Financial and retirement planning

Blogs with the keyword "Financial and retirement planning"

The Government’s stimulus package in response to the Coronavirus

31 Mar 2020

We look at the Government’s economic stimulus package in response to coronavirus, and the measures that may be relevant to you.

Market Insight – Coronavirus

26 Mar 2020

Our Chief Investment Officer, Dan Farmer, looks at the share market impact of the coronavirus and the response to date from policymakers.

The electric car revolution

23 Mar 2020

Vehicles powered by fossil fuels are one of the major contributors to global warming and air pollution. With transportation the third-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Australia1, one way of reducing your carbon footprint, living more sustainably and saving money, could be through the purchase of an electric vehicle (EV).

Investment market review - Quarter-ended 31 December 2019

18 Mar 2020

The Research team provides a performance summary and commentary on each of the five main asset classes.

Insurance and succession planning for small businesses

18 Mar 2020

When you start out in business, your focus is likely to be on growth and managing day-to-day activities. Then, as your business expands, things get more complex. Perhaps you take on more employees, acquire more assets or develop your product and service offering.

67 is the new 65

18 Mar 2020

Over the last 20 years, since 1999, the percentage of Australians age 65 years or over increased from 12.3% to 15.9%. This group is projected to increase more rapidly over the next decade, as more baby boomers (people born between 1946 and 1964) turn 65.1

Sustainable Investment - aligning your investments with your values

18 Mar 2020

The recent devastating bushfires in Australia have driven the climate change conversation further up the political and public agenda. Industry is also responding with Blackrock, the world’s largest fund manager, recently pledging to toughen its stance on climate change by reducing its investment exposure to thermal coal.

News from our CEO

18 Mar 2020

Terry Dillon, CEO provides an update on the challenging start to the new year, the global forces driving market uncertainty and Shadforth becoming a certified fiduciary advice firm.

Coronavirus market update

16 Mar 2020

Our Research Team look at the factors that have driven recent share market volatility, and investigate the historical impacts of epidemics on investment markets.

Giving and leaving a legacy

28 Nov 2019

Traditionally, Christmas and the end of the year is seen as a time of giving to those less fortunate. But why stop giving at Christmas? We look at ways you can give in a meaningful way.

Investment market review - Quarter-ended 30 September 2019

28 Nov 2019

The Research team provides a performance summary and commentary on each of the five main asset classes.

The lay of the land - is property still a viable investment?

28 Nov 2019

In this article we provide an overview of the current state of the Australian property market, outline alternatives to investing in residential property and explain how you can reduce your tax liability and boost your retirement income.

Fitness and finance at your fingertips

28 Nov 2019

In today’s technology-driven world, we’re expected to be available, online, at any time. But with frequent studies telling us technology overuse is bad for our productivity, our sleep, our relationships and even our mental health, is it time to go offline?

Drawing down on your super - rewards and risks

28 Nov 2019

You’ve spent your life accumulating your super and now you’re nearing retirement and the next phase of your life. What are the options for transitioning to retirement and, once you retire completely, how can you avoid the risk of your super running out before you do?

News from our CEO

28 Nov 2019

Message from Terry Dillon – Shadforth CEO.

Why proactive financial planning matters

18 Nov 2019

It’s never too early to start planning for your long-term financial security. Find out why proactive financial planning is key to success.

Are avocados to blame for housing affordability?

14 Oct 2019

Australian Demographer Bernard Salt wrote a tongue in cheek article for The Australian in 2016 about observing “young people who order smashed avocado with crumbled feta on five grain toasted bread at $22 a pop and more”.

Are you still financially focussed?

30 Sep 2019

Are you one of those people who set financial goals at the start of the year, but then forget to refocus during the year? Staying accountable for your financial decisions is one of the most important steps in ensuring your ongoing financial security – yet many of us struggle with it.

Presidential tweets and inverted yield curves

28 Aug 2019

There has been a lot of media attention on inverted yield curves and what they say about an economy. Contrary to belief, it's not always an indicator of a looming recession.

Keeping it in the family

19 Aug 2019

We spend our life planning for what lies ahead, but it’s also important to think about what we leave behind. This article examines why it’s important to involve your loved ones in the discussion.

Advantages and disadvantages of insurance in super

19 Aug 2019

Find out what to consider when selecting your life insurance cover.

Investment market review - quarter ended 30 June 2019

19 Aug 2019

The Research team provides a performance summary and commentary on each of the five main asset classes.

What's new in super and tax this financial year?

19 Aug 2019

The 2019/2020 financial year introduces some new opportunities to save for your retirement through super. We also provide an overview of the ‘protecting your super’ legislation and personal income tax changes.

Toxic tech: is it time to take a break?

19 Aug 2019

In today’s technology-driven world, we’re expected to be available, online, at any time. But with frequent studies telling us technology overuse is bad for our productivity, our sleep, our relationships and even our mental health, is it time to go offline?

