Most business owners, CEOs and executives are laser focused on driving their business or enterprise towards success. They are responsible for preserving and expanding sales and revenue. They are responsible for hiring and firing. They are responsible to investors and stakeholders to manage risk and ensure success. They handle client relationships, research and development, marketing and IT… As leaders they wear many hats and carry a lot of weight on their shoulders.
I met Charlotte and her Husband Randy years ago at a Green Drinks in Philadelphia. It was before the days of Tesla, widespread solar power and organic food sections at the grocery store. People got together to share a beer and dream about a future that would be more sustainable. Things have changed a great deal in the past few years.
Charlotte is a graphic designer based in Philadelphia. She has agreed to share some of her experiences and insights so that we all might have an easier path to financial security.
Charlotte has been interested in supporting socially responsible investing for many years. I asked her what it means to her. Charlotte said, “For one thing it’s smart. We have a finite amount of resources and we are running out of them. To continue doing things in the old ways is to set yourself up for failure. Green investment is where the growth will be.”
The purpose of life insurance is to manage risk. Individuals and families need protection in the event a primary bread winner passes away.
Several factors drive what life insurance costs for an individual. Women tend to live longer, so their cost for life insurance is lower than it is for men. The healthier a person is, the less expensive it is for them to obtain life insurance. People who smoke pay significantly more for life insurance.
We are entering a new age…
According to Bloomberg, over the past few years millions of people have entered the ranks of the self-employed. The digital economy has made it easier for the business savvy to go off on their own and be their own boss. Facebook has brought people closer together, texting and email have increased communication. Associations and Meet-up groups create networking opportunities. LinkedIn in particular has created rolodex transparency within companies and whole industries. (1)
While being self-employed is not for everyone, it is easier now than ever before. A connection on Facebook or LinkedIn is a potential client. Whatever you do, whatever your expertise the reality is there are hundreds and thousands of people who need to talk to you. Many of these are newly sprouted entrepreneurs as well. Building connections to individuals, as well as businesses is the new road to success.
In Iceland the government there recently passed a law making it illegal to pay women less than men.(1)
A recent study by Economic Policy Institute found that women earn 74 cents for every $1 earned by a man with similar education and experience. This wage gap has always existed and is disturbing in a society founded upon equality and justice. (2)
This wage gap has important implications for women and their financial security, especially during retirement.
I have had four clients experience the passing of a beloved family member in the past 6 months. All ages, all walks of life. To a person they struggle with the desire to have their father or spouse or daughter back with them again, and how to move forward without them.
I have lost both of my parents; my mother passed away at 42 from lung cancer. I know the pain they suffer. Looking back, her illness and death really hurt my father and younger brother financially. She didn’t have life insurance. Due to the illness many of the family’s assets were exhausted. My father and brother did the best that they could do, but it was a difficult journey.
In the United States, there is a huge number of households which are unprotected or under protected by Life Insurance. In a recent LIMRA study 7 in 10 households believe would be in serious financial distress if an adult in the household passed away.
37 million households have no life insurance.
Another 33 million households do not have sufficient life insurance to count themselves as protected.
Loss of a parent shatters the life of a child. Period.
Loss of a parent’s love.
Loss of a guide through life’s challenges.
Loss of protection and security.
These are losses that are beyond measure and replacement. But the truth is these losses can be worsened by the financial impact that comes from a lack of planning and losing a parent.
7 in 10 of all households said they would have trouble covering everyday living expenses after several months if the primary wage earner died.
My son was born when I was 30 years old. Honestly, I didn’t get life insurance until I was 36. I had never been taught the importance of using Life Insurance to manage risk and protect your family. Recent studies show that I’m not alone. There is a huge gap in the level of financial literacy in the United States.
According to a recent study by LIMRA;
- Among households with children under 18, 4 in 10 say they would suffer immediate financial trouble if a primary wage earner died today.
- Another 3 in 10 would have trouble keeping up with basic living expenses after several months.
- Overall, 7 in 10 of all households said they would have trouble covering everyday living expenses after several months if the primary wage earner died.
To be clear 37 million households have no life insurance… none…
In March of 2017 a landmark study was released connecting financial security and death rates in the United States. The information is sobering and should be the focus of policy changes at all levels of government.
A recent study by Princeton Professors Anne Case and Angus Deaton titled, “Mortality and morbidity in the 21st century,” shows the connection between the rising mortality rates of the middle class in the US and “a measurable deterioration in economic and social wellbeing”.
This deterioration has not suddenly developed. Rather, “Case and Deaton document an accumulation of pain, distress, and social dysfunction in the lives of working class whites that took hold as the blue-collar economic heyday of the early 1970s ended, and continued through the 2008 financial crisis and the subsequent slow recovery.”