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Top EOFY tips from top AFA advisers

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Top EOFY tips from top AFA advisers

 

SYDNEY: 28 JUNE 2017 – The Association of Financial Advisers (AFA) is urging Australians to check in with a financial adviser to help them make the most of end-of-financial-year (EOFY) opportunities. 


“AFA financial advisers are well-placed to help Australians with their end-of-financial-year planning,” said AFA CEO Phil Kewin.


The AFA has compiled a list of top EOFY tips from some of its leading financial advisers for consumers at various stages of the life cycle, including wealth accumulators, families with kids, pre-retirees and retirees.


For advice that is tailored to your personal circumstances, see a financial adviser. 

Tips for Wealth Accumulators 

 

1.    Deductible expenses

Now is the best time to start planning for the 2017/18 financial year. Due to our increasing tendency to work more from home, most occupations these days have expenses that are deductible. If you don’t know what you can claim, you’re likely missing out on tax deductions. If you don’t know where to start, the ATO has lots of very helpful content on their website and even some examples of things you can claim based on different occupations.  If you don’t have a good personal tax accountant, find one now and ask them to help you understand the things you can be claiming for the new financial year.

 -    Ben Nash, Founder and Financial Adviser, Pivot Wealth


2.    Pre-pay your interest on your investment loans

When you borrow money to make an investment that will generate assessable income, you are generally entitled to claim a tax deduction for the interest on the borrowed money.With interest rates being low at present, it is worth considering pre-paying up to 12-months interest on the loan if you currently have a geared investment portfolio or rental property. Doing so will allow you to lock in the interest rate you pay for next financial year (giving you certainty around the cost of your investment) and will bring forward your tax deduction to this financial year. As a bonus, the banks will often offer you an extra discount on the interest rate for doing this.
-    Ravi Agarwal, Medical Accountant and Wealth Adviser, MEDIQ Financial Services

3.    Check your salary packaging

 Check to see if you can claim for expenses through any salary packaging opportunities with your employer. Also, you may have access to claiming back some household expenses through your employer salary packaging, such as electricity, general insurance premiums or even trauma insurance premiums.  It can help save you money with a little reading on the fine print of your entitlements.  
-    Dianne Charman, Senior Financial Adviser and Managing Director, Jade Financial Group


4.    Make a plan

Set financial goals no matter how big or small, develop routines and have the discipline to live by these.   Once you commence your first steady role or career, take the time, or even get advice, to understand your long-term financial potential, e.g. how much you are projected to have in super at retirement so you can be clear on the financial priorities you need to work on. And don’t think that you are invincible, get some income protection and trauma insurance as soon as you have a full-time job.
-    Michael Nowak, Senior Financial Adviser, Nowak Financial Services and AFA Vice President

5.    Keep insurance top of mind

Don’t forget to investigate a claim with your adviser. Many people suffer injuries or illness such as fractures or even early stage melanomas and don’t think to check their policies. In many cases fractures and early diagnosis are some of the conditions that can lead to a possible claim. So if you have unfortunately been ill, it doesn’t hurt to ask the question, call your adviser and have a chat to today.

-    PJ Byrne, Life Insurance and Income Protection Specialist, Mr Insurance


Tips for families with kids:

1.     Health care claims

Health care costs can creep up, so are you claiming everything you can in this financial year?  Check your receipts and make sure you get your claims in before the window closes.  Most health insurance companies have an online claim service, so no excuses, you can do this anytime.

-    Dianne Charman, Senior Financial Adviser and Managing Director, Jade Financial Group

2.    Free money and help your spouse at the same time

If your spouse is not working or on a low income, you can make a $3,000 after tax contribution to their super fund and receive a $540 tax rebate. Another strategy to help your partner’s super account balance is called Spouse Contribution Splitting whereby up to 85% of your pre-tax contribution (as 15% tax is deducted) from last year can go to your spouse’s account to help balance your account balances.  As important when retired is to have two account balances to take advantage of the retirement tax benefits of superannuation.

-    Marc Bineham, Managing Director Noall and Co and AFA President


3.    Hold on

Initially, many families move to one income so young families need to be aware that maintaining your financial position or even going backwards is not the end of the world. Focus on the family and each other and get sleep! Most people seek advice to up their life insurances to look after their new loved ones in event of the unexpected.
-    Michael Nowak, Senior Financial Adviser, Nowak Financial Services and AFA Vice

 President

Tips for Pre-Retirees 

1.    Maximise your super

Maximise your contributions into superannuation before the end of the financial year.  If you are under 49 years of age, you have up to $30,000 to concessionally contribute; if you’re over 49 you have up to $35,000. This falls from 1 July 2017 to $25,000. The new changes to ‘non-concessional’ contribution limits (i.e. after tax money) apply from 1 July, so if you have surplus funds particularly from large financial events such as the sale of an investment property, then it would be worthwhile seeking advice about making a contribution into your super fund before 30 June this year.

  -    David Reed, Retirement Adviser, The Retirement Advice Centre


2.     Maximise salary sacrifice contributions

The concessional contribution limit drops from $35,000 to $25,000 in the next financial year, so make the most of the higher number this year. If you have a bonus due and can afford it, transfer it to your super. Remember, saving tax and building your retirement nest egg gives you two big ticks – well done.
-    Dianne Charman, Senior Financial Adviser and Managing Director, Jade Financial Group

3.    Now is a great time to have the impact

If you play sport, then these are the championship minutes, that short period where you have the chance to make the impact.At the stage when the kids have left the nest, most people are earning a decent income and it’s critical that they use it wisely.  Two key financial priorities at this time are implementing a plan to finish paying off the mortgage, and also placing the appropriate amount of funds into super to maximise your chances of attaining your retirement goals.
-    Michael Nowak, Senior Financial Adviser, Nowak Financial Services and AFA Vice President

 

 

Tips for Retirees

1.    Scrutinise your costs

What free money did you leave on the table this financial year? Have a look at the health or medical claims you just didn’t get around to and jump online and check out the latest discounts on offer for upcoming holidays and the like.  If you need to do some upgrades or replacements on your stuff (household items, car, etc) check out the end of financial year bargains around now.

 -    Dianne Charman, Senior Financial Adviser and Managing Director, Jade Financial Group

2.     ‘Mind the cap’

On 1 July 2017 superannuation enters a new phase of complexity and pension reporting.For those with super in pension phase, having correct and compliant documentation regarding your pension account(s) is essential. Should you cash in any excess over $1.6m? Should you leave any excess in your accumulation account? For those with a SMSF, should you reset the cost base on all assets? These are just a few of the issues retirees need to address before 30 June.
-    Darren Johns, SMSF Specialist Adviser, Align Financial


Ends

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About the AFA

The Association of Financial Advisers Limited (AFA) has been the authentic voice on the value of financial advice for over 70 years. Today, the AFA is a vibrant, innovative association, where the underlying driver of policy is the belief that great advice transforms lives. To this end the AFA is striving to achieve the vision of Great Advice for More Australians. The AFA’s ongoing relevance as a professional association is derived from our success in engaging with the major stakeholders in financial advice including advisers, consumers, licensees, product and service providers, and the regulator and government. Culturally we believe in the value of collaboration to create powerful outcomes and this drives how we achieve influence and work towards our vision.