As a financial adviser, it is likely you have clients from all walks of life.
You will no doubt have female clients who, like all people who come through your door, have unique financial circumstances that you review on a bespoke level.
Yet, despite societal progression bringing women’s opportunities to new heights in recent years, women in the UK still experience huge financial disadvantages compared to their male peers.
As an adviser, your job is to assess your clients’ financial viability, help them pursue opportunities to grow their wealth, and of course listen to their goals. When you speak with female clients, their financial dreams and goals (as well as the opportunities available to them) may be different to those of their male peers.
So, read on to find out three unmissable reasons you should pay attention to your female clients this year, according to the statistics.
1. Women are set to retire with less than half the pension pot of their male peers
Shockingly, a report from Now Pensions and the Pensions Policy Institute (PPI), published by MoneyAge in June 2022, revealed that the average woman is set to retire with £69,000 in her pension pot – a meagre sum compared to the average man, who will retire with £205,800.
This research reveals a grimly wide “pensions gap”. To catch up, the study found women would need to work an average of 18 more years than their male peers.
What’s more, it found women are “arguably worse off than before”, claiming women’s pensions have “hardly increased at all” in the past few decades – although the average pension pot has almost doubled.
These circumstances could prevail partly due to women’s “less straightforward” career paths, especially if they have families.
For example, taking breaks from work to care for children could reduce their pension contributions over a number of years. Indeed, the BBC reported in 2021 that 15% of British mums were “economically inactive” compared with just 1.9% of dads.
So, as an adviser, it is important to prioritise retirement savings when working with female clients. Especially while the cost of living crisis is dampening everyone’s ability to save for the future, your female clients could be most in need of solid advice as early as possible.
A realistic approach, combined with a rigorous understanding of how saving for retirement could be harder for female clients, could help them achieve their goals.
2. Female clients are statistically less likely to take investment risks
While investing opportunities are open to all, and are arguably more available than ever with the success of online trading, women are statistically less likely to invest.
Indeed, Unbiased reports that just 10% of women in the UK have a Stocks and Shares ISA, compared with 17% of men. Plus, the number of women who hold investments or unit trusts is only half of the number of men who do the same.
With investing being a “man’s world” for so many years, it could be argued that despite women making incredible advances in all industries, many still feel unable to break into the boys’ club and invest their wealth.
If you have female clients who are reluctant to invest, it is important to listen. Activate your “soft skills” and take an empathetic approach – all people have different attitudes to risk.
Nevertheless, it could be helpful to encourage female clients to invest their wealth strategically in the long term, so they have the opportunity to potentially yield positive returns and reach their life goals.
3. The advice gap includes women – but research shows they could be more willing to pay for advice than their male peers
By now you will be very familiar with an issue continuing to face financial advisers: the advice gap.
Despite the increasing availability of advice, many individuals with significant wealth are still completely unadvised, with 6 million UK adults falling into the “affordable advice” gap, Money Marketing reports.
You might be wondering: where do women stand in the gender advice gap? Despite some unequal opportunities, this research showed 20% of women said they would be willing to pay for affordable advice, compared to just 14% of men.
So, using marketing tools and prioritising women in all forms of outreach, you could find new female clients who are in great need of advice – and willing to pay for it.
When seeking out new female clients, tailoring your client journey is essential. To improve this, you could:
Work with marketing experts who can put your firm on the map
Join a network of advisers who can help you create bespoke plans for female clients affected by the above issues
Take courses to improve your soft skills and help you focus on offering holistic, goals-based advice.
Accessing these tools and resources can help you find women who have fallen into the advice gap, many of whom could add immense value to your practice.
Get in touch
To join our network and strengthen your practice, helping you to provide advice to those who need it most, email email@example.com or call 01925 637891.