A high income but no time for you

05 Aug 2019

​Earning a high income is a great start to financial success, but it's what you do with your money that dictates whether you will ultimately succeed or fail.

Helping your Children Financially: Hints and Tips

15 Jul 2019

Considering helping your children financially? Read Shadforth’s tips for giving and lending money to family members.

New year, new you!

27 Jun 2019

Do you have any resolutions for the new financial year?

Tax & super tips for EOFY 2019

05 Jun 2019

Want to get the most out of your tax return this year? Shadforth shares tax-efficient tips and strategies for EOFY 2019.

Private health insurance rebates

05 Jun 2019

Private health insurance is available for all Australians who wish to cover the costs of being a private patient in hospital.

Investment market review - quarter ended 31 Mar 2019

15 May 2019

The Research Team provides a performance summary and commentary on each of the five main asset classes.

Plus, we illustrate the growth of different investments if you invested one Australian dollar in 2003.

Is it time to go off-grid?

15 May 2019

Once considered a radical way to live, many Australians are now viewing an off-grid lifestyle as both economically and environmentally savvy. We delve into some of the pros and cons and to help you determine whether it’s a good choice for you.

Shedding light on financial exposure

15 May 2019

Financial exposure is the gap between the level of life insurance required to meet your basic needs and the level of insurance you actually have in place in case an unexpected health event occurs. Financial exposure is a growing problem in Australia. This article looks at some of the reasons for this and why it’s important to minimise your financial exposure.

Economic outlook for 2019

15 May 2019

Overall, we are likely to see a slowdown in growth for both the Australian and global economies over the next year. Upcoming elections, including our own Federal election, will have a major influence on the economy as will government spending.

Super dependants

15 May 2019

If you have a superannuation fund, you’ve probably been asked to nominate your beneficiary. But, super fund trustees can only pay your super death benefit to eligible dependants1 or to the legal personal representative of your estate. Here’s what you and your family need to know.

2019 Federal Budget announcement

03 Apr 2019

Find out how the Federal Budget proposals could affect you.

Investment market review - quarter ended 31 December 2018

21 Mar 2019

The Research Team provides a performance summary and commentary on each of the five main asset classes.

Safeguarding the bank of Mum and Dad

07 Dec 2018

The ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’ now helps the majority of first home buyers get onto the property ladder. It’s an act of generosity that can come at a price if it’s not done in the right way.

Estate planning for overseas assets

07 Dec 2018

With one in four Australians born overseas and almost half of us with a parent born overseas1, it’s not uncommon for Australians to have a home or assets outside of Australia.

Ageing and aged care in Australia

07 Dec 2018

The number of people aged 65 and over in Australia is projected to more than double, to 8.8 million over the next 40 years.

What I wish I'd known

29 Aug 2018

It can feel like an uphill battle to stay ahead of the game financially.

Leadership - on and off the field

28 Aug 2018

The buzz you get when 95,000 people are screaming your name at the MCG is tough to beat.

What's new for the 2018/19 financial year?

28 Aug 2018

The start of the new financial year brings a number of changes and some new opportunities.

The power of an attorney

28 Aug 2018

A power of attorney is a legal document that allows you to nominate someone you trust to make financial decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

Investment market review

28 Aug 2018

A review of the quarter ended 30 June 2018.

Investment market review

24 May 2018

A review of the quarter ended 31 March 2018.

Tax-effective strategies

24 May 2018

With 30 June fast approaching, now’s the time to put in place the strategies that could save you paying more tax than you need to this financial year. And, look at the most appropriate tax strategies for the 2019 financial year.

Time to set sail

24 May 2018

No longer the sole domain of retirees, cruises offer travellers the chance to add yoga classes, Michelin-starred menus and exotic explorations to their itinerary.

Market outlook for the new financial year

24 May 2018

The global economy looks strong for the next year but different risk factors may  affect consumer and business confidence.

Federal Budget 2018/19

09 May 2018

This year’s Federal Budget is an ‘election budget’ with tax cuts for all Australians that will be funded by the Government’s higher than expected revenue. All-in-all, changes to super were fairly limited in the Budget, with the Government focused on preventing the erosion of super funds with small balances.

Beat the health insurance price hike!

22 Mar 2018

On 1 April each year, health insurance premiums increase and this year is no different with an average increase of 3.95%* announced.  At the same time, the tax rebate for health fund premiums is decreasing.

News from Shadforth

20 Feb 2018

Recently we sponsored the AFL Fremantle Dockers Past Player History and Honour boards.

Unique Australian adventures await

20 Feb 2018

​The year 2018 is well underway, bringing with it a renewed sense of adventure. So where will your holidays take you this year? Europe? South America? Or why not explore somewhere closer to home?

The surplus cash flow trap

20 Feb 2018

It’s great knowing that when a bill comes in, you’ve got the surplus cash flow to cover it. But how can you make your money go further?

Rise of the grown-up gap year

20 Feb 2018

The festive season has come and gone and the new year brings with it a renewed sense of hope and determination to achieve your goals. You potentially greeted 2018 with a few hopes and resolutions.

