the person you want by your side as you grieve the loss of your spouse and to help you get back on your feet?
Do your advisory relationships work for you (or both of you)? If not, it may be wise to seek the right counselors while times are calm. Having the right professional relationships, having the right scaffolding around you, before any difficulties or even tragedies arise is the best way to PlanSingle.