Early Advice Made All The Difference

Margaret was 21 when she married Graham. She was working as a sales assistant in a large department store when they decided to start a family.

As her pregnancy advanced Margaret gave up work and Graham, a warehouse fork-lift driver, took a second job to make up the shortfall in their income. He was a hard worker and fast learner which prompted his boss to promote Graham to Warehouse Manager a few months later.

In the years after their first son was born, two more babies arrived – another boy and a girl. Once the children were settled at school, Margaret returned to part-time work.

Soon after they’d married, Graham engaged a financial planner (Sandra) to structure an insurance & investments strategy and a financial plan to secure their financial future. With Sandra's ongoing guidance, the young couple was able to afford annual holidays, private school fees and put aside cash for unexpected events.

Years passed and the children grew up and left home. Graham was now a partner in the warehousing business and earning a good income. So when Margaret turned 50, she decided to take early retirement. They were living comfortably on Graham’s salary when he suffered a heart-attack. He was rushed to hospital but died shortly after.

Margaret knew that Graham had insurance policies and that there were investments and superannuation, but other than relying on their bank account balance to pay household bills, she’d had little other involvement; happily leaving that to Graham and their financial planner Sandra.

Over the years, Sandra had become a family friend, and it was to her that Margaret now turned. Sandra took care of the insurance claims and organised for Graham’s superannuation to be paid out. She recommended Margaret pay off the remainder of the mortgage.

After considering insurances, superannuation and the investment portfolio, Margaret discovered that due to the financial advice over the years, she was now adequately funded for retirement. But she had no idea what to do with her money. She didn’t know what the tax implications would be and was worried about having a regular income sufficient to meet all her expenses.

Sandra’s next task was to define Margaret’s income needs and level of risk tolerance and need for liquidity. She addressed Margaret’s tax situation and structured a portfolio to provide a tax-effective income stream for her to live off for the rest of her life in a way that the money would never run out, and keep up with the cost of living.

When Margaret turned 55, Sandra advised that her own superannuation was accessible. She reviewed her investments to maximise Margaret’s income potential and minimise her tax liability.

Margaret and Graham had dreamed of retiring at the beach so she sold the family home and bought a comfortable beach-side apartment. Downsizing freed additional cash so Margaret, now 65 and financially secure, asked Sandra to open investment accounts for each of her four grandchildren.

To celebrate her 70th birthday, Margaret decided to take a cruise with a dear friend. Sandra arranged a partial redemption from the most appropriate of her investments so she was able to holiday in style.

Although Margaret had been widowed unexpectedly, early planning and good advice enabled her to maintain an enjoyable lifestyle in retirement. Graham would definitely be resting in peace.