Super opportunity for first home buyers and downsizers

20 Feb 2018

Whether you’re buying your first home or you’re ready to downsize, you may be able to use your super to help make the most of your money. These two new schemes support the Government’s goal of reducing pressure on housing affordability in Australia.

Super opportunity for downsizers

20 Feb 2018

If you’re ready to downsize you may be able to use your super to help make the most of your money. This new scheme supports the Government’s goal of reducing pressure on housing affordability in Australia.

A caravan to call home

13 Nov 2017

From the aqua blue waters of the Great Barrier Reef to the breathtaking burnt red of our rich, dusty centre, caravanning is a great way to explore Australia.

Self-service super contributions

13 Nov 2017

The 1 July 2017 super reforms have opened up a fantastic new opportunity to build wealth in super and reduce your tax bill at the same time.

Secure your children’s future education

13 Nov 2017

Giving a child a good education is one of the best things you can do as a parent or grandparent. But what if you weren’t around to help make it happen?

Ethical investing — is it right for you?

13 Nov 2017

What is ethical investing and why would you get involved?

Fuel for the soul

13 Nov 2017

Want to know the secret to happiness?

All I want for Christmas… is to survive it debt free

01 Nov 2017

Follow these tips and emerge in the New Year without the financial hangover.

Fitness for the 21st Century

28 Aug 2017

There’s no doubt that your financial wellbeing is important to ensure you have a comfortable retirement. But, to make the most of it, it’s just as important to have a healthy mind and body.

A super opportunity for you this year

28 Aug 2017

​Following the recent Federal Budget announcement, the Government has now passed law to give effect to changes to Centrelink's asset tests. From 1 January 2017 onwards, there will be changes to the assets test for the age pension and this means there will be some winners and some losers.

Focus on the United States

28 Aug 2017

The US economy continues to improve with both inflation and the labour market having strengthened over the past year.

Give a little love

28 Aug 2017

Australia’s philanthropists are giving more than ever. So what motivates an individual to donate to charity, and how has our nation’s culture evolved as a result?

When’s the right time to get advice?

18 Jul 2017

The answer may not be what you think.

What happens to your super if you die? An easy step now to save your family some grief

04 Jul 2017

The importance of nominating beneficiaries of your super account.

How to prevent a cyber-attack

19 May 2017

Cyber-attacks are entirely preventable.

Quality over quantity

12 May 2017

The clothes we wear, the furniture we sit on and the items we use throughout our lives take their toll on our savings and overall wealth.

Home care — greater choice

12 May 2017

Since February 2017, some welcome changes have been made to the home care system.


09 May 2017

A few handy hints around developing #clevercredit habits.

Big changes are coming to super

21 Feb 2017

With a raft of super changes coming into effect 1 July 2017, now is the time to start thinking about how these changes might affect your retirement plans.

Window of opportunity

21 Feb 2017

On 1 July 2017 significant changes are coming to superannuation. While the changes are wide-ranging, most relate to the super contributions cap.

Double your money – limited time only!

07 Feb 2017

With higher return opportunities comes risk.

Looking at the year ahead

21 Dec 2016

Before we look at 2017, let’s look at the year that has just passed for some background.

Donald Trump(s) Clinton

10 Nov 2016

Pollsters were unable to redeem themselves from their Brexit failings with another incorrect prediction. Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the race for the US Presidency.

SWOT analysis and the family business

12 Sep 2016

What is SWOT analysis, and how it can be used to define objectives and achieve success.

Easy ways to improve your home

25 Aug 2016

You don’t need millions to give a house a new lease on life – little things can make a big difference.

Intelligent and sustainable - how does your home compare?

25 Aug 2016

Environmental sustainability and comfort are not mutually exclusive. Today, there are a number of ways you can reduce your utility bills, boost your comfort and live more sustainably.

Who gets your super if you die?

25 Aug 2016

It’s something we don’t really like to talk about, but have you thought about who gets your super if you die? Super is different from other assets because the trustee of your super fund has control over who gets your super and any risk insurance payout - it doesn’t automatically flow to your estate.

Federal Budget update 2016/17

04 May 2016

This was not your typical Budget. Instead, the Treasurer, Scott Morrison, attempted to build an election platform for the Government and overall, this Budget is quite fair to most people.


07 Mar 2016

The three l’s – legislation, liquidity and leverage

Is it really all China's fault

22 Feb 2016

The Australian market got off to a rocky start in 2016 and much of the blame was placed on China.

The inside line

22 Feb 2016

If there’s one person you can trust to recommend a good place to eat, it’s a chef. So where do our homegrown foodies feast when they have finished feeding us?

Going overseas? Don't forget to tell Centrelink

22 Feb 2016

Choosing to give money to charities that you care about can be straightforward but there are several things to consider.

Choosing a wine like a professional

22 Feb 2016

Top tips to stand you in good stead when you next go to a restaurant or are buying wine in a bottle shop.

