Pension asset test changes imminent

Currently, pensions are reduced by $1.50/fortnight for every $1,000 of assessable assets above the assets-test free amount for a full pension. From 1 January 2017 this ‘taper rate’ increases to $3.00 per $1,000 of excess assets. Pension payments will phase out more quickly and the limit on assets up to which some pension is payable reduces. However, the assets threshold for a full pe...
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Protecting your estate

Everyone understands the importance of a Will, but how do you ensure your wishes are carried out when you’re no longer around? Who can contest your Will and what are their chances of success? Maud’s four children hadn’t visited in years so she left her fortune to an obscure charity for wayward arachnids. An extreme example, certainly, yet many would argue that Maud’s wish to bequeath h...
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Insurance in super – is your cover adequate?

You have insurance cover in your superannuation right? You probably think you’re adequately covered, yet if something were to happen to you, you might be in for an unpleasant surprise – and by then it might be too late. - Names are ficticious and the following is an example only - I met a new client recently who was in quite a state of distress. Maryanne is 38 and a stay-at-home mum wit...
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Achieving a state of independence

Still living at home? It might be an inexpensive lifestyle but if you’re not using this time to start planning your future, you’re not doing yourself any favours. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in 2011 29% of people aged 18-34 were living at home because it’s cheaper; but statistics show that many were no better-off financially, with most in this age group having cr...
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Is this insurance cover necessary?

Consumer credit insurance, also called loan or mortgage protection insurance, helps you meet repayments on a mortgage, personal loan, credit card or other loan contract if you lose your job, cannot work due to illness or injury, or die. It may also cover theft of your credit card or even replacement of faulty goods you have purchased with a credit card. It’s often sold when the loan or cr...
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Take advantage of NOW!

After Kylie completed university and had landed a well-paying job, her only plan was to enjoy her new financial freedom. She had living to do – the future was a long way off and would take care of itself ... wouldn’t it? Kylie’s first purchases were a trendy new hatchback car and expensive clothes suitable for climbing the corporate ladder. Enjoying her exciting lifestyle, she regularly ...
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Be different today so you can be different tomorrow

Every generation thinks life will be different – and of course, each one is right - but when it comes to planning for the future, while we’re young we have a habit of thinking there is still plenty of time. After all, when you’re in your mid-thirties or even early forties, retirement is still decades away; later if the government decides so! However, like anything forgotten too long, the...
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How will your redundancy entitlements be taxed?

Being made redundant can be one of the most stressful events in a person’s life. A large payout figure may look good at first glance but the effects of taxation can have a significant impact on the final amount received – adding even more stress. The first action is to always seek financial advice to ensure you get the most of a redundancy payment. Components of a payment There are se...
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6 smart ways to build savings

The word “thrifty” is rarely thought of in a positive sense but that’s not fair because if we continually spend more than we earn, our debts will eventually catch up and other words such as “default” or “bankrupt” might become more familiar. Being thrifty doesn’t mean doing without – quite the opposite. Here are six simple tips to build up your savings. Create a budget and...
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Do you want growth or income or both?

If you own an investment property you will be aware that the return from the investment comes from two sources: income in the form of rent paid by the tenant and growth in the form of an increase in the value of the property while you own it. Likewise from a share investment, an investor can receive dividends (income) and capital gain (growth). Many investors who buy shares and property focus o...
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