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Teaching kids the secrets of financial success

1802 cba i teaching the kids ai

In an increasingly digital world, the value of money can be a difficult concept for children to grasp. Here are some tips for helping your kids and grandkids become wealthy and wise. 

When you were young, do you remember standing next to mum or dad at the corner shop and watching them count out notes and coins to pay for the bread and milk? This was a valuable lesson about the purpose and value of money. 

Fast forward to today – few corner shops exist and the days of counting change are almost over. When our children see us pay for something at the shopping centre, it's likely to be with a piece of plastic – or even by mobile phone. 

That's why it's now more crucial than ever to consciously teach your children and grandchildren about money: how to spend it and how to save it. Here are five ways to do it. 

1. Help them budget and save

Many children believe parents have an endless supply of money – which is why it's so important to talk to kids about money from an early age. You can start by discussing your own household budget and explaining how you manage costs like weekly grocery shopping and phone bills. If there's something your child wants, like a new soccer ball or item of clothing, work out a budget so they can save up and buy it. Then reward them by taking them shopping. 

2. Give them pocket money

Pocket money is one of the simplest and most powerful ways to teach children the value of cash – which is why it should be earned rather than given freely. Whether it's payment for completing chores or a reward for behaving well, children will understand very quickly that money has value. You can also separate their pocket money into portions for spending and saving, so they'll learn how to put money aside for the future. 

3. Set up a bank account

By setting up a bank account for your child, you can teach them the basics of everyday banking. It's worth discussing the statements with them when they arrive – not only so you can explain what each part means, but also so you can check their progress towards their savings goals and praise them as they reach each milestone. You might even open a separate savings account to help making saving fun and easy. 

4. Make money fun

Learning about money doesn't have to be another chore: there are plenty of games you can use to teach kids financial literacy. From a young age, you can play-act spending situations with your kids, like pretending to 'shop' with their toys or using food items in the kitchen. As your children get older, these games can become more advanced. In fact, one of the best ways may be through playing Monopoly – which you can use to teach more complex concepts like rent and taxes. 

5. Surf the net

The internet is a treasure trove of information on all things financial. Here are some of our favourites

  • MoneySmart – packed with online resources and activities for children of different ages
  • CommBank Youth App – teaches real-life money skills to under 14s
  • Kidspot – a popular online parenting magazine with games and ideas for finance education
  • Bankaroo – a fun virtual bank for kids to learn about saving, spending and budgeting.


For more information

We can help you to explore the financial strategies available to help your children or grandchildren. 

Call 0883225088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au

Your financial future starts now

1802 cba i your financial future ai

They say every great journey begins with a single step - and yours is just beginning. Here's how to get on the path to financial freedom at the same time. 

Every year, thousands of young Australians start one of the biggest journeys of their lives: their careers. And if you're one of them, you're probably having a great time making the most of your new income without thinking too much about planning ahead. 

But the good news is, you can get yourself set up financially for the future while still enjoying life now. Here are some things to keep in mind so you can get started on the right foot. 

What are your life goals?

When you first join the workforce, it's worth taking the time to really think about where you want to be in 5 or 10 years from now. That way, you'll be able to make sure you're headed in the right direction. 

As the first step, consider your short- and long-term goals, both personal and professional. These may include: 
  • Buying a car
  • Moving out of home
  • Furthering your education
  • Finding your dream job
  • Saving for a house
  • Starting a relationship
A financial adviser can help you see the big picture, while still making the most of the here and now. The sooner you get professional advice, the easier it will be to navigate a path towards your goals. 

How much will it all cost?

If you're moving out of home for the first time, you're probably celebrating your newfound freedom and independence - but beware how expensive your independence can be. Even with a regular paycheque coming in, it's easy to overspend without thinking about it. The last thing you want is to rely on credit cards that you never seem able to pay off. 

The Australian Government estimates the minimum cost of living to be over $20,000a yeari - so it's a good idea to work out a careful budget based on your salary. You should take into account your ongoing expenses like rent, bills and groceries while also putting aside savings for things that crop up occasionally, like car rego and medical costs. 

It's also worth factoring in your goals and including a savings plan in your budget. So, for example, if your aim is to buy a car, set a deadline and calculate how much you need to save out of each paycheque to reach that goal.

Why do you need super?

At this stage of your life, retirement seems a long, long way off. But right now, time is on your side for growing your nest egg - and you'll thank yourself later. 

