Current news from our news service

Hot Issues
spacer
Debate heats up around $10k cash ban bill
spacer
There’s still time to move to Single Touch Payroll (STP)
spacer
Real Time World Population Growth - Wow!!
spacer
ATO audits continue to target Lifestyle assets
spacer
Property deduction errors down to ‘lack of understanding’: ATO
spacer
Data can be great stuff! - Australia
spacer
GST refunds for returned imported goods
spacer
14k employers, $230m in super: Financial Services Minister defends proposed SG amnesty
spacer
Bushfires 2019–20 (ATO)
spacer
Accounting profession responds to bushfire crisis
spacer
Helping your business survive a natural disaster - ATO
spacer
Single Touch Payroll (STP) – now ensure super is paid on time.
spacer
Beware of Australian Taxation Office (ATO) impersonation scams
spacer
Australia by the Numbers
spacer
‘Visible, valued and owned’: ATO outlines super priorities for new year
spacer
Introductory Rates & Interest Free Periods
spacer
Our Advent calendar for 2019
spacer
Tax Office sounds warning on 8 types of super schemes
spacer
Don’t forget sharing economy income
spacer
Impress your friends with your knowledge!!
spacer
Salary sacrificing and the superannuation guarantee
spacer
Why so much super “stuff” this year?
spacer
Reverse Mortgage?
spacer
How the gig economy could create hidden tax issues for contractors and employers
spacer
15,000 tip-offs as ATO black economy hotline rings hot
spacer
What happens when interest rates hit the floor?
spacer
Director Penalty Notices (DPN)
Article archive
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2019
spacer
Quarter 3 July - September 2019
spacer
Quarter 2 April - June 2019
spacer
Quarter 1 January - March 2019
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2018
spacer
Quarter 3 July - September 2018
spacer
Quarter 2 April - June 2018
spacer
Quarter 1 January - March 2018
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2017
spacer
Quarter 3 July - September 2017
spacer
Quarter 2 April - June 2017
spacer
Quarter 1 January - March 2017
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2016
spacer
Quarter 3 July - September 2016
spacer
Quarter 2 April - June 2016
spacer
Quarter 1 January - March 2016
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2015
spacer
Quarter 3 July - September 2015
spacer
Quarter 2 April - June 2015
spacer
Quarter 1 January - March 2015
spacer
Quarter 4 October - December 2014
Quarter 2 of, 2016 archive
spacer
Reminder – Salary and Wages PAYG Shortfall
spacer
$20,000 Asset Write Off Reminder
spacer
Danger for buyers of Australian property of $2 million plus
spacer
Budget 2016-17
spacer
FBT Time
spacer
Fringe Benefits Tax – Company Holiday Home
spacer
Fringe Benefits Tax – Nil
spacer
Estate Planning - early inheritance
spacer
ATO issues SMSF tax warning
spacer
ATO seeks to dispel LRBA panic
spacer
Financial tools your family and friends can use.
spacer
$20,000 Asset Write Off Reminder
spacer
Tax office issues warning on imminent rule change
spacer
Age Pension means-test prevents rational decision-making
spacer
Locking Up Bank Accounts
spacer
ATO figures show property investors missing out on tax breaks
Age Pension means-test prevents rational decision-making

 

Rules exempting the family home from the Age Pension means test are preventing retirees from make rational housing decision, the Actuaries Institute believes.

     

The institute's green paper, ‘Unlocking Housing Wealth — options to meet retirement needs', reported that Australian retirees had the second lowest income levels of OECD countries.

Speaking to Money Management, Catherine Nance, the convenor of the Actuaries Institute's working group who published the green paper, called on the Government to break down barriers preventing people from accessing equity from their homes in retirement.

"The major stop on them making decisions is the Age Pension means test, because the house being the only exempt asset, if you want to sell it and go into a smaller place or an independent living unit, or if you want to access it through a financial product like a reverse mortgage, anything you release from your home potentially gets caught up in the Age Pension means test and can reduce the Age Pension you're getting," she said.

"We felt there was a case to be made for saying rather than just forcing people to stay in their homes beyond the time when it's appropriate, why don't we allow a partial protection up to a certain limit from the Age Pension means testing for amounts accessed by older people when they sell down or access equity through their house?"

Nance also suggested that a "first time buyers" style exemption from stamp duty would also encourage retirees to access equity from their homes, and give them "a better quality of life".

"At that point in age a lot of people don't want to just pay $30,000 to the state government in stamp duty, which is like a dead tax, simply to move to a slightly smaller house, so we feel there is a case for looking at stamp duty relief for older people," she said.

Homesafe Solutions managing director, Peter Szabo, welcomed the Actuaries Institute papers, describing the issues as the "elephant in the room".

"The family home is quite literally the elephant in the room and government can no longer ignore the issue with Australia having the highest proportion of home ownership amongst seniors in the developed world," he said.

"Assisting senior Australians to address the very real challenges of funding their lives in retirement needs to be acknowledged as a priority and decision makers must support options to allow retirees access to the equity in their homes."

 

by Nicholas O'Donoghue
17 March 2016
moneymanagement.com.au

site By PlannerWeb