Many SMSFs have used a “limited recourse borrowing arrangement” (LRBA) as part of a gearing strategy to build members’ retirement savings, allowing the funds to borrow to buy high-value growth assets, typically real estate. However, proposed new laws that seek to count a portion of an SMSF’s loan balance towards some members’ own “total superannuation…

The government has created a new opportunity for some recent retirees to make additional superannuation contributions. From 1 July 2019, a 12-month exemption from the “work test” for newly retired individuals aged between 65 and 74 years with a total superannuation balance below $300,000 means many older Australians will now have an extra year in…

The progressive lowering of company tax rates may have the effect of locking the benefit of any tax paid at a higher rate in the franking account. A company pays tax at a certain rate on the income year and franking debits accrue at that rate in that year. If dividends referable to that income…

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has released proposed updates to organisational competence requirements for financial advice licensees, in a bid to lift education, training, and ethical standards in the financial advice industry. The proposal is based on existing draft guidance published by the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA). Broadly, the new…

If you own a private company, deemed dividend payments or Div 7A may be familiar to you. In short, it is designed to ensure that income is not inappropriately sheltered in corporate structures at the corporate tax rate. It usually applies when a private company provides a benefit to a shareholder (or their associate), and…

Do you have an ongoing fee arrangement with your financial adviser? If so did you know that by law, they are required to provide you with a Fee Disclosure Statement (FDS) at least every 12 months? The FDS should set out details about the amount of ongoing fees paid, information about the services you were…

The Royal Commission into misconduct in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry has revealed some major deficiencies in terms of financial advice provided to consumers. Even though the Commission itself cannot fix or award compensation or make orders to require parties to a dispute to take or not take any action, the media exposure…

Reverse mortgages are a credit product that allows older individuals to achieve their immediate financial goals by using the equity in their home to borrow amounts. The loan typically does not need to be repaid until a later time (ie. when the borrower has vacated the property or has passed away). For older individuals who…

Superannuation and separation: Who keeps the money? A divorce from your husband or wife, or a separation from your de facto, could mean a division of your assets and debts, whether they’re held separately or together, and superannuation is no exception. Another thing to note is even if one of you hasn’t contributed to super…

Who is the boss of your super? It’s tempting not to think too much about your super when retirement is still a long way off. After all, it’s growing just fine by itself … right? But the reality is, if you don’t take control now, you might be left with less than what you need…

© 2015 MARK BABBAGE | MADE FOR FUN!

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