Australian women prepare for the end of the financial year

Financial planning and end of financial year. The financial year ends on June 30 – make sure your finances are in order to maximise tax and other entitlements.

Last week we talked about the 2011 Westpac Women’s Financial Health Report – the results of which weren’t too positive regarding Australian women and their attitudes toward their own future financial security.

And while the prevailing trend seems to be toward a limited amount of financial planning and concern for the level of wealth that women will have access to in retirement, there is still time for you to subvert the alleged stereotype and prepare for the end of the financial year and maximise your super.

Getting the most out of your money this year will depend on how you approach the end of the tax period for 2011-12 – remember, any entitlements on super or tax need to be finalised before June 30.

If you put money away in a superannuation fund before June 30 you might be eligible to receive a tax-offset, or perhaps a government co-contribution.

Consider putting super payments into a fund if you earn less than $61,920 before tax – you can take advantage of the government’s co-contribution if you make an after-tax contribution to a designated fund.

Also, if you deposit into your partner’s superannuation fund and they are not working or they receive a low income, you might be able to get a tax-offset of up to $540.

You can get more information about these co-contributions and offsets from your financial advisor or the Australian Tax Office.

For those women who are self-employed, running their own business or working as contractors, there may be tax benefits for you to take advantage of if you contribute to your own super.

By putting aside some of your pre-tax salary for a super contribution, you will lock in a special taxation rate of 15 per cent – which could be lower than your top tax rate. There is a limit as to how much you can put into super each year using this ‘salary sacrifice’ method, however.

Talking with a financial planner can help you to set your monetary goals for the end of the tax year on a direct and focused course.

A professional with specific industry knowledge will be well-placed to offer advice and guide your through the process of making a retirement income strategy.

ipac is one of Australia’s largest financial advisory firms and has offices based across the country. A wholly-owned subsidiary of the AMP Group, ipac specialises in research and financial advice that helps clients lead happier, more fulfilling lives.

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