Solutions For Individuals & Families
Super has become the cornerstone of most Australian’s retirement planning. However due to its perceived complexity, super is often overlooked in its usefulness for long term wealth accumulation.
Lumen Financial Strategists ensures that Clients understand the benefits and tax advantages of ‘superannuation’ and how their super is invested to ensure they remain on track to achieve their goals. Importantly, we review the super fund administration and investment fees to ensure investment returns are not eroded by unnecessary high costs.
Super can be an appropriate structure to provide personal insurances for Life, Total & Permanent Disablement and Income Protection. At Lumen, we will also review the cost of premiums and the level of insurance benefits provided. In addition, we will discuss if holding personal insurances within super is appropriate for clients’ circumstances.
Self Managed Super Fund
SMSF’s (or DIY Super) are gaining popularity as people wish to take control of their retirement futures.
SMSF’s may provide considerably more investment control as access can be gained to direct investments like shares and property. An SMSF can acquire a commercial property (Business Real Property) as an investment. Many Lumen clients run their businesses from commercial properties owned by their SMSF.
Lumen also can recommend a tailored investment portfolio with full diversification across all asset classes and regions, is transparent, low cost and directly linked with each SMSF member’s investment strategy.
Some clients wish to gain exposure to property by borrowing via their SMSF (Limited Recourse Borrow Arrangements – LRBA). This strategy is complex and must be established and structured correctly otherwise there can be costly unintended regulatory and compliance issues. At Lumen, we have advised and implemented this strategy for clients many times and understand the process thoroughly.
Having an SMSF, you as Trustee are responsible for the management and running of the SMSF so you must have the desire, time and inclination as SMSF’s are not ‘set and forget’.
There are regulatory compliance requirements that must be attended to. Investment decisions need to be made, consideration of personal insurances for members and attending to the SMSF day to day administration etc are some of the Trustee responsibilities. Some people will undertake some of these task themselves, whereas most will seek expert advice and assistance whilst being actively involved in the decision making process.
It is important to note that there are risks from a financial and compliance perspective (to name a few) so having an SMSF is not for everyone.
At Lumen Financial Strategists, we specialise in SMSF advice and understand this area thoroughly so we can help you decide if having a SMSF is for you.
The Lumen DIY-Super Solution provides clients with a complete solution for their SMSF needs or they may choose certain components.
If you are thinking if a SMSF is right for you, or you would like us to review your existing SMSF, please contact us, we would be more than happy to show how we can help you.
Personal and Family Protection
Keeping assets protected is extremely important. We have all worked hard to have our homes, cars, boats, investment properties etc., and we value these in our every-day lives. Because of the importance we place on these items, we take out insurance cover to protect us against damage or loss.
Unfortunately, Australians do not recognise that their biggest asset is themselves. The ability for a person to earn an income is their biggest asset (after all, how did you acquire all the assets you cherish).
Ask yourself this question…
”If I was forced to stop work right now due to a serious injury or illness or worse than that died, how would I or my family survive, how would the mortgage get paid, what would my family’s financial future look like?”
A common misconception is that Private Health, Mortgage Protection Insurance, Workers’ Compensation or the Government would help out, unfortunately any such safety nets fall well short of what people need to get by. Another alternative is to sell off assets to pay down debt or provide cash flow.
Other options would be personal insurances (Life, Total & Permanent Disablement, Trauma and Income Protection) which can be held personally or some through super.
At Lumen Financial Strategists because of our experience with helping families in this area, we understand the issues that people are faced with when such a traumatic event occurs. We will tailor a Risk Protection Plan that identifies your areas of financial risk, and provides you with recommendations of options on how this can be protected.
Wealth Accumulation & Investment
Investing can take many forms. Investing means different things to different people. We understand that investors require proven strategies to achieve their investment goals and objectives.
At Lumen, we will take the time to understand your individual situation and will identify investment solutions that will help you build your wealth. We will create a tailored investment strategy that utilises market leading investment products. We can also review the investment portfolio and provide you with ongoing regular updates .
You can feel confident knowing your investments will be structured in a way to help you meet your financial goals and objectives.
Budgeting, Cash Flow and Debt Management
Do you need to manage your cash resources better?
If your income is close to your expenses, then it’s essential that you use some form of budgeting to ensure you stay on track.
If your income exceeds your expenses, then budgeting will enable you to better utilise the excess and look at allocating a portion towards a Wealth Accumulation strategy .
Debt Management is equally important. We can assist you with providing strategic advice to ensure you are managing your repayment requirements. Whilst we do not provide credit services, it is important to regularly review your loans to ensure that the structure is correct and to make sure you get competitive rates and the best long term result. We can refer you to a mortgage broker who can review your loan.
Pre & Post Retirement Planning
At Lumen Financial Strategists, we strongly believe that preparing for retirement in an orderly and measured way always provides clients with better lifestyle and financial outcomes in retirement.
Although everybody’s circumstances are different, essentially Lumen’s retirement strategies transition Clients’ from their working life through to retirement and continue well into retirement. This requires a detailed knowledge of our clients’ financial and lifestyle goals and objectives, their estate planning needs, and aged care wishes.
At Lumen, we use our understanding of the tax, super and Centrelink systems with the aim of providing retired Clients with as much tax free income as possible whilst also maximising Centrelink benefits wherever possible, and providing peace of mind that all their lifestyle and financial matters be arranged to provide a comfortable and stress free retirement.
Most of us one day will be faced with making decisions on Aged Care either for our self or family members. Although there is excellent information available from Government Websites (‘myAgedCare’ for example), most find it very difficult to navigate through the process and are concerned if they do fully understand the options available and the financial impact.
Often families struggle with making a choice on how to meet the financial commitment of $350,000 to $550,000 for the payment of the Refundable Accommodation Deposit (amount depends upon facility and room type); what to do with the Family home – sell or keep and rent; the impact on the Aged Pension; and financial impact on cash flow to meet fees for the Care services.
The good news is there are options available!
If you want peace of mind that the decisions you make either for yourself or a family member provide the best possible financial and lifestyle/care outcomes, it would be worth contacting Lumen. Nino Matkovic is an Accredited Aged Care Professional and will provide the information and guidance to give you confidence in understanding all the options available.
Here we look at which of your assets go through your Will and which assets will not. So first we need to understand how your assets are owned as this will determine how they are treated on your death. We can assist you with preparing an estate planning strategy which includes matters such as Wills, powers of attorney, and binding death nominations. There are many issues to discuss to ensure that your wishes will be conveyed. We can assist you with liaising with your Estate Planning Lawyers who will prepare all necessary documents including your Will.