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Closing The Gap: Gender & Superannuation

Posted on February 19, 2024 by admin

There exists a persistent and concerning gender gap in superannuation. Women often find themselves disadvantaged compared to their male counterparts when building wealth for their golden years. Superannuation plays a crucial role in this narrative, whether via income, career breaks or even Australia’s retirement savings system. Let us explore the factors contributing to the gender gap in superannuation and discuss actionable steps to empower women to bridge this divide and secure their financial futures. Understanding The Gender Gap Income Disparity: One of the primary drivers of the gender gap in superannuation is the income disparity between men and women. Women, on average, earn less than men across various industries and occupations, resulting in lower superannuation contributions throughout their working lives. Career Interruptions: Women are more likely to experience career interruptions due to caregiving responsibilities, including raising children or caring for elderly relatives. These interruptions can lead to periods of reduced income and missed superannuation contributions, further widening the gender gap in retirement savings. Part-Time Employment: Women are disproportionately represented in part-time and casual employment, often with lower wages and reduced access to employer-sponsored superannuation contributions. Longer Life Expectancy: On average, women tend to live longer than men, requiring more significant […]

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How The Small Business CGT Concessions Could Boost Your Super

Posted on January 29, 2024 by admin

As a small business owner gearing up for retirement, selling your business can be a strategic move to give your nest egg that final boost. However, navigating the intricacies of selling a business requires careful consideration, especially when it comes to contributing the sale proceeds to your superannuation fund. Let’s explore these essential considerations and small business concessions that can significantly impact your retirement savings. Remember: always consult with a trusted and licensed adviser before acting. When selling a business or business asset, small business owners have the opportunity to contribute a substantial portion of the sale proceeds to their superannuation fund without breaching the super caps. To make this work effectively, it’s crucial to understand and leverage four small business concessions that can help minimize capital gains tax (CGT) implications. The 15-Year Exemption The 15-year exemption is the most valuable concession, allowing superannuation contributions beyond the usual caps (generally as a non-concessional contribution). However, the contribution must be made on or before the later of: the day you lodge your income tax return for the income year in which the relevant CGT event happened 30 days after you received capital proceeds. If you receive a 15-year exemption amount from […]

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Rightsizing Your Lifestyle: The Art of Property Downsizing

Posted on December 11, 2023 by admin

As retirees embrace a new phase in their lives, the concept of property downsizing is gaining momentum as a strategic and rewarding financial move. Downsizing isn’t just about reducing square footage; it’s a lifestyle choice that can offer a range of benefits for those entering their golden years. The Changing Landscape of Retirement Living Many retirees find themselves sitting on a valuable asset—the family home. The Australian property market has witnessed significant growth over the years, and this presents a unique opportunity for retirees. Downsizing involves selling a larger property, often the family home, and purchasing a smaller, more manageable one. This shift not only streamlines day-to-day living but also releases equity tied up in the existing property. Financial Freedom and Flexibility One of the primary advantages of downsizing for retirees is the financial windfall it can generate. Selling a larger property in a desirable location can lead to a substantial cash injection. This liquidity can be used to fund retirement activities, travel plans, or simply serve as a safety net for unexpected expenses. Downsizing gives retirees the financial freedom to enjoy their retirement years without the burden of maintaining a larger property. Enhanced Lifestyle and Convenience Downsizing often means […]

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5 Superannuation Misconceptions Australians Have…

Posted on November 20, 2023 by admin

Superannuation, often called ‘super,’ is a vital part of Australia’s financial landscape. It’s a retirement savings system intended to provide financial security in your golden years. However, despite its widespread use and importance, there are several common misconceptions about superannuation that many Australians hold. Let’s shed light on some of these misconceptions and clarify how super works. Misconception 1: “I don’t need to worry about my super; the government will take care of me.” One of the most widespread myths is that the government will cover your retirement expenses entirely. While the Age Pension does provide financial support to eligible retirees, it’s typically not enough to maintain the lifestyle you desire in retirement. Relying solely on the Age Pension can lead to financial stress. Superannuation is designed to complement the Age Pension and ensure you have enough savings to enjoy a comfortable retirement. So, it’s essential to take an active role in managing your super and contributing to it regularly. Misconception 2: “I don’t need to think about super until I’m older.” Many Australians believe that super is something they can deal with when they’re closer to retirement age. However, this misconception can cost you dearly. The earlier you start […]

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Transitioning to Retirement Made Simpler

Posted on October 30, 2023 by admin

Not quite ready to take the plunge into full retirement, but ready to make a start? Transitioning into the retirement phase of your life means undergoing the process of slowly relying less on work-related earnings and more on superannuation and investments to cover your lifestyle expenses. The time taken to transition into retirement is up to you;  it may take as little as 6 months or as long as 5 years. However, income may be a source of concern during this transition period – this is why transition to retirement pensions can be of assistance. A transition to retirement (TTR) pension allows you to supplement your income by allowing you to access some of your super once you’ve reached your preservation age. This type of pension is similar to an account-based pension, but has a few extra rules. Not only must you first have reached your superannuation preservation age, for TTR pensions in the pre-retirement phase, the minimum pension payment is 4% up to a maximum 10% of your account balance as at 1 July of each financial year or the value from the date your TTR pension started in that financial year. The minimum payment percentage is pro-rated in […]

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The Age Pension Thresholds Have Changed Since 1 July 2023…

Posted on October 9, 2023 by admin

One of the most common questions from those entering or nearing retirement is, ‘How much money can I have before it affects my pension?’ Our answer is usually derived from the total value of your savings, other assets and any income that might be earned from other sources. However, from 1 July 2023, the thresholds determining how much pension you may be paid have changed due to inflation-related adjustments. This means that many of those who may otherwise have been looking at a part-pensioner status due to being over the threshold may be able to be on a full pension with the adjusted thresholds (depending on their circumstances). Similarly, those who may have been ineligible for a pension due to being over the cut-off point for the assets test should become eligible to start claiming a part pension (and all the concessions that go with it). What Assets Will I Be Tested On?  The assets that you or your partner own that are included in your assets test include the following: Real estate (excluding your family home) The market value of your household contents (such as fridges, appliances, etc). Superannuation balances if you and your partner have reached the Age […]

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What’s All The Fuss About SMSFs?