In most cases, your employer has to contribute 9.5% of your pre-tax salary into your super fund. But you can make your retirement savings grow faster by making extra contributions yourself. One way is to salary sacrifice an amount from each paycheque straight into super. 

For example, a 20 year old who earns $50,000 a year could expect to have a super balance of around $256,000 if they retire at the age of 67. But if they put in an extra $50 a week (via salary sacrifice) throughout their working years, they'll end up with more than $115,000 extra at retirement age - which will make a huge difference to their quality of life.ii 

Which types of insurance should you consider?

Sure, you're young and healthy - but the reality is, no matter what shape you're in, you never know what lies around the corner. And right now, there's a good chance you're taking some risks as well, especially if you enjoy active sports or adventure travel. 

That's why you should consider protecting yourself with insurance cover, so you know you'll be looked after if you end up with a serious injury. We can take a close look at your situation and help make the right insurance choices for your needs. 

01-Feb-18 

i Australian Government, Living costs in Australia, July 2016. 
ii Based on calculations made using ASIC's MoneySmart Superannuation Calculator. Assumptions: 4.8% investment returns (before tax and fees) on a Balanced investment option, with 7% tax on earnings, administration fees of $50 pa and investment fees of 0.5% pa.



For more information

By getting guidance from us now, you'll be taking an important first step towards achieving financial freedom in the future. 

Call 0883225088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au

Special Edition: Market and economic view


PECIAL EDITION: Market and economic overview

How to create the ultimate bucket list

How to create the ultimate bucket list

What do you wish you could tick off your bucket list? Meet Sebastian Terry, the man who's living his dream life – and motivating others to do the same. 

If you knew you only had a short period of time to live, what would you do differently? That was the question that Sebastian Terry, author of 100 Things: What's On Your List?, asked himself following the death of a close friend at a young age. 

"After considering my friend's life, I realised I probably wasn't living my own to the fullest," Sebastian said. "I wrote down a list of things that would make me smile more. I created a blueprint to happiness, and I dropped everything in my life to pursue it." 

From marrying a stranger in Las Vegas to living with a tribe in Kenya, Sebastian has already completed more than 70 things on his bucket list. 

Here are his top three tips so you can do the same. 

Tip 1. Set achievable goals

According to Sebastian, your journey to a more enjoyable life starts with an important first step: creating a list. 

He said, "The first thing that anyone has to do is give themselves permission to sit down and consider their goals, values and beliefs. A meaningful list will derive straight from those values." 

And Sebastian doesn't accept excuses from people who say there are external factors preventing them from setting goals for themselves. 

"At the end of the day, we're accountable for what we do in our lives," he said. "You don't have to have 100 goals, but make sure you have at least one." 

Tip 2. Don't be afraid to dream

Sebastian encourages others to dream big when they set their goals – which means thinking outside of the box. 

"I think we're all dreamers, but we're not given permission to dream by society," he said. "We're conditioned to living in a certain way and doing the things that people around us do." 

But when you step out of your comfort zone, you can discover a whole new world of possibilities and realise you're capable of much more than you think. 

"You're testing yourself in a new way," Sebastian said, "You get to learn about yourself a little bit more and grow as a person." 

Tip 3. Make plans – and stick to them

While some of your dreams may be things that can only happen spontaneously, most will take considerable amounts of planning. 

Sebastian commented, "One of my goals was to compete in an Ironman competition. It took a lot of preparation: I had to buy the right gear and train for nine months." 

That's why it's essential to create a plan and then break it down into smaller steps so you can reach it. And, to help you stick to your plan, Sebastian recommends taking inspiration from those who've already achieved similar goals. 

"We didn't know we could fly to the moon, but now we know," he said. "Look around at what other people are doing – because then you get to see what's possible." 

Planning for the best

When it comes to funding your dream life, a strong financial plan is a vital tool for helping you achieve your bucket list items. Your financial adviser can help you set goals and put plans in place to reach them. 

So, what's on your bucket list? 

01-Dec-17

For more information

Speak to us if you would like to understand how this information might impact your financial situation.

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au
Important information
Robert Julian is an are authorised representative of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

Cashing in on the sharing economy

Cashing in on the sharing economy

Thinking about using your car, home or personal skills to make some extra cash over summer? Before you do, make sure you understand what's involved. 

The 'sharing economy' refers to the sharing of goods, skills or services for a fee, usually facilitated by a third party through a website or app.i In recent years, it's revolutionised how we book holidays, get around town, source help – and even earn money. So how can you aim to profit in this new economy? 

