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BSB 806 015

Plan for retirement

Step 1: Think about the retirement lifestyle you want

What do you want your retirement to look like? Do you plan to go travelling the globe? Build the ultimate downsizer? Take up belly dancing? Finally get stuck into the garden? With a little bit of financial planning now, you can set yourself up to have a fun and fulfilling retirement.

Setting goals and having a clear aim to work towards will help you stay motivated to save for the future.

When can you retire?

Technically, you can retire whenever you feel like it! However, unless you've won the lottery, your retirement fund will be in a lot healthier shape if you continue to work throughout your 40s and 50s. Perth is not a cheap place to live!

When can you access your super?

You can access your super when you reach your preservation age and are no longer working – based on when you were born, this can be as early as 55 years old. To get the pension you must be between 65 and 67, depending on whether you were born before or after July 1957.

Step 2: Assess how your savings are shaping up

The good news is Australia has the 3rd best retirement income savings system in the world, according to the 2015 Mercer Global Pension Index.

However, superannuation alone may not be enough if you have a taste for the very good life.

According to a 2014 study from the University of Melbourne, only 53 per cent of couples and 23 per cent of singles are on track with their savings for a comfortable retirement.

So will you have enough to enjoy the lifestyle you’ve just identified? To figure that out you’ll need to consider the following:

  • The total value of your assets - this includes your savings, the equity in your home and investments.
  • Where your superannuation is at and the age that you're able to access it.
  • When you will be able to get your pension and what you will be eligible for.

Using an online super calculator will give you an idea of the amount of money you will have to retire on.

Step 3: Develop strategies for savings

It’s never too early to start talking to a financial planner.

They can relieve a huge amount of stress by helping you map out an achievable savings plan and making sure your current assets are working to your best advantage.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) also suggests you:

  • Create a budget and keep up with your retirement planning
  • Do a savings account comparison
  • Make the most of any government entitlements (which can include pension, cheaper medicines and reduced council and water rates).

Make sure you don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

Spreading your investments across a range of holdings – e.g. shares, property and term deposits - can help protect you against fluctuations in the market. 

Step 4: You've found the one - what's next?

How super is your super?

Superannuation is a compulsory saving fund with contributions from your employers, the government and ideally, you!

While most of the time you can choose your own super fund, in some cases it will be selected for you (e.g. if you’re covered by an industrial agreement).

Your choice of fund can have a huge impact on your final super amount.

Speaking to a financial adviser who knows the super fund market can literally save you thousands.

Should you self-manage your super?

If you are financially savvy and have plenty of spare time, you may be contemplating managing your own super fund.

While you will save on fund management fees, you may still need to pay for tax and legal advice, as well as a yearly audit.

You will be responsible for the performance of the fund and any penalties if things go wrong. For an idea of what you’ll be letting yourself in for, check out ASIC’s moneysmart website. https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/

Important information

The information contained on this page has been prepared by Police & Nurses Financial Planning Pty Ltd (P&N Financial Planning) ABN 21 009 245 194 AFSL 237507. P&N Financial Planning is a related entity of, but not guaranteed by, Police & Nurses Limited (P&N Bank) ABN 69 087 651 876 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 240701. P&N Financial Planning is the provider of financial advice services. Services provided by P&N Financial Planning are provided on its own account and not on behalf of P&N Bank and P&N Bank does not endorse or take responsibility for any services provided by P&N Financial Planning. P&N Financial Planning is not an authorised deposit-taking institution and, unless you acquire a P&N Bank product as a consequence of a recommendation made by P&N Financial Planning, monies invested with or through P&N Financial Planning are not a deposit with or liability of P&N Bank. P&N Bank refers customers to P&N Financial Planning only and is not liable for any loss, damage or liability of any kind arising from services provided by P&N Financial Planning. This page is not designed for the purpose of providing personal financial or investment advice. Any advice given is general only and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Please therefore consider whether it is appropriate for you. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision.

Please refer to the Financial Services Guide, Privacy Policy and Complaints Policy for P&N Financial Planning (which you agree to be provided by accessing these links). 

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