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Financial Tips

Get your finances under control and plan for the future

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Do you want to get your finances under control and plan for the future? Check out some tips from our Financial Planning partner Bridges to get started.

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With the cost of living going up each year, it’s hard to imagine how much you’ll need for your retirement.

But, the latest figures suggest that if you’re aiming for a comfortable lifestyle in retirement you’ll need to save about $510,000 for a couple or $430,000 for a single person1. And, it would be even more if you want to enjoy some of the finer things in life.

So what will this amount afford you in retirement?

To find out, enter the Bridges Retirement Lab at, see how you measure up and whether you’re on track to live the retirement you want.

What’s the Bridges Retirement Lab?

The Bridges Retirement Lab is an online tool that lets you picture your lifestyle in retirement and select the level of comfort you envisage for your home, food, leisure, transport and health care.

You can then see if your savings, super and investment strategy measure up to meet the retirement lifestyle you want, view and download your results and see how financial advice can help you achieve your retirement goals.

Step 1 – Picture your lifestyle

Select the level of comfort you envisage for your home, food, leisure, transport and health care.

This step explains the different comfort levels and their associated goods or services. For instance, do you want to enjoy regular holidays? Do you want to update the kitchen or bathroom or your entire house? Eat out or entertain family and friends at home? How about private health insurance and maintaining a car?

Based on your selections, you’ll be placed on a lifestyle scale from low (modest) to high (comfortable plus)

Step 2 – Test how you measure up

See if your savings, super and investment strategy measure up to meet the retirement lifestyle you want. Roll up your sleeves, test out different scenarios and make the Bridges Retirement Lab work for you.

Budgets for three retirement standards

Aged Pension Single - $427.15 Couple - $644.00

Modest* Single - $450.09 Couple - $647.57

Comfortable Single - $817.07 Couple - $1,119.31

*Source: ASFA retirement standard survey December quarter 2014. For more information and the latest figures visit the AFSA website

Step 3 – View and download your results

This steps allows you to view and download your personalised results including tips on how you could increase your retirement savings and how a financial planner can help.

Financial advice makes a difference

To discuss and understand what the results of the Bridges Retirement Lab mean for you, make an appointment with a Bridges financial planner.

We have an established alliance with Bridges, to provide our customers with financial advice. In fact, Bridges has been helping Australians prepare for their retirement for over 25 years.

A Bridges financial planner will develop a plan specifically for you; one that’s tailored to your needs and circumstances, to help you achieve your goals, both in the lead up to retirement and during retirement.

To make an appointment with a Bridges financial planner, call us on 1300 360 744. The initial consultation is complimentary and obligation free.

Visit the bridges retirement lab


1 Source: ASFA retirement standard December quarter 2014. Assumes receipt of part age pension.

Do you want to increase the value of your total pay packet, reduce your income tax, boost your super savings and take advantage of other tax-effective benefits? Well, with a salary sacrifice strategy maybe you can.

More and more employers are now allowing their staff to take their remuneration as a package of cash and certain other employee benefits that are concessionally taxed, such as superannuation contributions.

This is called salary packaging or salary sacrifice because you are sacrificing (doing without) a proportion of your take-home salary in order to gain a greater benefit. You may be able to reduce your tax and/or gain valuable benefits.

A Bridges financial planner can help you understand which benefits provide a tax advantage and which do not, and how your total income and marginal tax rate will affect your package.

A Bridges financial planner can provide advice about packaging your salary to make it go further. Call us today on 1300 360 744 to make an apoointment to speak to a Bridges financial planner. Your initial consultation is complimentary and obligation-free. 

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Do you know how many super funds you have?

It’s important to keep track of your super, after all, it’s your money for your retirement, but if you don’t know where your super is, you’re not alone. In fact, the Australian Taxation office estimates lost super to be worth around $16.9 billion.1

By tracking down and consolidating your super accounts, you will save on multiple sets of administration fees. Over the years, this could add up to thousands of dollars. However, before you go ahead and consolidate your super there are some things you should consider such as:

  • whether any of your super funds include life insurance, income protection insurance or other personal insurance
  • whether it’s a good time to sell down your investments within your super fund
  • how the fees and charges compare in all your super funds.

A Bridges financial planner is not limited to any one superannuation provider and can provide you with advice on a range of superannuation funds. They can help you determine the most cost effective and appropriate fund for your specific needs.

So why not get in touch today and get on track for a successful retirement? Call us today on 1300 360 744 to make an appointment to speak with a Bridges Financial Planner.  Your initial consultation is complimentary and obligation-free.  

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1 Source ATO 2012-13

Bridges Financial Services Pty Limited (Bridges). ABN 60 003 474 977. ASX participant. AFSL No 240837. This is general advice only and has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situation and needs. Before making an investment decision based on this information, you should assess your own circumstances or consult a financial planner. In referring customers to Bridges, Southern Cross Credit Union Ltd does not accept liability or responsibility of any act or omission or advice provided by Bridges or its authorised representatives. Part of the IOOF group.

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