A recent report from Swiss Bank UBS (UBS) highlighted differences in how men and women think about wealth and leaving a legacy.
The research found that women are more likely to frame financial planning and investments within the context of personal values. Women tend to be motivated by a desire to make a positive impact in the world and their financial decisions reflect this. For example, women may be more likely to prioritize charitable giving and supporting businesses they believe in.
The report also found that women see wealth primarily as a means to attain financial security and a long-term lifestyle for themselves and their family, rather than a means to instant gratification or immediate ends.
Concern for Kids
Women also approach legacy planning differently from men.
The report found that women strongly favor bequeathing to heirs after their death, as opposed to men, who are more likely to hand over assets beforehand. Reasons given for this include remaining flexible, uncertainty regarding the details of estate planning, and avoiding causing their kids to worry about their health.
Concerns about quarrels among heirs also weigh more heavily on women than men. The report noted 44% of women have this worry, versus 37% of men.
Tips for a Smooth Transition
The report suggested family conversations about inheritance can help smooth wealth transfers.
Luckily, women are evidently more comfortable talking with family members about money than men. Discussing legacy planning with heirs can make the process far less stressful — particularly when these conversations are had long before necessary. Including kids early on may stave off conflicts stemming from a lack of understanding or unpleasant surprises.
The study found that women are more interested than men in promoting financial education to their heirs as well. So once again, these crucial chats may play to women’s strengths. Intentionally planning for financial and legacy transitions is worth the time, effort, and money — if only to provide peace of mind for all.
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