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Planning for a Happy Retirement

The key to a happy retirement is positioning and planning for retirement early and ensuring that during your working life you have saved sufficient to live the lifestyle that you desire in retirement.

Planning is necessary because a pension or at least the full pension may not be available to you. The government puts strict limits on who can receive a pension and how much they receive. These limits are based on the income you earn and the value of assets you own and as such the access to a financial planner during your work life will assist you in understanding the financial position you will be in in retirement. .



Assets and Income

Assets include savings, superannuation funds, investments such as shares and bonds, property, plus any businesses you own.

Income on the other hand includes any money received from any employment, your income producing assets and any pensions.

 

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The first step in planning for a financially secure retirement is to determine what assets and income you will have available after you stop working. Assets include savings, super funds, investments such as shares and bonds, property, plus any businesses you own.

Income on the other hand includes money received from assets and pensions.

The Department of Human Services website will have a lot of valuable information for you including details of the Income Test and Asset Test for Pensions.

This will assist you in assessing what you will earn if anything from the Age Pension in retirement after considering your own income and assets held value.



Transferring Assets

Many people will discover that they do not qualify for the pension because of the value of their assets, which may include residential properties usually other than your own home if you own a home, savings, investments, equities and any business or businesses. This may lead to financial stress if you are indeed asset rich and cash poor as the asset value will reduce the allowable pension but the assets may not produce sufficient income to live on.

In these cases it is strongly recommended for you to see a financial planner who may recommend some specific strategies to reduce the assets eg transferring some assets such as a holiday home, house, business or rental property to children or grandchildren. Money and investments like shares or bonds can also be gifted to family members.

Caution with such as there are limits as to the value of gifting in any one year without impacting a pension and there also may be Capital Gains Tax consequences arising from such gifting at that time and into the future.This is a good reason why you should seek professional help through your financial planner and or your lawyer.

You should always consult with a professional planner before transferring money or setting up a retirement plan.



How a Financial Planner Can Help

To help you prepare for retirement, Holiday Coast recommends the professional team at Bridges Financial Services. Bridges can help you with retirement planning, estate planning, superannuation and even planning for aged care.

Bridges can help you plan your estate so your children will avoid paying too much Capital Gains Tax. They can also show you whether it is better to bequeath property through a will, sell it or transfer it. Your lawyer will also be key to this advice and planning.

 

This article provides general information only and should not be relied upon as financial product advice.

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