Financial Health Check

Every once in a while it pays to have a good look at the basics in respect to our financial position. While everyone’s personal goals and financial objectives are different, the following questions cover simple issues commonly encountered.

If you can answer the following questions confidently, you are well on the way to financial independence. If you are not happy with your answers to the questions (if relevant to you), perhaps we can assist you by pointing you in the right direction with professional help.

Budgeting

  • Am I finding it difficult to save?
  • Do I have too many bills to pay?
  • Will I be able to pay for my next holiday?
  • Should I be putting something aside for the kids’education?
  • Do I have access to funds if I need them?

Mortgages, Loans and Credit Cards

  • How long will it take me to pay off my mortgage?
  • Am I paying too much interest?
  • Am I paying too much in fees?
  • Do I have too many loans?
  • Do I have a competitive interest rate?

Investments

  • Am I saving tax-effectively?
  • Do I have a savings plan?
  • Am I happy with my financial position?
  • Am I am happy with my investment performance?
  • Do I understand the risks of my investments?

Taxation

  • Am I paying too much tax?

Superannuation

  • Is my superannuation performing well?
  • Am I getting value for the fees I pay?
  • Do I have too many superannuation funds?
  • Do I know what happens to my superannuation when I die?
  • Do I know if my beneficiaries may be subject to tax on life insurances held through my superannuation?

Risk Planning

  • Is my family adequately provided  for if I were to die or become permanently disabled?
  • Will we be able to meet our expenses and maintain our lifestyle if I had an injury or illness that stopped me from working?
  • If one of our children suffered a disability and I had to take extensive time off work, how would I cope financially?
  • Have I appointed an Enduring Power of Attorney to deal with my financial affairs if I can no longer do it myself?
  • Have I appointed an Enduring Guardian to deal with my medical and lifestyle decisions if I can no longer do it myself?

Estate Planning

  • Do I know what will happen to my assets when I die?
  • Have I made a Will?
  • Has the Will been correctly signed and witnessed?
  • Have I married, separated or divorced since the Will was made?
  • Does the Will correctly reflect my wishes?
  • Have I told somebody where my Will is located?
  • Have I disposed of assets that are specifically mentioned in the Will?
  • Who will receive my insurance proceeds?
  • Have I provided my executor with flexibility in dealing with estate taxation issues?

Retirement

  • How much money will I retire on?
  • How long will my retirement savings last?
  • Can I afford to maintain my lifestyle in retirement?
  • Could I qualify for Centrelink benefits?
  • Should I be saving more for my retirement?
  • Have I decided where I will live when I retire?

Aged Care Accommodation Planning

  • Do I, or my elderly parents, need ongoing care?
  • What level of care is needed, and who will provide that care?
  • Will the care be provided at home, or will a place be required in a hostel or nursing home?
  • Do I understand the costs, and how to minimize them?
  • How will I pay for care for myself, or for my parents?

Business Asset Protection

  • Do I understand how my assets are at risk?
  • Am I comfortable with the measures I have taken to safeguard my assets?

Business Succession Planning

  • What will happen to my business if I can’t work?
  • When I retire, who will take over my business?
  • If I own the business jointly with others, is there a partnership or shareholders agreement in place?
  • Does the partnership or shareholders agreement provide an agreed buyout process including how the business is to be valued?
  • How will I afford to buy out a partner if required, or how will they pay for my share if I want to leave the business?

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