Don’t call it “The B-Word”, mama! Building a budget has huge benefits, for women in particular. Here’s some help if you find it a little bit scary.
The “B” word.
How many of us cringe when we hear it? The word “budget” elicits different reactions: fear, anxiety, or indifference. Rarely, though, does the word make us jump with joy.
As women, we hear many myths relating to our ability or inability to manage money. One of these myths is that women don’t know how to handle money, or anything related to finance. Global trends, however, indicate otherwise: in the Asia-Pacific region, the vast majority of entrants into the accountancy profession are now very much tipped in favour of females.
In Canada, the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants reports that over a quarter of its current membership is female and that number is growing – while the gender breakdown is 50/50 among its accounting students. The Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau in the U.S. cites “accountants and auditors as 61.8% female, tax preparers as 65.9% female and tax examiners and collectors as 73.8% female.”
Why then does the myth persist? Because women also believe it. As a result, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy when women get into debt because they claim they don’t have enough money. In reality, one reason why women don’t have enough money is the inequity of salary between women and men. Men, especially in Singapore are still paid more than their female counterparts. According to a wage analysis done by ValuePenguin from data taken from the Ministry of Manpower, the median gross monthly income of men was S$3,991, 18% higher than the median for females at S$3,382. In some industries, the pay gap reached 40%!
Another factor is that women are usually the default money handlers in the home. Often, they are the ones who see the bills and pay them, all while allocating and juggling their monetary resources. As a result, women are the ones who experience the anxiety and stress of managing the household finance and debt. The latest Singapore statistics show that personal loans account for 25% of total household liabilities. That’s $80.9B of personal loans, excluding mortgage loans.
So, mamas, no need to beat yourself up when you feel overwhelmed by all the bills you have to pay or when you feel that there’s not a lot of money to spare. What matters is what you can do to lessen the stress of managing your money.
Creating a budget can bring you great benefits. Some of the benefits are: 1) a budget helps you organise your spending and savings, and 2) keeps you focused on your money goals.
To make it easier for women to handle their personal finance and remove the stress from budgeting, the Finance group of the PrimeTime Business and Professional Women’s Association is conducting an interactive workshop for women on Budgeting. Entitled BYOB (a play on bring your own bottle of wine), the workshop aims to assist women to build their own budget in 6 easy steps. The organisers want to show women that budgeting can be fun, regardless of the size of the income.
All the Details!
What: BYOB: Build your Own Budget in 6 Easy Steps
When: 3 May 2018, 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Where: The Boardroom, Workcentral, 190 Clemenceau Avenue, #06-01, Singapore Shopping Centre, 239924 (behind Dhoby Ghaut MRT)
How Much: PrimeTime members: $25; Guests and Walk-ins: $30
RSVP: Click here to RSVP!
By Sheila Berman, Deputy Marketing Director, PrimeTime Business and Professional Women’s Association