Markets meet tough challenges

22 Feb 2016

Geopolitical issues dominated global news headlines as the year drew to a close, overshadowing macro and micro fundamentals.

What Star Wars teaches us financially

23 Nov 2015

Watching as an adult, there are fantastic life lessons and moral values in these movies. There are even terrific financial lessons in the messages.

Holidays of a lifetime

20 Nov 2015

To give you some inspiration we took a look around the world at some of the more unusual destinations on offer.

Aged care — make the right retirement living choice

20 Nov 2015

Many of us save and plan for retirement, with our main focus on ensuring we have enough money to live the type of lifestyle that we want.

The art of achieving what is important to you

16 Oct 2015

Recently I attended the Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes exhibition at the NSW Art Gallery. Not only did I enjoy viewing the exhibitions, but I also enjoyed reading the descriptions next to each painting. I am a 'mindset' type of person.

A story about the importance of insurance

22 Sep 2015

If you are like most Australians, insurance is one of those things which can be put off for another day. But another day might be one too late – the story of Patty outlines how important it is to have the right insurance.

Bubbling house prices – where to from here?

22 Sep 2015

Reports of record-breaking sale prices, high auction clearance rates and Glenn Stevens, governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), talking of 'crazy' house prices has greatly inflated the housing bubble debate.

Did you know… lower tax for small business?

22 Sep 2015

Following the Federal Budget announcement, the Government has now passed law to change the tax rate for small businesses structured as a company. The new tax rate is effective from 1 July 2015.

Choosing your executor

22 Sep 2015

An important part of making a Will is deciding who should act as the executor of your estate. An executor acts as your representative and will make sure that your wishes, as detailed in your Will, are followed.

The China syndrome

22 Sep 2015

The recent severe volatility in China's share markets has raised questions about the causes of the fall and about the wider implications for the global economy and markets generally.

Age pension changes – what does it mean for you?

22 Sep 2015

​Following the recent Federal Budget announcement, the Government has now passed law to give effect to changes to Centrelink's asset tests. From 1 January 2017 onwards, there will be changes to the assets test for the age pension and this means there will be some winners and some losers.

Financial goal setting and answerability

18 Sep 2015

Why not set your next financial goals while things are good?

Mental toughness for investors

28 Aug 2015

The investment markets have had a pretty good run over the last few years. A lot of people have forgotten about the events of 2008 ('what Global Financial Crisis?'). However, a little bit of nervousness has entered peoples' minds with fears around Greece and China.

China’s devaluation of the renminbi

27 Aug 2015

On 11 August 2015, the People's Bank of China (PBOC) surprised the market by devaluing the renminbi (RMB) against the U.S. dollar by 1.9 per cent. The devaluation was the biggest one-day move in two decades. Subsequent moves have seen the cumulative devaluation reach 4.4 per cent at the time of writing.

Why your financial adviser cares about you

10 Aug 2015

The main thing I enjoy about being a financial adviser at Shadforth Financial Group is the sense of community among our client base and our staff. It really is one big family, where everybody enjoys each other's successes and commiserates in others' struggles. It is fun to be around.

How to stay ahead with Pareto on your side

04 Jul 2015

Vilfredo Pareto's vegetable garden was fertile. So fertile that it threw up a theory that has held for more than a century and across many walks of life.

Hybrid securities – How do the conversion conditions impact risk?

01 Jul 2015

With the recent fall in interest rates offered on term deposits, investors are looking for alternative investments to boost their income. Hybrid securities are an increasingly popular method of achieving fixed interest exposure, however it is important that investors understand the key terms before investing.

Did you know... that 56 is the new 55?

25 Jun 2015

The preservation age is changing. Once you reach your preservation age, and permanently retire from the workforce, you can access your superannuation.

The gift of giving - charitable foundations

24 Jun 2015

Australians are known for their generous spirit of giving. In 2012-13, Australians donated approximately $4 billion1 to charity, and an increasing number of Australians are creating long-term giving structures.

Challenge of change - the 2015 Intergenerational Report

24 Jun 2015

In early March this year, the Treasurer released the Intergenerational Report (IGR). Every five years, the IGR provides a snapshot analysis of how Australia is tracking now and how it will be in 40 years' time. The IGR is important to the Government's policy agenda because it provides the evidential basis for reform.

Federal Budget 2015/16: General concessions for small business

24 Jun 2015

The 2015/16 Budget has introduced a number of generous concessions for small businesses, with tax relief being the single most significant business benefit item in this Budget. The specific concessions relevant to each business category are discussed.

The new revolution

24 Jun 2015

Life doesn't get better by chance– it gets better by change. We are living through a new economic revolution. The first revolution occurred in the Middle East about 12,000 years ago, after the last Ice Age, and it gave us farming.

Financial Zen in everyday life

12 Jun 2015

Financial planning is more than just picking some good investments (although, I concede this is fun). The real essence of financial planning is to achieve all of the things that are important to you.

