Christmas ‘financial housekeeping’
When was the last time you and your family sat down and had a chat? You know….a real chat….one about all the nitty gritty issues that families face?
For many families, Christmas is a rare opportunity for the whole clan to gather, reflect and plan for the future.
So if you’re overdue for a family ‘housekeeping’ session, now is the time to schedule one in.
The Big Chat
What exactly should you include in The Big Chat? The topics will vary from family to family, depending on the age of your children, your own age, the age of your parents and your financial situation.
But some of the topics you might like to consider include:
Do you have a will? Does it reflect your current wishes (including who you have nominated executor and Enduring Power of Attorney)? Have you married recently – or divorced? Do your adult children have a will – and know where your will is kept? If you need to update or organise new wills, pencil in an appointment with your solicitor in the New Year.
Your life in a folder
If you died suddenly tomorrow, would your spouse or children know what to do? Do they know what bank and super fund you’re with? Do you have shares or other investments? What about life insurance? Having a folder that contains your will and other important financial information could be a huge help for your family in the event of your sudden death. If you’re a single parent, this is even more critical. Naturally, this folder should be kept in a safe place (your bank, lawyer, in a safe or with a trusted family member). But discuss the folder, and let your partner and/or children know where and how to access it.
Future living arrangements for aging parents is a topic best shared as a family. How are your parents travelling emotionally, physically and mentally? What are their wishes moving forward? Do they have plans to downsize their home? Is it time to start gathering information about new housing options or residential care? At the very least, is it time to start conversations with them about their future?
Did you know that Australia leads the world for successful organ and tissue transplants – and that nine out of 10 families uphold a person’s decision to donate when that person is a registered organ donor?* Discuss as a family everyone’s wishes regarding organ donation – and make a date to register if you wish to become a donor.
Advance Care Directives
An Advance Care Directive empowers you to make clear legal arrangements for your future health care, end of life, preferred living arrangements and other personal matters. Search for Advance Care Directives at sa.gov to learn more.
If your teenage children are planning a ‘gap’ year of travel in the New Year, now is the time to ensure they have their vaccinations and travel and health insurance in order. And don’t forget to check their passport is valid!
If your teens are becoming adults, and they’re living at home, maybe you need to have a chat about them contributing to the household bills with board. Even if you put the board in a separate account, and let it build up towards a future house deposit, paying board is a good exercise in financial education.
The New Year is an ideal time to get you and your family’s financial strategy in order. To learn more about how we can help you and your family plan for a financially healthy future, at MBA Financial Strategists simply Contact Us via email or phone.
*Source: Donate Life – Australian Government Organ and Tissue Authority https://donatelife.gov.au
MBA Financial Strategists Pty Ltd ABN 13 008 285 756 is an Authorised Representative and Credit Representative of AMP Financial Planning Pty Limited, Australian Financial Services Licensee and Australian Credit Licensee. This article contains information that is general in nature. It does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. You need to consider your financial situation and needs before making any decisions based on this information. If you decide to purchase or vary a financial product, your financial adviser, AMP Financial Planning Pty Limited, Tel: 131 267 and other companies within the AMP Group may receive fees and other benefits. The fees will be a dollar amount and/or a percentage of either the premium you pay or the value of your investments. Please contact us if you want more information.