Get in the driver's seat

Uber is the most popular ride-share service. Over one million Australians have downloaded the Uber app, so they can connect with a driver whenever they need a ride.ii 

To become an Uber driver yourself, you must own or have access to a four-door car in good condition. You also need to be at least 21, have a full driver's licence and provide proof of insurance, as well as undergoing a background check. 

Like any other worker, you'll have to pay tax. You'll also need to get an ABN and be registered for GST – regardless of how much you earn from driving.iii 

Your payment rate includes a base fare, plus time and distant rates, minus a fee for Uber. You're responsible for paying for petrol, tolls, vehicle registration and appropriate insurance cover, plus depreciation and any repairs your car needs.iv Some of these expenses may be tax-deductible, so be sure to keep records like statements of earnings, receipts and logbooks. 

My home is your home

Got a spare room, an unused granny flat or a vacant holiday apartment? If so, you could join thousands of other Airbnb hosts in Australia, who rented their properties to over 2.1 million guests in 2015–16.v 

To become a host, simply register on the Airbnb website or app, take some attractive photos of your space and list its price, your house rules and any selling points – like air conditioning, a pool or nearby attractions. 

Potential guests will then contact and pay you through the website or app. You'll also need to clean the space regularly, and arrange to meet your guests to provide keys and instructions. 

Many body corporates are anti-Airbnb – and noisy guests could make you a pariah in your neighbourhood. And while Airbnb offers Host Protection Insurance, you should check that your home and contents insurance covers damage caused by paying guests. 

Unlike Uber, there's no requirement to register for GST, but you'll have to pay tax on your Airbnb income. This could be up to 47% (including Medicare levy) of what you make, so keep receipts of your eligible expenses which can be used to claim a tax deduction and reduce your taxable income. And remember, renting your home means you could be hit with a capital gains tax bill if you sell it later. 

A master of trades?

Another potential money spinner is to rent out your skills on Airtasker. This could involve anything from designing a website to packing boxes or assembling furniture – all for a fee. Sometimes the fee is fixed by the person offering the job; other times you can negotiate. 

Airtasker then takes a 15% service fee from what you earn, and you'll also need to get an ABN and pay tax on your earnings. 

With Airtasker's public liability insurance, you might be protected if you injure someone or damage their property on the job. But this doesn't cover all activities, personal injury or loss or damage of your own equipment – so be sure to get your own insurance too. 

01-Dec-17 

i Australian Taxation Office, The sharing economy and tax, 2017. 

ii Roy Morgan Research, The Uber phenomenon, 2016. 

iii Australian Taxation Office, Ride-sourcing and tax, 2017. 

iv Deloitte Access Economics, The sharing economy and the Competition and Consumer Act, 2015. 

v Deloitte Access Economics, Economic effects of Airbnb in Australia, 2017.

For more information

Talk to us about insurance options to best suit your situation. 

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au
Important information
Robert Julian is an authorised representative of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

Your top five New Year’s financial resolutions

Your top five New Year's financial resolutions

Overspent this year? Here's how to put your finances back on track – and even get ahead. 

Despite the best intentions, many of us will finish this year on a low note financially. Wouldn't it be great to start the New Year for once without having to play catch-up? 

Now is the perfect time to start planning your financial strategy for the year ahead. Here are our top five financial resolutions that you can make right now, so you'll be in a better position by next December. 

Resolution 1: I will review my household spending

A detailed budget can be the most valuable tool you have for managing your finances. A good place to start is by using the MoneySmart Budget Planner. First, list your total income from any earnings, allowances and investments. Then, add in all your weekly, monthly and annual expenses, including the costs to repay any debts like credit cards or your home loan. That way, you'll know exactly how much you have left over each week or month for extra luxuries – or where you might need to tighten your belt. 

Resolution 2: I will manage my debts

Clearing your debts might be easier said than done – but whatever you do, don't stop chipping away at them. Remember, the longer your debts stay with you, the more you'll have to spend on interest. 

If your debts are getting you down, talk to your financial adviser. They can help you work out a realistic repayment plan and could even be able to develop a strategy that could make debt management a bit easier. 

For example, if you're surrounded by credit card bills, you might be able to consolidate your debts on a single card with a lower interest rate than what you're currently paying. Or if you feel like you're not making any progress paying off your home loan, you might be able to switch to another loan provider who's offering a more competitive rate. 

Resolution 3: I will improve my cash flow

If you find yourself living from one pay cheque to the next, it might be time to take a look at your incomings and outgoings to see if there's a way to smooth out your cash flow. 

