Secret #9 Finances
In this book I am not going to write much about finances as there are hundreds of them around. If you have a little or a lot it is all about management and planning.
Some retirees feel that a happy retirement is guaranteed by financial security. However, there is no price tag on successful retirement.
As someone once said, “having a million dollars is NOT a retirement plan!” Financial comfort refers to being able to manage your life in a satisfying and fulfilling way using the financial resources that you have.
I certainly don’t have a lot of finances however through good planning we have a comfortable and fulfilling life.
If financial discomfort contributes to retirement stress, then your financial plan becomes a negative rather than a positive.
The keys to achieving financial comfort is to have a clear understanding of the financial resources you have and the demands on your money that will come from the life you lead (both now and in the future).
One good way to look at your financial situation in this next life phase is to think about the three “buckets” that you will have to keep filled in order to achieve financial comfort:
Your “essentials” bucket, which will pay for all of your basic needs
Your “lifestyle” bucket, which will fund those fun things that you dream of doing in retirement
Your “nest egg” bucket, which will fund any emergencies that may arise, provide you with a sense of security through good and challenging times and ultimately will form part of your legacy.
Unfortunately as the baby boomers start retiring it is becoming a huge industry. The ABS says there are 3.6 million people who were already retired, more than half of whom were aged 70 years and over.
Add to this about a thousand a day turning 65 and you can see we have a huge pool of cashed up seniors. Business has noticed this and has been setting up various schemes to get your money.
For example there are many clubs starting up promoting group discounts on everything from power to insurance and food. They have to make money so in most cases it is through commissions which then are deducted from your final cost.
Example electricity to club member with a 25% discount, but most companies, if you go direct offer 28 to 30%. Why the difference and you’ll find it in the commissions.
There are so many books, seminars etc. out there on finances that I cannot offer much new information except to say do your research and if it sounds too good to be true it possibly is.
So if I had a lot of money in my retirement I would be seeking out advice from an independent financial consultant. The main reason for this is to get unbiased advice.
When you have a short list of advisers, it’s important to check their history, qualifications and current employment status before you approach them about getting advice.
Check that your adviser is licensed to provide the type of advice you want.
The register tells you:
- the adviser’s qualifications, experience and employment history
- what product areas the adviser can provide advice about (check that these are the areas you’re looking for)
- whether the adviser is a member of any professional bodies or industry associations that are relevant to providing financial services
- whether the adviser has been the subject of disciplinary action by ASIC
- the name and number of the Australian financial services (AFS) licence holder who employs or authorises the financial adviser to provide advice
- details about who owns or controls the licence holder.
If the adviser is not operating under a licence, do not deal with them – they are breaking the law and you will have little protection if things go wrong.
If you have a large portfolio you probably already know this information.
As for me my portfolio is very small with just a little cash in the bank and some micro investing, so I need to organize my life differently. We need to have a strong budget in place.
What is Be Connected?
We are very lucky here in Australia as there are Government departments and a number of private organizations that provide help and support free of charge to retirees regarding their finances.
Be Connected is a new, free program for older Australians to help them increase their online confidence and skills, and realise the benefits of going online.
It is also an Australia wide initiative empowering all Australians to thrive in a digital world. They have online learning resources as well as a Network of community partners – the Be Connected Network – offer in-person support so you can develop your digital skills and confidence. Find a local place for friendly help and advice, or join the Network to help others.
Each state and territory has a Seniors Card scheme and some reciprocal arrangements are in place for using your card in other states. It is a free card providing transport concessions and participating business discounts on a range of goods and services.
To be eligible you must be a resident of the state, 60 years of age or over, and not working more than a set numbers of hours per week in paid employment.
Track My Spend
Is a govt app to help you budget and stay on track
For spread sheets use Google Sheets – http://bit.ly/2TYKu8j