The Financial Planning Association of Australia The Financial Planning Association of Australia

Super, save or splurge on property- what’s the best strategy for my family?


You’re travelling along nicely, two healthy incomes and an expanding family unit. You’ve turned 40 and you suddenly realise things aren’t looking as rosey as you thought.

We hear time and time again how important it is to focus on the now – and not worry so much about the future. Of course this has merit. But, when it comes to your family’s financial future, it’s critical that you seek high quality advice from a professional financial planner.

So, what can you do to secure your family’s financial future? Save more? Get more aggressive with super? Increase your gearing? Pay down the mortgage? Splurge on property investment?

If you’re feeling confused or financially trapped, seeking professional help is your first step to financial freedom. A good financial planner will help you clarify your goals and implement a financial plan to get the ball rolling. What’s more, they can coach you on financial fitness, so you always feel in control and ready to tackle anything.

Need a plan? Here are five key considerations:

  1. Your priorities – Your priorities are unique to you, and these will depend on your dreams, vision and your current position. It’s not always possible to achieve everything at once. Your financial planner can help you clarify what’s most important – and go from there. It could be that you have no children; therefore long-term financial freedom is a priority. Or, it might be that you want to spend more time with your family. These drivers will help shape your financial plan.
  2. Your cash flow position – A financial planner will ensure you don’t over-commit, whatever direction you take. How much are you able to save at this current time? How much buffer do you have if you or your spouse lost an income? Getting a clear picture on this will help determine how aggressive your strategy can be.
  3. Your tax position – If you’re considering purchasing a property or some shares, consider the name in which the investment is made – the tax implications could be significant. For example; an individual name vs joint names may attract a different tax treatment.
  4. The age of your children – If your children are already in tertiary education, you might wish to help them save for a deposit for their first home. If they’re still small, putting money aside for their university fees might be a more pressing desire. How quickly you need to access this money will determine what kind of strategy is best.
  5. Your retirement date – While it’s good to plan early for retirement, if retirement is still 25 years away, you might consider allocating your available resources towards property as a nest egg or for your children’s inheritance.

The best thing you can do right now, is find a planner near you, who can help clear up your confusion. For a financial planner to qualify as a member of the Financial Planning Association (FPA), they must meet minimum education and ethical standards.  This way, you can feel reassured that you’re seeking advice from someone you can trust.

Your family’s future matters.

by Jarryd Vinton CFP®