Of course, this will mean something different for everyone. There might be opportunities to boost your income, either by working more hours in your current job, doing some extra work on the side, or finding a new role that pays more. Or if none of those options are possible for you, it might be a case of revisiting your budget to see if there are any lifestyle changes you could make. 

Resolution 4: I will start saving

Once you've got your cash flow and debts sorted, it's much easier to create a realistic savings plan and stick to it. 

Saving can become even easier if you open a high-interest savings account. And by setting up a direct debit, you can automatically deposit a fixed amount from your everyday account as soon as you get paid. This will give your savings a better chance of growing without you having to put in the hard yards. 

If you're saving for something specific, like a holiday or a new car, you should also check out the MoneySmart Savings Goals Calculator. By keying in the amount you need to save, your preferred timeframe and the rate of interest your savings account earns, you can then work out how much you'll need to put aside each week or fortnight so you can reach your goal. 

Resolution 5: I will focus on the future

By getting your finances under control, you'll be in a better position to start thinking about your long-term investment strategy. Depending on your situation, you might prefer to focus on either your super or your non-super investments, or a mixture of both. If you're not sure, your financial adviser can give you the guidance you need. 

Provided it is right for your circumstances, one way to grow your super faster is through salary sacrificing. Even a small amount each week or fortnight can have a big impact by the time you retire. 

Alternatively, you might want to look at investing outside super. On one hand, the tax treatment of your investments may not be as favourable as it is in the super environment, but on the other hand, you can access your capital and earnings more readily, without having to wait until you reach retirement age. 

When it comes to working out the right investment strategy for your needs, speak to your financial adviser. They can create an investment plan tailored for your personal circumstances and lifestyle goals, to put you on course towards a happier financial future. 

01-Dec-17

Important information
Robert Julian is an are authorised representative of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

For more information

Talk to us about insurance options to best suit your situation. 

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au

Healthy and wealthy New Year

Healthy and wealthy New Year

As the holiday season approaches, it's easy to be distracted from your financial goals. But this is actually the perfect time to put a few simple plans in place for a positive start to the New Year. 

New Year's resolutions have a bad reputation, and for good reason. So let's agree up front that we won't think of financial preparations for the New Year as "resolutions". Instead this is a great opportunity to set things in order, re-group and look back to ensure things are on track, and of course to re-balance and plan for the year ahead. 

Best practice around reviewing your finances for the New Year begins with a calculation of your net worth. Save this somewhere so it's easily accessible next year, and you'll have a simple and effective way to measure your progress against a set goal. Include all of your assets (property, cash etc.) and liabilities to calculate a final figure. 

Next, pick a couple of items from your financial portfolio, whether they be credit card or mortgage, superannuation accounts or insurance policies etc, and do some research to find out whether you're getting the best possible deal. Interest rates, fees and risk profiles should be checked at least every few years for each of your accounts. Just as compound interest can be enormously effective over time, so too higher fees and costs can result in far less wealth at the end of your investment period. 

Spend some time getting to know your investments. How much is in your super? How is it invested? Are you on target to achieve your final goal? What difference could you make by re-balancing certain investments? Ask questions and seek clear and relevant answers as if you're looking after the world's most important retirement nest egg …because you are! 

Then, depending on your stage of life: 

Up to 40 years old

  • Consider maximising the effects of compound interest and perhaps even saving a little tax by salary sacrificing a small amount – perhaps $20 to $50 a week – into your super. A little now adds up to a lot later. Be wary not to exceed contributions caps though. 

  • Check that your investments are allocated correctly to match your risk profile and the fact that you have several decades to ride out any market turbulence. 

  • Analyse your insurance needs and check you have the correct levels of cover. You possibly have people that rely on you to provide for them. Make sure you, and they, are suitably protected.

From 40 to 60 years old

  • It's time to start knocking down that bad debt, so make that a priority for the next few years and track your success using your net worth document. 

  • Insurance is vital at this stage of life as you'll likely have dependants and major responsibilities, such as a mortgage. Check you are insured to the right level. 

  • Consider what you can do at work, or outside of work, in order to improve your earning potential. 

  • Analyse your superannuation and figure out whether you need to begin maximising contributions, but don't exceed contributions caps as additional tax will then apply. 

  • Depending on your comfort with risk and your time left in the market, your portfolio's risk/growth exposure should be periodically fine-tuned.

Pre-retirees and retirees

  • How long will your retirement wealth last? How are your investments performing? This is perhaps the most important period of life to ensure your portfolio and retirement income stream are suited to your lifestyle. 

