A tale of two retirements – which would you choose?

  Sam and Sally Smith have worked hard all their lives, paid their taxes and, now they have retired, they feel they are entitled to a full age pension. Jan and Jim Jones have also worked hard and paid their taxes. However, concerned that Australia’s aging population and ballooning pension bill will make it increasingly difficult to qualify for an age pension, they have sought to b...
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If I was 25 again I would…be wary of investment fads

    Today it’s crypto-currencies like Bitcoin. In 2000 it was technology shares. In 1987 it was shares in general, and way back in the seventeenth century investors were going nuts over tulip bulbs. When it comes to investment, fads occur when asset prices are driven up by irrational excitement, greed, and ‘FOMO’ - the fear of missing out. The fundamental rules of valuing ...
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The secret to ‘living the dream’

We all, to a greater or lesser extent, have an idea of our dream lifestyle. So how, as a nation, are we faring? To find out, the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) commissioned a survey of more than 2,600 people from around the country. The resulting Live the Dream report provides an insight into the extent to which we are collectively living our dream life and, more importantly,...
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Get ready for June 30 – NOW!

When it comes to getting the most (money) from your annual tax return, there is usually a lot to think about, so we’ve identified a few options that could open the door to some opportunities to save on tax. The key here is to plan ahead. Deductions — lower your tax liability             Pay now for some of next year's expenses If you have some spare cash available, payin...
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Thinking of living overseas?

Many Aussies dream of living in different countries at some point during their life. For some this remains just a dream but for hundreds of thousands of Australian residents who move away permanently from our shores, it is a reality. Whether it’s a long-term career move to New York or retiring in an island paradise, the decision to permanently leave Australia is one that requires sound financial...
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You’ve got all the time in the world until you don’t..

  This is the part of my job I work at extremely hard because I know the stakes are high but it doesn't need to be like this. I'm in the midst of negotiating with underwriters (insurers) for a 27 year to try and get covers after seeing me at one of the happiest times in their life, having just purchased their first home. Everything is on the up and life is looking bright as ever, but there...
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An insurance policy is a contract that gives you a basis; a leg to stand on.

Let me expound what I mean. It’s easy to play into the stigma that insurance is a waste of money or that it’s a grudge purchase, a play on moral obligation, but I disagree, I strongly disagree. To give context, I just managed a car insurance claim (general insurance) for my father. He was hit by a seemingly distracted driver who breached his lane, whether or not the driver saw him or misjudged...
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Balancing Life, Work and Money

Work-life balance. It’s something everyone seeks, but achieving it can seem an impossible task. Not only does the ideal balance vary from person to person, it can change frequently throughout life. If your wheel of life has developed a wobble, it might be time to do some repairs to regain stability for the journey ahead.     What’s the problem? The source of your imba...
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A smarter alternative to payday loans

Payday lenders are flourishing and while their advertising makes it all sound so simple, there’s always a price. Here is a better solution. Sarah decided to replace her clapped-out car with a shiny new one. The repayments were affordable: $350 per fortnight over three years – easy! All was going well until a month arrived that had five weeks instead of four. Sarah’s fortnightly rep...
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“Tap and go” and then what?

[caption id="attachment_1114" align="alignleft" width="150"] Tap and go spending[/caption] Talk about hammering the plastic. In November 2016 Australia’s 16.7 million credit card accounts were used to make 226 million transactions with a total value of $27.8 billion. We are currently paying interest on $32.2 billion worth of credit card debt, running up an annual interest bill of over $5.6 bi...
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