Posted on September 18, 2023 by admin

A Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF) is a unique and increasingly popular retirement savings vehicle. SMSFs offer individuals and families greater control, flexibility, and investment choices than traditional superannuation funds. In this article, we’ll explore what SMSFs are, how they work, their benefits, and some considerations for those interested in establishing and managing one. What is an SMSF? An SMSF is a type of superannuation fund that allows individuals to manage their own retirement savings. Unlike industry or retail super funds, where investment decisions are made by professional fund managers, an SMSF puts the control firmly in the hands of its members, who are also the trustees of the fund. This level of control is what sets SMSFs apart. How Does an SMSF Work? An SMSF can have a maximum of four members, all of whom must also be trustees or directors of the corporate trustee. As trustees, members are responsible for making investment decisions, complying with legal obligations, and managing the fund’s assets. SMSFs can invest in a wide range of assets, including shares, property, cash, and fixed income. Benefits of an SMSF: Control and Flexibility: SMSF members have complete control over their investment choices and strategies. This allows for […]

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Your Health Has A Place In Estate Planning: What You Should Consider If You Fall Ill

Posted on August 28, 2023 by admin

When estate planning, most people focus on what will happen to their family and their assets after they pass, often neglecting to consider what would happen if they were to become ill or incapacitated. Falling ill can be a very stressful and traumatic time for you and your family, especially if you are the primary financial provider for your household. Taking the time to become prepared and evaluating your financial situation can help you to prove if you are out of work for health reasons. It is essential to ensure you know of every entitlement available should you become sick or incapacitated. Income Protection: Income protection is a form of insurance that pays you a regular cash amount if you are unable to work as a result of a sudden illness, covering up to 75% of your income for a set period of time. You can insure your income through agreed value, where you decide the amount you wish to receive each month, or indemnity, where you prove your income at the time of claim rather than during application. Generally, you can claim part or all of your income protection insurance premiums that are taken outside of your super as […]

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Superannuation-Related Obligations Employers Need To Keep In Mind

Posted on August 7, 2023 by admin

While the hustle and bustle of operating and managing a business can occupy your mind, it’s important not to forget your superannuation obligations to your employees. Those who fail to meet their super obligations risk facing severe and even damaging liabilities, penalties and even potential imprisonment. Are you aware of your obligations? Employees (after entering the workforce) should have a ‘stapled’ super fund that you must pay their super into or the right to nominate a super fund. However, if an employee is not eligible to choose, does not have a fund or fails to notify the employer, the employer must pay their contributions into an employer-nominated or default fund. The employer-nominated or default fund must be a complying fund (meets specific requirements and obligations under super law) and be registered by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) to offer a MySuper product. Some super funds may ask that an employer becomes a ‘participating employer’ before they can pay contributions to them. Participating employers may have to make super payments more frequently, such as monthly instead of quarterly. For example, you need to make sure that you are meeting the super guarantee contributions now for all of your employees, including […]

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What Happens To Superannuation When Bankruptcy Is Declared?

Posted on July 17, 2023 by admin

Have you ever wondered what happens to superannuation when someone claims bankruptcy? Bankruptcy is a legal process that can be commenced when you are declared unable to pay your debts. It is a process that can release you from most debts, provide relief and allow you to make a fresh start. However, bankruptcy is not a process to enter into lightly. There are two ways to enter into bankruptcy. These are: Voluntary Bankruptcy: The Australian Financial Security Authority appoints a trustee when you become bankrupt. This trustee is a person or body who manages your bankruptcy. Sequestration Order: Where you nominate yourself for bankruptcy by submitting a Bankruptcy Form. When you become bankrupt, the Australian Financial Security Authority appoints a trustee. This trustee is a person or body who manages your bankruptcy. The trustee can take any cash or money you have in a bank account at the date of bankruptcy but should leave you with enough for modest living expenses. During your bankruptcy, you can keep the income that you save. However, you may have to make compulsory payments if your after-tax income exceeds a set amount. This amount changes with how many dependants you have. When you are […]

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Closing The Gap: Gender & Superannuation

February 19, 2024

There exists a persistent and concerning gender gap in superannuation.

Women often find themselves disadvantaged compared to their male counterparts when building wealth for their golden years. Superannuation plays a crucial role in this narrative, whether via income, career breaks or even Australia’s retirement savings system.

Let us explore the factors contributing to the gender gap in superannuation and discuss actionable steps to empower women to bridge this divide and secure their financial futures.

Understanding The Gender Gap

Closing The Gap

Closing the gender gap in superannuation is a multifaceted challenge that requires concerted efforts from individuals, employers, governments, and society.

By addressing income disparities, supporting women’s career progression, increasing financial literacy, implementing supportive policies, and fostering equitable partnerships, Australia can empower women to bridge the superannuation gender gap and achieve financial security in retirement.

Together, we can create a future where all women have the opportunity to retire with dignity and independence.