The inheritance problem

06 Jun 2015

At some stage during our lives almost all of us will receive an inheritance of some sort. For the lucky ones it will be substantial and life changing. For others it may be a small item of sentimental value.

Want your own personal concierge?

31 May 2015

You might not know it, but if you have a platinum credit card, you probably already have one!

How to make $1 million and have nothing left

06 May 2015

How would it feel to earn $1 million a year? Sounds like a nice position to be in.

Over the horizon: The impact of the pending wave of medical graduates

15 Apr 2015

Australia is currently experiencing a significant increase in the number of medical graduates. This increase is already placing pressure on the availability of intern training positions and will flow through to increased pressure on post-graduate training and entry into specialist medical colleges.

Preparing your mind for retirement

19 Mar 2015

Bruce and Marianne had planned for their retirement about five years before Bruce was ready to leave his job as a school principal. Many of their friends were either retired or facing retirement and provided the couple with good examples of both what to do and not do when it came to making the transition from a regular work life.

Planning for your beneficiaries

19 Mar 2015

Have you nominated your children as beneficiaries to your super fund account? If so, you may have inadvertently exposed their super inheritance to future legal proceedings.

Fringe benefits tax rate changes - are salary sacrifice arrangements still tax effective?

19 Mar 2015

Fringe benefits tax (FBT) year end is just around the corner and with that starting on 1 April 2015 the FBT rate increases from 47% to 49%.

Planning for retirement as a business owner

19 Mar 2015

As a small business owner it is important to have a retirement plan in place well before deciding to retire. This is because, in most cases, your major asset is your business. Planning ahead will ensure you have sufficient funds to maintain your lifestyle in retirement.

Low return or a negative return - what's your pick?

13 Feb 2015

Recently the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut interest rates to a historic low of 2.25%. This is great news for those who have mortgages, loans or other debt as interest charges are further reduced.

In search of the silver bullet

10 Feb 2015

One thing I find really intriguing is the concept that there are products available that can instantaneously provide us with gratification - "the things we want". What I find even more fascinating is that people actually believe these "silver bullets" exist.

You can't always get what you want...

10 Feb 2015

You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometime you might find you get what you need.

Pass or fail? Your financial health check

30 Jan 2015

​When was the last time you reviewed your financial position and asked yourself whether the plans you have in place are still appropriate given your current circumstances, or is there more you could be doing to get you where you want to be?

Faster or Smarter - what's your choice

30 Jan 2015

If you're anything like me you probably find that there are just not enough hours in the day to get everything done. You may find yourself getting up earlier, staying up later or burning the candle at both ends in a vain attempt to complete your "to do" list.

Three mistakes we make with debt

19 Dec 2014

In my previous article 'Time poor and too busy to save' we looked at the key challenges facing young people when it comes to shaping their financial future.  In this article I take a deeper look at one of today's major issues - debt.

Fake savings with Mobile Apps

17 Dec 2014

As a Shadforth financial adviser, one of the most common questions I am asked is how to manage small savings amounts for young children. Over the years, a number of banks have launched products aimed at this market, but all have suffered from problems like miserly interest rates, account keeping fees, and inconvenient access.

Retirement - How much is enough?

12 Dec 2014

One of the first questions people ask when discussing their retirement is "How much do I need to save to retire comfortably?" It's a good question; naturally, you want to be confident that your money will last as long as possible and allow you to maintain your chosen lifestyle.

Keeping up with regulatory change

12 Dec 2014

More than six months has now passed since the May Federal Budget. The Coalition Government's budget reforms are moving slowly ahead, albeit with a number of compromises and modifications.

What are you actually worried about?

28 Nov 2014

Everyone worries about money from time to time and while everyone's worries are different, there are usually some common themes. Do I have enough money? How can I get more? What factors might affect my investments? How can I protect my assets? Am I making the right financial decisions?

How time travel can improve your finances and your life

28 Nov 2014

Often the media would have us believe that investment success relies on us picking the right investment or backing the right fund manager. They describe investing as if it were roulette. Place your bets and see how you go.

Protecting your greatest asset

28 Nov 2014

If you're like many Australians, you've put off obtaining personal insurance, thinking that life changing accidents or illnesses always happen to someone else. With all of the day-to-day expenses you and your family have to pay, it can be hard to justify adding another cost on a just-in-case basis.

Time poor and too busy to save

21 Nov 2014

​Increasingly today's young people are so busy juggling their work, lifestyle and family lives that they often neglect to take the time to consider making the key financial decisions that will help to shape their financial future.

Christmas is coming – a time to reflect

21 Nov 2014

With the Christmas season fast approaching, most of us will be looking forward to spending quality time with our family, friends and loved ones. Throughout the year we often get caught up in our busy lives and can require occasions such as Christmas to bring everyone together.

Financial advice – just who can you trust?

24 Oct 2014

What does financial advice mean to you? Is it the flexibility to retire when you want? The opportunity to buy your dream house? Being able to put your kids through private school?