  • Is your estate protected? Organise a will and enduring power of attorney if you haven't already done so. 

  • Put some money aside to enjoy yourself whether it be for travel, a hobby, a course or simply a night out to dinner every so often. You have earned it.

Planning for the best

To revisit your financial plan and ensure you're on track to achieving your goals, or to put new plans in place for the year ahead, speak to your financial adviser. 

01-Dec-17


For more information

Speak to us if you would like to understand how this information might impact your financial situation.

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au
Important information
Robert Julian is an authorised representative of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

Pensioner Concession Card reinstated

Pensioner Concession Card reinstated

Did you, or a member of your family, have the Pensioner Concession Card cancelled because of the changes to the asset test? If so, it's time to check your letterbox for a pleasant surprise. 

If you're retired or close to retirement, you'll probably recall that the government changed the assets test for pensioners in January 2017. You may also have been one of the Australians that had their pensions cancelled because of the changes – and with it, lost your entitlement to the Pensioner Concession Card. 

If you had your Pensioner Concession Card cancelled, you would have received a Health Care Card and, if you'd reached age pension age, a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card. However, the Pensioner Concession Card provided some benefits not provided by the replacement cards, so losing it put a dent in many pensioners' hip pockets. 

But here's some great news: the government has decided to reinstate the Pensioner Concession Card to those who had theirs cancelled as a result of the January 2017 assets test changes. 

The change took place from Monday 9 October 2017 onwards – so if you're one of the 92,000 plus people affected, you should receive your reissued card in the post soon.i 

Valuable concessions

Former pensioners will now be able to access some of the card's valuable benefits again that may not have been provided by the Health Care Card / Commonwealth Seniors Health Card. 

These include:

  • discounted hearing services from the Department of Health, such as hearing assessments and subsidised, high quality hearing devices 

  • various state based concessions depending on the state or territory in which you live. For instance, you might get cheaper gas and electricity bills, discounted water or property rates, cheaper glasses or a discount on your motor vehicle registration. You could also pay less for public transport (e.g. train travel) – and may even receive a perk or two from private businesses.

What to do next

When your Pensioner Concession Card is reinstated, you'll still be able to keep your Seniors Card (if you received one), so you won't lose your Energy Supplement – but your Health Care Card will be cancelled. From now on, your Pensioner Concession Card will be automatically reissued every two years – and it will remain exempt from the income and assets tests. 

If you think you're entitled to a Pensioner Concession Card but haven't received it by the end of October 2017, you can make an enquiry online by setting up a myGov account, or call 132 300, Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm

i Minister for Human Services website, October 2017 

03-Oct-17



For more information

Speak to us if you would like to understand how this information might impact your financial situation.

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au
Important information
Robert Julian is an authorised representative of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

How to be financially prepared this Christmas

How to be financially prepared this Christmas

With Christmas just around the corner, here are 5 tips to help plan ahead and avoid a financial hangover on New Year's Day. 

Think back to last Christmas and consider where the extra expenses came from. Was it petrol for the drive to the holiday destination? Gifts for new children in the extended family? Wine for the constant gatherings? And don't forget the taxi fares for the journeys home from nights out. 

However you look at it, Christmas is a pricey time of year. If the expense causes stress then the holiday period is ruined. 

Here are some tips to prepare for, and enjoy Christmas.


1. Figure out a budget

What exactly are you going to spend on gifts, food, drink, accommodation, airfares, fuel, cabs etc.? Be realistic and even pessimistic. If you over-prepare then you'll end up with a surplus, which is a great result. 

2. Christmas saver

Consider opening a new account which you can put a weekly amount into over the next few months in order to cover most, if not all, of your Christmas expenses. Even better, if you have a mortgage account, consider putting the extra money into the redraw section - that way you could save some mortgage interest during the final quarter of the year. 

3. Gifts

Figure out what you are happy to spend on each person and ensure you stick to it. Give yourself time to think about gifts, working out exactly what each person will receive, to keep your shopping trips short and avoid extra purchases. And negotiate with family members to stick below a certain amount, or to do Secret Santa, in order to keep costs down. 

4. Credit card spending

From now until Christmas, make additional weekly payments onto your credit card so you're not caught out, as many people are, with an unmanageable credit card debt once you roll into January. 

