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How to re-evaluate your personal finances in the new FY

July 21, 2017  |  #Retirement planning

The new financial year is a time for businesses to set goals for the next 12 months, but why not use this time to re-evaluate your personal finances?

The beginning of the new financial year (FY) is an important date in the business calendar. Organisations must meet various tax and employee obligations, as well as evaluate past performance and set targets for the future.

But it’s not just businesses that can benefit from sprucing up their finances in preparation for the new FY. This is also a great time for anyone to make tweaks where necessary, particularly those approaching retirement.

Now is a better time than ever to gain control of your finances. We can help you to live your dream retirement. Get in touch.
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1. Measure your progress from last year

July 1 marks both the new FY and the halfway point of the calendar year. This makes it a great time to measure your progress on both your FY objectives from 2016-17, as well as any new year’s resolutions you made six months ago.

Have you stuck rigidly to your objectives, or did you fall by the wayside? If you’re in the latter camp, don’t despair. You still have the rest of 2017 to fulfil your new year’s resolutions, and you now have a clean slate to ensure the 2017-18 FY is successful.

In December, we offered financial planning tips for anyone looking to start 2017 with aplomb, and our advice is just as relevant now as it was then. Click here to check out our previous article and learn more about:

  • Getting a financial health check;
  • Setting SMART goals; and
  • Using technology to keep you on track.

 

2. Understand how super changes affect you

Australia’s super system underwent some of the biggest changes in a generation on July 1, and understanding the subsequent impact on your retirement pot is crucial for those close to retirement.

A broad overview of some of the changes can be read here, but you should seek superannuation advice from an expert for more details on how you may be personally affected. Financial advisers can also work closely with you to set new goals this FY to ensure you still have enough money to retire comfortably.

The good news is that many people are expected to benefit from the new rules, with the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia recently estimating that 4 million people in the country will be better off as a result.

3.Review your investments

You should be keeping an eye on your investments all-year round, but the new FY is an excellent time to do a major review of your portfolio to see how your assets are performing.

With 2016-17 in the rear-view mirror (and your income tax return due later this year), you’ll want to ensure your investments are achieving maximum tax efficiency. Rebalancing your portfolio to take into account changing market conditions is also usually recommended at this time of year.

For a review of investor returns in 2016-17, and the outlook for the 2017-18 financial year, click here.

A good rule of thumb for investing is to lean towards a more conservative, low-risk strategy as you get older to prevent any major market swings from having a lasting impact on your retirement funds.

Do you need help preparing your finances for retirement? Please get in touch with Invest Blue for more information.
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4. Consider your employment options

The beginning of the FY is a common time to consider switching jobs. Projects are often wrapping up and many companies have biannual appraisals around this time of year, which can encourage people to think more about whether or not they are happy with their current employer.

This may be particularly important if you’ve reviewed your finances and think you’ll fall short of your retirement target. A new position with higher remuneration could help you put more money aside to get you over the finishing line.

Bear in mind that it’s a popular time of year for people to change roles, so you may face stiffer competition in the job market than in quieter periods.