"We deal with life concerns, such as how to talk about money with a child or how to evict a tenant," she said, explaining that her clients "value one-on-one communication, in-office meetings and the ability to call me anytime."
According to certified financial planner Eleanor Blayney, women often differ from men in how they make decisions. "They go slower and ask, 'How will this impact my family?'" she said. Blayney is the consumer advocate for the Certified Financial Planning Board of Standards, working on the organization's Women's Initiative. She is also the author of a planning guide called "Women's Worth."
The CFP Board is a nonprofit organization that looks to foster professional standards for certified financial planners.
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"Often, there's a confidence gap between men and women: Investing causes women more anxiety," she said. "They feel they need to know everything before they make a financial decision."
To address this gap, Thornton at Wealthcare for Women sets two goals for his clients, who are frequently handling their overall finances for the first time.
First, he works with them to make smart decisions, especially in the aftermath of widowhood or in preparation for divorce. Second, he educates them so they won't be taken advantage of going forward.