5. New year goal

Figure out what you wish for in the New Year and start taking steps towards that goal right now. Whether it is a fitness goal, a new skill, a bucket list item or something as simple as a reunion with an old friend, make sure at least a small part of the Christmas period is about you by planning for and achieving something specia
Important information
Robert Julian is an authorised representatives of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing. 


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Speak to us if you would like to understand how this information might impact your financial situation.

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Where in Australia can you afford to live?

1709 cba i where in australia can you afford to live ai

Where in Australia can you afford to live?

Housing affordability continues to be a major challenge for many Australians. But if you're willing to live outside the big cities, you could find the right property for your budget – just don't forget to consider your lifestyle needs. 

According to recent statistics, housing prices around the country rose by an average of 10.2% between March 2016 and March 2017. Unsurprisingly, the Sydney and Melbourne markets recorded the steepest increases – with average prices up by 14.4% and 13.4% respectively.i 

But while home ownership may seem out of reach for many Australians, it's not all doom and gloom – especially if you're willing to live outside the major cities. Firstly though, you'll need to consider how your lifestyle would have to change as well. 

Single in the city

Perhaps you love the buzz of urban living, or maybe the work you do is city based. Either way, if Sydney or Melbourne price tags are out of your reach but you can't imagine living outside one of the capitals, it might be worth looking at Brisbane or Perth. In both locations, the median cost of a unit is around $375,000.ii 

Alternatively, head over to Adelaide, where the median apartment price is currently just over $310,000. Then there's Hobart, where you could snap up your own free-standing house with a backyard for around $400,000.iii 

But remember, finding suitable employment could be a struggle in the smaller cities. So if you can't take your work with you, it might be worth following up some job leads before you pack your bags. 

A family home

If you're bringing up a family and you're priced out of the city property market, a move to regional Australia could be the way to go. Not only are prices generally lower, your family might also enjoy the outdoor lifestyle on offer. 

But you'll need to choose your destination carefully. Real estate in some coastal areas, such as the NSW north coast or along Victoria's Great Ocean Road, have skyrocketed over the last decade. As an example, a three-bedroom house in tourist mecca Byron Bay could set you back $1.5 million, whereas a similar abode in the NSW inland town of Orange could be well over four times cheaper. 

Again, you'll also need to consider your professional options first – particularly if you can't work remotely in your current job. It's also important to factor in other living costs like petrol for the extra commute or higher grocery prices the further you are from a city. 

A gentler pace of living

Are you dreaming of wide open spaces, rolling hills or daily walks on the beach? If so, it's still possible to find the home you want while avoiding the high costs of popular tourist spots. And you don't have to move somewhere remote to do it either. 

From the beachside haven of Yankalilla only an hour from Adelaide, to Bayonet Head on Western Australia's southern coast, or the NSW university town of Armidale, there are plenty of options available around the country for an affordable sea or tree change. 

But before putting in an offer on your dream home, make sure you've considered all the pros and cons. As well as being far away from friends and family, you may also find that schools, healthcare facilities and government services may be more limited than you're used to. 

Talk to your financial adviser

If you're in the market for a new home, your adviser can help make sure you're financially prepared for the journey ahead. 

i Australian Bureau of Statistics, June 2017 (http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/6416.0) 

ii Domain State of the Market Report, June 2017. 

iii realestate.com.au, accessed 31 July 2017. 

28-Aug-17

For more information

Speak to us if you would like to understand how this information might impact your financial situation. 

Call 08 8322 5088 or email us at enquiries@jsaaccounting.com.au 
www.jsaaccounting.com.au

Important information
Robert Julian & Jill Hoadley and JSA Accounting Pty Ltd are authorised representatives of Count Financial. This document contains general advice. It does not take account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider talking to a financial adviser before making a financial decision. This document has been prepared by Count Financial Limited ABN 19 001 974 625, AFSL 227232 (Count) a wholly-owned, non-guaranteed subsidiary of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124. Count Wealth Accountants® is the business name of Count. Information in this document is based on current regulatory requirements and laws, which may be subject to change. While care has been taken in the preparation of this document, no liability is accepted by Count Financial, its related entities, agents and employees for any loss arising from reliance on this document. Count Financial is registered with the Tax Practitioners Board as a Registered Tax (Financial) Adviser. However your authorised representative may not be a Registered Tax Agent. Consequently, tax considerations are general in nature and do not include an assessment of your overall tax position. You should seek tax advice from a Registered Tax Agent. If you do not wish to receive direct marketing material from your adviser, please notify your adviser by email, phone or in writing.

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Jill Hoadley
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Financial Planning & Superannuation
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