Many Australians dream of a comfortable retirement. It may include living near the beach, spending your days fishing or playing golf, or simply spending time with friends and family. Many Australians also like to help their children and grandchildren financially to ensure they have the best chance of a great future.
But can you afford to achieve all of this?
In 2009 the aged pension was increased to provide a fortnightly payment of $671 for a single pensioner and $506 each for a couple.
Could you enjoy a comfortable retirement on $335 per week?
For some people the answer may be yes, but you better have the mortgage paid off by then, and you can forget about upgrading your car or enjoying overseas holidays. Helping your children and grandchildren financially would simply not be possible.
It is also well known that relying on the 9% super contributions made by your employer will not be enough over your working life to fund a comfortable retirement.
So what can you do to give your retirement plans a boost?
There are three simple steps to get started with. First you need to make sure you're not paying higher fees than necessary, as this can have a huge impact on your super balance over time. Next you need to ensure you're in a well performing fund that suits your tolerance to investment risk, and thirdly you should consider contributing additional funds to your super via tax-effective strategies such as salary sacrifice.
Once you've covered the first three steps, with the help and guidance of your financial adviser, you can move into more complex strategies to assist with your retirement planning. One example is the use of a 'transition to retirement' strategy. This strategy is only available to those aged 55 and over, but is a great example of using tax effective strategies to boost your super.
If you'd like to find out more please contact your financial adviser.