1. You need to know your FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE NUMBER – what are you working towards and how will you get there? You must have a goal otherwise you are winging it.
  1. Get your HOME LOAN reviewed. Don’t under-estimate the savings a small rate change can make over a long period of time. For example the difference between 4% and 3.5% on a $500,000 loan is approximately $30,000 over 25 years. Don’t be complacent – there are mortgage brokers out there jumping out of their skin to help you.

  2. Get your SUPERANNUATION reviewed! We have the most incredible savings vehicle in the world in the form of superannuation. I generally find that a properly managed super fund will account for approximately two thirds of your Financial Independence Number. Where else can you have your earnings only taxed at 15 per cent and when you’re over 60 and fully retired be taxed at 0 per cent? Your super is incredibly important – don’t neglect it!

  3. Aim for TAX DEDUCTIBLE INVESTMENTS. Did you know that if you invest your accumulated savings, your investment is not tax effective? However, if you paid your accumulated savings directly into your home loan, then borrowed that money from your equity and THEN invested it you would have created a tax deduction for yourself. Saving tax is a great way to boost your savings and get closer to your Financial Independence Number quicker.

  4. PROTECT YOUR INCOME. So you have a dependency on your income to live? To pay your mortgage and look after your family? To have any chance of accumulating wealth in the first place? Well if you don’t have an Income Protection policy in force… GET ONE NOW. Unfortunately really bad things happen to really great people. You’ve got your car insured, but not your ability to earn an income? Come on – time to get your priorities straight. BE CAREFUL – not all policies have sound contracts at claim time and there is a huge difference in the quality of contracts in the life insurance market. Don’t wing this with a TV advert 1300 number! Please seek advice from a good Financial Adviser you can trust.

    Visit www.meritfp.com.au for financial planning advice. *This article sponsored by Merit Planning Hills*

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