For better or worse – what will you get from your account-based pension?

17 Oct 2014

Consider the following questions: Would you retain your current Account-Based Pension for the rest of your life?

SMSFs – The Devil is in the detail

23 Sep 2014

​It is essential that anyone considering setting up or joining a Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF) has the information they need to make the right decision. If you want to establish your own 'Do-It-Yourself' super fund, there are many factors you need to think about.

Acting ahead of Account-Based Pension changes

19 Sep 2014

In previous editions of 'The Edge' we have looked at key Federal Government reforms impacting on the superannuation environment. One of these areas has been the changes to the 'Deeming of Account-Based Pensions' which will take effect from 1 January 2015.

A smarter way to buy your next car

27 Aug 2014

When it comes time to buy a new car, most of us don't enjoy the process of dealing with the salesperson at the car yard. A recent Gallup Poll rated car salespeople third lowest in a list of professions ranked by 'honesty and ethics' (disappointingly still ranking higher than politicians).

Young families and the value of financial advice

07 Aug 2014

For young families, investing and planning for the future often revolves around one day being able to buy an investment property, perhaps having their own business, or saving for their children's education.

Business Insurance - Who Needs It?

15 Jul 2014

Like many of us, small business owners can tend to avoid facing up to their own mortality and dealing with some of the risks inherent in life.

Downsizing - What's best for you?

15 Jul 2014

Downsizing a home can free up capital and enhance your lifestyle in retirement. However, if the right measures aren't taken it can actually ruin those golden years. Below are some considerations that can help you determine whether downsizing your home is right for you, and a few tips on how to go about it.

Keeping your eyes on the prize

04 Jul 2014

The end of one financial year and the start of the next is usually a great time to stop and think about new opportunities which may be available to enhance your overall financial well being. Most of us will have been impacted in one way or another by the changes announced in the May Federal Budget.

Fringe Benefits Tax - the opportunities for high income earners

04 Jul 2014

As part of the recent Budget measures announced by the Federal Government, the Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) rate will increase from 47% to 49% from 1 April 2015 until 31 March 2017, that is, for the 2016 and 2017 FBT years.

Financial Literacy for Academics

20 Jun 2014

As an academic, you have devoted your life to teaching the next generation, preparing them to take on the world with confidence and success, or you've dedicated your time to the next innovation to help better the lives of people around the world.

Spotting the wolves

30 May 2014

Do you know how to spot the difference between good and bad financial advice?

Investment returns – does tax really matter?

22 May 2014

​You bet it does. You see, we have a habit of spending our money in after-tax dollars. So if we are relying on our investments to fund our lifestyle in retirement those investments will need to work harder if our return is being eroded away by excessive amounts of income or capital gains tax along the way.

Qld Health Contracts – cautiously moving ahead

20 May 2014

The last couple of months have seen a significant escalation in tension between doctors and Qld Health over the terms of the proposed contracts for SMO and VMO practitioners.

Managing your finances during illness and hardships

16 May 2014

A family member of mine recently underwent a tough battle with an aggressive leukaemia. As many have experienced, the constant hospital stays, doctor visits and general care required by such an illness can turn a family upside down.

Super is on the up, are you taking advantage?

12 May 2014

With many recent changes to superannuation, it is important to be informed about how the new legislation will affect you and your family.

Is a Self Managed Super Fund right for me?

10 Apr 2014

There's no doubt that Self Managed Super Funds (SMSF) have received a lot of attention in the press over the past few years.

Deeming of Account Based Pensions

25 Mar 2014

​Recently the Federal Government introduced legislation that would result in Account Based Pensions being subject to 'deeming' from 1 January 2015. This legislation has now passed Parliament.

Financial Astrology … it’s all in the stars

18 Mar 2014

"The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable" – John Kenneth Galbraith

Outcome on key reform proposals

07 Mar 2014

Previously we detailed some important proposed superannuation reforms. At the time of writing, the outcomes of these proposals were still pending. The Federal Government has now made the following decisions in relation to each of these reforms...

Longevity and you

07 Mar 2014

​There is no doubt about it, we are all living longer. Like most things in life, increased longevity brings with it opportunities and challenges – in this case for us as individuals and collectively as a modern society.

The state of play with Queensland Health Contracts

14 Feb 2014

2013 was a year of great uncertainty for doctors working within the Public Health system. After the publication of the 'Blueprint for better healthcare in Queensland' and the later release of the Auditor-General's report into the private practice billings in Queensland Health, there has been a storm brewing over how Queensland Health engages with the 3,500 SMO and 750 VMO practitioners.

What do cricket and your personal finances have in common?

07 Feb 2014

Here's a new way to think about your finances – it's just like cricket. I'm thinking of Adam Gilchrist and Geoff Boycott.

Who is part of your team?

29 Jan 2014

I enjoyed a moment of reflection recently after completing a half marathon (fun) run. By the way, I wonder why they call it a 'fun' run? It really wasn't that pleasurable at all! But it got me thinking. I achieved my goal, I was proud and all I wanted to do was thank my 'team'.

