Starting Over

What if you suddenly split up or your partner passes away? It can be a shock to have to deal with everything on your own. To ensure you are protected, how do you make sure you know how your finances work and have access to them? This includes your bank accounts, will, super and investments. Whether you're with or without kids, have a mortgage or not – good planning helps alleviate the pressure on your finances and set you up for the future. 

So You Want to Work for Yourself

Katherine Hann | 21-Nov-2017

Become a freelancer, be your own boss, and do what you enjoy. Many people choose to go down this path either on the side of a regular job or dive straight in.

But many of us don’t really know where to start or are worried about failure. Here are 4 tips from ASIC (the Australian Securities and Investments Commission):

1. Manage your Cash Flow

Many businesses have peaks and troughs – you may be paid more at certain times of year only to be in a ‘drought’ at others, yet those expenses are still coming in. Remember to pay yourself a wage and plan ahead for holidays .

2. Set aside money for Tax

If you wait until tax time you could be hit with a nasty bill or a hefty penalty from the ATO. Remember, when you earn an income you have to report it and pay tax where it is due: just like everyone else. Take into account GST and keep records.

3. Consider your Retirement Savings

This is a big one: you don’t have an employer who pays your Super Guarantee; you pay your own super. If you leave it, you may find you don’t have enough to live on in retirement. You can save on tax by contributing some of those earnings into super and claiming a tax deduction for them. Be careful: there are limits to the amount you can contribute and you need to get the timing right.

4. Protect your Income

You don’t have sick leave or annual leave. If you get sick or injured then the income from your business may stop (with expenses still coming in!). Income protection (IP) insurance pays up to 75% of your income, and the premiums can be tax deductible.

 

Why Women are Now Working Longer

Katherine Hann | 27-Sep-2017

There appears to be a growing share of Australians working past age 65. A survey from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showed that this is significantly higher among women. Click here for more details. 

The labour force participation of women aged 55-64 has doubled from 1995 (<30%) to 2015 (~60%).

There are many reasons why people would choose to continue working: financial circumstances, disability, health, and caring or volunteering responsibilities all play significant roles.

It is also important to note that work satisfaction was one of the big factors: Think about being retired for 20 years- would you like to have something to do?

Women are shown to be under greater pressure when it comes to caring for older relatives, so they are trying to juggle unpaid carer duties while also working.

One in eight (12.7%) women who care for a relative reported that the main reason for leaving work was to commence their caring role.

How long you need to work until retirement will depend on your specific needs and circumstances. It’s a balance between how much you could work, how much you want to work, and how much you need to work to get by on an income you are comfortable with.

If you would like to speak with Katherine Hann regarding retirement planning, contact her for a no obligation first meeting on 08 8299 9927.

 

Women and Retirement

Katherine Hann | 31-May-2016

Women and Retirement-face your future!

Many Australian women face an insecure retirement. Men's superannuation balances at retirement are on average twice as large as women's.

In practice this means that women, particularly single women, are at greater risk of experiencing poverty, housing stress and homelessness in retirement.

The combination of the gender pay gap, time out of full time work and a concentration of women in lower paid occupations mean women are retiring with approximately half the superannuation of men.


Some of the key recommendations in regard to superannuation are:
• Superannuation guarantee should be paid on the Commonwealth Paid Parental Leave Scheme.
• Superannuation tax concessions assist people with lower superannuation balances.
• The Australian Government retain the Low Income Superannuation Contribution beyond 30 June 2017.
• Increase in the superannuation guarantee rate to 12 per cent, and earlier than planned.
• Pay the superannuation guarantee to employees whose salary is less than $450 in a calendar month.

As a woman and a financial adviser, I feel strongly that the Australian Government support the unique needs of women preparing for their retirement, no matter what their age.

It is never too late to prepare and with the help of a financial adviser you will be in the best place possible to retire with dignity, grace and a position of financial strength.

Contact Katherine Hann on 08 8299 9927 or email katherinehann@internode.on.net to make an appointment.

 


Lost Super

Katherine Hann | 13-Apr-2016

How to find your lost super

Have you ever had more than one job, changed address or changed your name?

If you haven’t let your super fund know, you may have lost super.

On average, every working Australian has three super accounts potentially costing them thousands of dollars over a working life.

This is your money, so how do you find it?

If you have any of your old statements filed away, drag them out and look for the name of the Super fund and your member or policy number.

You can use the ATO’s (Australian Tax Office) MyGov service to see details of all of your super accounts. You must register for a login, which can also give you access to other government services such as Centrelink and Medicare.

Use the ATO’s SuperSeeker service which searches the Lost Members Register and other ATO records, such as ATO-held super accounts and unclaimed super money.

The federal government has changed the super rules which means that your ‘lost’ super account could be transferred to the ATO without your consent. Don’t worry though, you can get your super back from the ATO.

Try AUSfund which looks after the lost super of millions of Australians for some of the largest super funds in Australia.

BEWARE-before transferring all of your lost super into one account (which is known as super consolidation) it is essential to check if you have current insurance within any of your super funds.

If you transfer (or rollover) your super to another fund, you could lose your insurance. Consider if you might have had a medical condition that no longer allows you to apply for insurance-this could put you in a worse position!

However, the best way to increase your super, consolidate your funds and make sure you don’t lose any of your insurance is to make an appointment with a Financial Adviser.

Katherine Hann has the expertise and knowledge to put you in a better position with your super. Make an appointment by phoning 08 8299997 today.

Estate Planning

Katherine Hann | 15-Mar-2016

Estate planning, how your adviser can help
If you are starting over, either from divorce or death of a partner, it is essential to consider your own Estate Plan.
Ask yourself these questions:
• Have your assets changed-were you or will you be a beneficiary from an estate?
• Do you have life insurance and who receives the benefit?
• Have you received a superannuation split and who is now the beneficiary of your superannuation?
• Do you own other assets jointly with anyone?
• Do you have assets owned by a company or trust?
• Who will look after you if you can’t make decisions for yourself?
Your personal situation has now changed significantly and probably so have the beneficiaries of your assets.
What can you do?
Your adviser already knows your financial situation and can help you put in place a current and successful estate plan.
They will help you, in conjunction with an estate lawyer to work out the following:
• That your will is up to date.
• What assets are governed by a will and what are not?
• Is a testamentary trust appropriate?
• That you have adequate life insurance and current beneficiaries.
• The tax consequences of how your estate is distributed.
• Current death nominations for your superannuation-binding or not?
• Enduring powers of attorney or guardianship-are they appropriate?

It can be quite daunting when you are starting over. There is so much that may be new to you and in reality can be complex. If you don't have a financial adviser, now is an opportune time to take stock of your current situation and plan for your future. For a no obligation appointment, please contact Katherine Hann, a Most Trusted Adviser as rated by her clients.