Turning 60… it’s a time where you’ve spent many years of your working life only dreaming of…
If you have been lucky enough to reach this milestone, you’ve now hit the sweet spot in life where you are finally able to work less, spend more time with family and access your super. Before you kick off your shoes and call it a day, here is a list of things to think about upon turning the big 6-0:
- Seniors card – If you are over age 60 and working less than 20 hours a week, you can apply for a government Seniors Card which entitles you to a range of discounts and offers (examples are transport, gyms, fast food, entertainment, retail etc). This is a great tool to help lower your cost of living.
- Transition to Retirement (TTR) – If you are still working but would like to reduce your working hours, you may want to consider a Transition to Retirement (TTR) strategy. A TTR strategy enables you to draw an income from your superannuation benefits whilst topping up your super with salary sacrifice contributions. It’s a great way to build your super, save on tax and reduce your working hours once you have reached your preservation age (55-60).
- Account-Based Pension (ABP) – If you are retired and are looking to start drawing funds from super, you may want to consider an Account-Based Pension (ABP) strategy. An ABP strategy enables you to start drawing a tax-free pension from your super funds to help supplement/ fund your lifestyle expenses during retirement. Any Investment earnings and realised capital gains within an account-based pension are tax free. Once you reach age 65, you do not need to be retired to draw an ABP.
- Bring forward contributions – If you have come into an inheritance or recently sold an investment property, you may want to consider utilising the bring forward contribution rules. You are eligible to utilise the bring forward contribution rules to maximise your super balance any time prior to turning 65. The strategy may be a great way to build your retirement benefits before it’s too late.
- Work test – If you are looking to maximise your concessional contributions, you are still able to make concessional contributions and claim a tax deduction as long as you continue to meet the ‘work test’. As of 1 July 2020, the work test has changed from age 65 to 67 giving you extra years you are able to contribute and maximise your tax deduction.
- Downsizer contribution – If you are age 65 or older and meet the eligibility requirements, you may be able to make a downsizer contribution into your super fund of up to $300,000 from the proceeds of selling your family home. The great thing about this contribution is that it does not count towards any of your contribution caps and unlike non-concessional contributions, they can still be made if your balance is greater than $1.6 million.
- Commonwealth Seniors Health Card – If you have reached age pension age but do not qualify for the Age Pension (or receive any other social security benefits), you may be eligible for a Commonwealth Seniors Health card. If your Adjusted taxable income and deemed income is within the thresholds $55,808 (if single) or $89,290 (if couple), this card may help lower common everyday expenses such as electricity and gas bills, power and water rates, health care costs and public transport costs.
- Account-Based Pension (ABP) – If you are still working and are looking to start drawing funds from super, you are able to do so via an Account-Based Pension (ABP) strategy from age 65 without needing to retire. This is a great way to help boost your income whilst still working.
If you would like more information on any of the above, speak to your financial planner to discuss the strategies available to you.