Insurance – has it really got you covered?

22 Jan 2014

The direct insurance industry – it all seems so simple doesn't it. You pick up the phone, provide a few basic details, no medicals are needed and voila, you have life insurance. It seems nothing could be easier.

Money’s cheap – but how do you make the most of it?

06 Dec 2013

There is speculation that interest rates in Australia have hit rock bottom. As economic experts debate whether the Reserve Bank has one more shot in the locker (or not), the overnight cash rate sits at 2.50% (as at 6 November 2013), the lowest rate since 1959.

Protect yourself while helping your adult children

06 Dec 2013

As parents much of our time, energy and money is directed towards ensuring our children have the best possible start in life, as well as providing them with the means to become productive members of society.

Women and the retirement challenge

02 Dec 2013

How often do you stop and think about your future financial needs?

The pitfalls of moving overseas with a Self Managed Super Fund

10 Nov 2013

If you have a Self Managed Super Fund (SMSF) then like many trustees the chances are you are probably unaware of a rule which requires what is known as the central management and control of your SMSF to be conducted within Australia.

Anti-detriment payments: How your family can claim back your superannuation taxes

10 Oct 2013

​I hate talking about morbid subjects such as death, however, having recently helped a client's family, I want to discuss a little known strategy called 'anti-detriment payments'. This strategy can help your family and increase the value of your estate.

Are you the ‘perfect player’ in your industry?

24 Sep 2013

Whether talking about sport or industry, the qualities that make a perfect player or employee (whatever level you are at, from beginner to CEO) are the same.

Part 3: Which is better for financial freedom - buying a home or renting and investing?

16 Sep 2013

​I have a 'friend' who was very, very lucky that his mother was willing to assist him in getting a financial headstart (thanks, Mum). My friend was also very lucky that the father of his girlfriend at the time was also very helpful with financial advice (thanks, Charlie).

Part 2: Which is better for financial freedom -buying a home or renting and investing?

12 Sep 2013

​In my previous blog, I suggested that renting and investing could be a better financial option than buying a home outright.

How to grow your wealth if you forgot to marry well – one for the ladies

11 Sep 2013

Are you still waiting for Mr Right to come along and make you financially secure?

Part 1: Which is better for financial freedom -buying a home or renting and investing?

02 Sep 2013

​It used to be the 'Great Australian Dream'.... finish school, build a career, meet the love of your life, buy a home and start a family.

What is the best investment?

15 Jul 2013

As a Private Client Adviser, one of the issues I often get asked is, 'what is the best investment?'. Typically people are accustomed to considering various options such as cash, term deposits, bonds, property, shares and the like (a few may like to consider the hottest tip in an upcoming race at Flemington on Saturday an investment, but that is never going to be a sound strategy for wealth creation!).

Five tips to combining finances with your partner

10 Jul 2013

​In past generations, there weren't usually questions around combining finances as it was something that was simply done once you got married. These days things are a little different and perhaps more complicated, particularly for couples that get married when they are older and more likely to be financially well-established.

Protecting your loved ones

02 Jul 2013

Getting married brings a whole new dimension to our planning objectives. Starting a family is also a time when protecting your loved ones takes on increased importance.

Take the free kicks!

28 Jun 2013

You don't know what you don't know. There are many simple financial planning strategies available to many people.

Prioritise and regain control

26 Jun 2013

Most people do not like having to work to a budget. A budget often seems to be a negative – focussing us on what we can't have rather than what we can. The answer to successful budgeting lies in the way we think.

Have you checked the health of your SMSF lately?

20 Jun 2013

With the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) still fresh in investors' minds, I often get asked, "how do you know the stock market will continue to go up?"

Is your budget in surplus or deficit?

18 Jun 2013

Over the last year there has been lots of talk about the federal budget. With headlines such as 'Budget needs tough choices' and 'Surplus? You already spent it' – there is no denying that achieving a budget surplus is a very important issue.

Stress test your mortgage in advance

17 Jun 2013

As a financial adviser, all too often I meet clients who have overextended themselves when purchasing a property, usually their own home.

The forgotten costs of investment properties

14 Jun 2013

​There are many misconceptions around the real rate of return on investment properties. This is often due to the forgotten costs associated with them.

Falling in love – happily ever after

05 Jun 2013

You were happily single before falling for a new person in your life. A genuine love interest.

Downsizing - Can it be done?

23 May 2013

A number of my retiree clients ponder the issue of downsizing. Most tend to wax and wane but a few end up taking the plunge to move to something smaller.

Neither a borrower nor a lender be!

21 May 2013

Wise words from William Shakespeare's Hamlet, but maybe we need to update it for the 21st century - "be not a borrower".

Four money lessons to teach your spending teenager

20 May 2013

I was quite fortunate when I was growing up to have a father who taught me about the value of money. I would never admit to taking all of his advice on board, because as a teenager at the time I knew everything...

