Grow. Protect. Enjoy. Winter Edition

Winter has finally arrived and to give you something interesting to read while you’re staying warm inside on these chilly days, here is the Winter edition of Grow. Protect. Enjoy!

Don’t worry, we haven’t mentioned the Federal Budget or the upcoming election, we’ll leave that to the mass media. In this edition, we’ve discussed how to make the most from low interest rates; and after the recent National Consumer Fraud Week we show you how to check your credit rating; and to continue the theme of awareness, we provide details about the Stay Smart Online service; and a reminder about the gifting rules.

We finish on a happy note with a focus on the essential ingredient of life

We hope you enjoy reading this edition and don’t forget to forward or share it with family and friends.

Best Regards,

Frances Hesse

Making the most of low interest rates

Most predictions are that interest rates will remain at the low end for some time to come (some even expect a further drop this year), so while borrowers love low rates and savers curse them, what can be done to make the most of the situation?

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Do you know your credit rating?

If you have borrowed money, whether as a loan or even signed a mobile phone contract, you have earned yourself a credit history. Each time you apply for further credit, the lender will run a check on your credit file to determine the level of risk they take on by lending you money. 

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Staying smart online

Did you know that the federal government has an online service called “Stay Smart Online” to alert internet users of the current security threats we all face? 

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Want to give away your assets? There are rules.

With the approaching implementation of new thresholds under the age pension assets test, Australians who are currently receiving a part pension might be looking at ways to reduce the value of their total assets to continue receiving an age pension benefit under the new levels. If doing this has crossed your mind, you should be very careful. There are strict rules governing what you can give away and when.

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The essential ingredient of life

Here’s a recipe for a basic financial plan:Take one or more income sources and pour into a big pot. Add appropriate amounts of life, income protection and permanent disability insurance. Simmer for a few decades while slowly adding superannuation contributions and a dollop of non-super savings. Stir in some constructive debt, but take care to keep a lid on it. Dip into the pot occasionally to taste. Simmer steadily, and consume regularly after retirement.

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