Breadwinner Moms Demonstrate Strength and Resilience Dealing with Finances

Guidewell Financial Solutions identifies financial challenges women who are primary wage earners in their households face and offers help.

Baltimore, MD, July 07, 2015 --( Guidewell Financial Solutions, a member of the National Foundation for Credit CounselingⓇ (NFCCⓇ), recognizes the financial reality of women who are primary household wage earners depends on their circumstances. A recent study by Pew Research found that some 5.1 million (37%) are married mothers with higher incomes than their husbands. The remaining 8.6 million (63%) are single parents earning substantially less than their married peers. Although a significant dividing line exists between these two groups, a range of life experiences affect the financial health of both groups.

Director of Counseling and Client Services Nina Heck says each breadwinner mom’s financial challenges are grounded in her unique situation. “For example, young single moms may need help building personal finance confidence and skills. Those who divorce or become widowed may need help learning to live on a more limited income. Before we provide advice, we always listen and learn. This makes it possible to offer counseling and support tailored to each woman’s needs.”

The NFCC and The Ohio State University (OSU) recently worked together to survey participants of the NFCC Sharpen Your Financial FocusTM (Sharpen) program. Data from this program revealed that 52% of participating breadwinner moms were single and 32% were divorced. Results from the survey also pinpointed common financial challenges many of these working women face:

Reduced Income

Managing a household budget is difficult enough for anyone with a stable income, but sudden decreases can cause a damaging ripple effect in a family's finances. The OSU data revealed that 29% of breadwinner moms participating in the Sharpen program were affected by unemployment or underemployment. Nearly as many (22%) suffered negative financial consequences resulting from domestic conflict, including separation and divorce.

Increased Expense

Medical costs and increases in the family size are among the top challenges faced in this category. Personal savings is one way to offset the pain of unanticipated increases, but for the majority of single mothers, it is impossible to maintain savings growth on a shoestring budget. The Pew survey revealed that the median household incomes of divorced or single mothers was $57,000 less than their married counterparts who earned more than their husbands.

Bad Credit

Low credit scores and high levels of credit card debt can pose seemingly insurmountable financial obstacles for women seeking to balance family and work. However, there is hope: Sharpen results showed that revolving debt levels decreased by nearly half (49.5%) from pre-counseling to fourth quarter for wage-earning mothers in the program.

Counseling and education have proven to be significant change factors for breadwinner mothers who are facing tough financial choices. Guidewell Financial Solutions is committed to providing them with free, confidential budget and credit counseling in-person, by phone, or online. To schedule an appointment or learn more, please can call 1-800-642-2226 or visit today.

Heck concludes, “Working women want the best for their families. They are often selfless, resourceful, and strong. Our agency is proud to give them the information and money management tools to succeed!”

About Guidewell Financial Solutions

Guidewell Financial Solutions is an accredited 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency that helps stabilize communities by creating hope and promoting economic self-sufficiency to individuals and families through financial education and counseling. To learn more about the agency, visit or call 1-800-642-2227 for financial counseling or coaching. Maryland License #14-01 / Delaware License #07-01.

About the National Foundation for Credit Counseling

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC), founded in 1951, is the nation’s largest and longest serving national nonprofit financial counseling organization. The NFCC’s mission is to promote the national agenda for financially responsible behavior, and build capacity for its members to deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services. NFCC members annually help millions of consumers through more than 600 community-based offices nationwide. For free and affordable confidential advice through a reputable NFCC member, call (800) 388-2227, (en Español (800) 682-9832) or visit
Guidewell Financial Solutions
Nancy Stark