“Women will talk more about sex, death and religion than money.” Tori Dunlap wants women to get the same financial respect as men.

By Michel Sincere

5 Tips from the “Financial Feminist”: “Stop spending money on things you don’t care about. »

By the age of 25, Tori Dunlap had saved $100,000 and used the money to start a business, called Her First $100,000. Three years later, the personal finance educator has over 2 million TikTok subscribers, a #1 rated podcast and a book slated for release later this year: “Financial Feminist: Overcome the Patriarchy’s Bullsh*t to Master Your Money and Build a Life You Love.”

Dunlap says she is now financially independent — a goal she believes all women should achieve. While Dunlap’s goal is to help women pay off debt, save money, and invest wisely, her advice applies to men as well.

A strong financial foundation is essential, says Dunlap, to provide the freedom to leave toxic work environments and other unhealthy situations. “I want every woman to feel financially confident,” she adds. “It’s so important to get a financial education. The goal is to use money as a tool to build a better life for you, your family and your community.”

1. Money is an uncomfortable topic for many women: The first step is to get more women talking about money. “Statistically, men are more likely to talk about money than women,” Dunlap said. “Women will talk more about sex, death and religion than money, and I’m working to change that.”

2. Create an emergency fund: One of the most important financial goals is to create an emergency fund. “You need at least three months of living expenses in a high-yield savings account,” advises Dunlap. “Start putting money aside to supplement your income in case of an emergency.”

3. Pay yourself first: A top priority, says Dunlap, is to pay yourself first. “Treat your future self like another bill,” she says. “Then you can save that money and put it on autopilot without having to think about it. I sometimes joke that a lot of people give Netflix more money each month than they give themselves. I’m not saying cancel Netflix, but you deserve to be given at least the amount of money you pay for movies.”

4. Set up an automatic transfer: Dunlap is a firm believer in automatic transfers. “No matter how much debt you owe, set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to your 401k, IRA (individual retirement account), or savings account weekly or monthly, or set up a direct deposit from your check. payroll. Also, auto-pay your bills as much as you can. You want to automate your financial life as much as possible to make saving money easier.

5. Rely on index funds: Like many financial experts, Dunlap recommends creating a long-term investment strategy. “The nice part of thinking of investing as a long-term commitment is that the strategy doesn’t change, so it’s a lot less work because you’re not managing it all the time.”

“I don’t think next week or next year, but 10, 20 or 30 years from now,” she says. “There are going to be ups and downs. The most important thing is to manage your emotions. For me, investing doesn’t have to be sexy. That’s why I will invest in index funds until I die.” His favorite is Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI).

During a bear market or recession, Dunlap does not change its index buying strategy. “I’m staying the course,” she says. “During a bear market, index funds are on sale. I also think strategically about building a larger emergency fund. If you don’t have an emergency fund or a fund that will supplement you, increase your income by negotiating a raise, or getting a secondary source of income even if it’s a few hours a week.”

Closing the gender gap

Studies show a huge gap between men and women when it comes to financial literacy, Dunlap says.

In the media, for example, financial advice for men, says Dunlap, focuses on investing, building wealth, negotiating salaries and buying real estate. By contrast, financial articles for women, she says, “are about deprivation, like ‘you’re not rich because you don’t work hard enough, you’re a frivolous spender, or you buy too many lattes or avocado toast “. That’s not true!”

Dunlap is determined to change this stereotype. “I want women to increase their wealth instead of shrinking. I need them to make strategic decisions about their money rather than minimizing expenses. Not all deprivation advice works (one of reasons why most plans don’t work). The goal is to find that balance between spending and saving.”

Dunlap says many women don’t realize investing is a two-step process. The first step is to deposit money into a retirement-focused investment account such as an IRA or 401k. The second step is to choose an investment, such as a stock or index fund. Dunlap says, “Too many women miss step two and the money sits in financial purgatory, earning no interest. It may be obvious to financial journalists, but so many women I meet have never bought money. investment. No one taught them how to do it.”

Dunlap also advocates “value-based spending” – figuring out what you really value and spending the majority of your discretionary income on those things. “I tell people don’t stop spending money,” she says. “Just stop spending money on things you don’t care about.”

Michael Sincere (michaelsincere.com) is the author of “Understanding Options” and “Understanding Stocks”. His latest book, “How to Profit in the Stock Market” (McGraw-Hill, 2022) is aimed at sophisticated traders and investors.

More: Hear Carl Icahn at the Best New Ideas in Money Festival Sept. 21-22 in New York City. The legendary trader will reveal his take on this year’s market madness.

-Michael Sincere

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswire

08-27-22 1128ET

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