BT Financial Group (BTFG) has seen a 50 per cent surge around queries relating to superannuation matters since the same time last year, according to its Advice Technical team.
BTFG’s Head of Financial Literacy and Advocacy, Bryan Ashenden said we’re seeing more inquiry than ever around superannuation; and it’s not surprising when you consider a lot of it has to do with the Federal Budget changes, which are the most significant since 2007.
“A confluence of factors including the Budget super changes, the maturation of our super system, our ageing demographic and ever increasing life expectancy have brought superannuation advice and specialisation to the fore. More advisers are seeking support around super and more advisers are providing super expertise generally.”
According to BTFG’s Advice Technical team superannuation is the leading area for advisers seeking technical legislative and strategic support in the June 2016 quarter.
“The spike in adviser inquiries around super, and specifically the Budget changes shows two things. First, advisers are acutely aware of what the pending changes are. Secondly, advisers are keen to engage with their clients around the coming legislative change to strategic advice, and how their clients will be impacted.
“It’s certainly worthwhile to assess what strategies can be put in place now, prior to the changes taking effect. And also, to look at the longer term to ensure these changes are factored into your clients’ plans,” Mr Ashenden said.
Bryan’s 3 tips for client conversations around super:
- Assume the changes will happen. Whilst there has been considerable speculation about possible changes to the announcement made on Budget night, it is better to plan and talk with clients on the assumption the announcements will be enacted in their current form. Any changes are likely to be for the benefit of clients, and you be better off talking to possible benefits down the track rather than having to change tact because things didn’t turn out as good as you hoped they might.
- Super still remains super and one of the best investment vehicles available. Whilst the changes propose stricter limitations on how much can be contributed to the superannuation system, with a maximum 15% tax rate on earnings and the ability to withdraw tax free after age 60, it’s still important to look to maximise its use.
- Don’t sit back and wait for July 2017. With most of the changes not due to take effect until 1 July 2017, there may be a natural human tendency to sit back and not deal to the new rules until they are operational. However, this would be a disservice to clients as there are many things to consider and plan for within the year that can put clients in the best position for when the new rules do take effect.
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Information is current as at 24/08/2016.