Are you thinking of helping your children buy property?

16 May 2013

With ever increasing property prices in Sydney, a question I am hearing more and more often from my clients is "how can I help my children buy property?".

Coping with the 24 hour news cycle

07 May 2013

Billions wiped off the market in trade this morning! Greece heading for disaster has Eurozone on the brink! Soaring Aussie dollar signals the death knell of the mining boom!

What to look for in a financial adviser

07 May 2013

I am pleased the financial planning industry is undergoing some welcome and much needed change.

A little secret

01 May 2013

I'll let you in on a little secret - I don't know when the market will turn.

Don't bite the hand that feeds us

30 Apr 2013

There is a budget and an election campaign coming up. It would serve us well to remember where the money being dished out comes from. There was an article in the Chicago Tribune a number of years ago that is still true today. Our legislators and the voting public often lose sight of where government revenue comes from.

Urgent – In Strictest Confidence

24 Apr 2013

We have all had them - those letters from Nigeria where the poor writer of the letter is desperately trying to get millions out of the country and needs our help. All you need to do is hand over your bank account and contact details and in return you will get 20% of $50 million for your help!

Part 3: Testing your strategies to ensure you reach your goals

12 Apr 2013

You have probably noticed that in my last two blogs, I have not mentioned financial structures (such as family trusts, companies, self managed superannuation funds.) Nor have I mentioned financial strategies (such as superannuation contributions, loan repayments, insurances, estate planning) or specific investments!

Part 2: Building the decision-making framework for your investment strategy

11 Apr 2013

In my first blog I discussed the questions you need to ask yourself to determine your goals. In my second blog I'll focus on how, in conjunction with your financial adviser, you can build a decision-making framework to achieve them.

Do you let your investments limit your goals, or make your goals dictate your investment strategy?

10 Apr 2013

In my role as a Private Client Adviser I see and hear a lot of misunderstandings about the financial planning process. This ranges from the BBQ conversation about the "killing" somebody made on an investment, to the media suggesting their readers go in a certain direction, even though they are writing for the broad masses.

Top 10 tips to take control of your lazy money

21 Mar 2013

So you've gone to the trouble of preparing your family budget – congratulations, you are now part of the 10% of all Australian families who actually have one!! What comes next?

The (not so) secret golden rule of financial planning

20 Mar 2013

At risk of being shunned by my financial planning colleagues, I am about to reveal to you our magic trick…financial success will come from one fundamental rule – spend less than you earn.

$21bn wipe out - please explain?

13 Mar 2013

"Chinese jitters prompt $21b wipe-out" Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) 5th March 2013

Part 3: How to be a savvy saver

09 Mar 2013

In the last of my blog series on bill paying, here are some tips on how you can be savvier in the way you approach money management.

Part 2: How to get on top of your repayments?

08 Mar 2013

In the second part of my blog series on bill paying I discuss how you can get on top of your repayments.

Part 1: Pay your bills on time

06 Mar 2013

One of the most common issues I come across with my clients is the issue of bills and cash flow. That is, simply having enough money to pay them and paying them on time.

Your superannuation asset allocation

11 Feb 2013

The asset allocation of a portfolio simply refers to where and how much you have invested in each asset class (for example cash, fixed interest, property, Australian shares and international investments).

Two mistakes to avoid before you retire

07 Feb 2013

How far off is your retirement? If you have five, ten or even better 20 years to go, you can avoid the first mistake – which is not planning early enough.

Is cash really king?

04 Feb 2013

We often hear the phrase "cash is king". This phrase will have different meanings to each of us – particularly small business owners, someone saving for a home deposit, investors and self-funded retirees. However, I actually believe "cash flow is king"!!

Bringing it all together

23 Jan 2013

Wouldn't it be great to ensure that your legal, taxation and financial affairs are all in sync? Wouldn't it be even better if you didn't have to do the organising to make this happen?

Funding your children's education?

15 Nov 2012

In the event that you elect to send your children to a private school, this can be a costly exercise and although the tuition fees vary, you can expect to pay anywhere from $12,000pa to $30,000pa for a year 12 or university student.

How much do I need to start a SMSF?

09 Oct 2012

It depends. The first question you need to ask yourself is why do I want to start a SMSF?

Are you working your plan...

03 Oct 2012

You're smart, you're paid well, and you're good at what you do. But you have no idea where all your money goes. Sound familiar?

A tax deduction won't make you wealthy

25 Sep 2012

Despite what many people will tell you, claiming a "tax deduction" in itself won't make you wealthy.

Are you your own worst enemy?

29 Aug 2012

Are you an impetuous and impulsive investor? Do you take solace in the knowledge that if you make a wrong decision you can always change it later?

Life Changing Moments

17 Apr 2012

Life changing moments seem to be key factor in the decision to donate money to charity, according to new research by the Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies at the Queensland University of Technology.

The impact of irrational decisions on investment performance

01 Jan 1970