How do I know if I'm on track to fund the retirement of my dreams?

Rhyan has been working hard for many years, carving out a successful career that has enabled his family to enjoy a good lifestyle. At 52 he is coming to the end of the peak expense years, school fees are all but finished, the mortgage on the family home is nearly paid off. Rhyan and his partner Emily are now turning their attention to retirement. Rhyan has a sense that he’s a little behind the 8-ball as the focus has been elsewhere.

Rhyan’s priority is to ensure the way he and Emily live life doesn’t change all that much. If anything, they want to be able to enjoy the free time they will have by doing even more of what they enjoy as a couple. Rhyan has some super built up and Emily owns an investment property but the couple do not have a good understanding of what this will mean for them in the future.

Rhyan’s colleague and friend refers him to his financial adviser, who recently helped put a retirement plan in place. The main questions Rhyan and Emily have are:

  • Given our current assets, plus ongoing employee super contributions, if we continue to work through to age 60 what kind of monthly pension could we draw?
  • Currently we earn about $15,000 per month after tax, is this a good benchmark for our retirement income needs?
  • If there is a funding gap how can we make that up?
    • Should I be trying to contribute more to my superannuation, I’ve heard about salary sacrifice, can you explain that to us?
    • Given school fees etc are finished what’s the best way to use my surplus income to increase my retirement funding?
  • What other changes can we start to make that will positively influence our retirement?
  • Can you help me understand the impact of my extra savings over the next 8 years on my final retirement capital?
  • What if I decided to do some work between the ages of 60 and 65 to supplement my income, how would that effect things?

Having explored the above questions, Rhyan and Emily could really understand the value of engaging with an adviser, they became clients and Rhyan and Emily are now feeling much more confident that they will be able to maintain and enhance their lifestyle in retirement. Their journey has resulted in:

  • Understanding where they will be at age 60 if they merely maintain the status quo.
  • A precise knowledge of how much extra they need to save each month to meet their retirement goals.
  • A strategy to save in the most tax-efficient manner.
  • A sense of certainty and confidence in their ability to create a well-funded retirement.
  • A series of financial projections which help them understand the financial consequences of the different choices they can make; increased savings or retiring at 60 vs 65 for example.

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