This blogpost is PART TWO, of our series on Financial Advice. Read on to learn all about the phone-based financial advice options available to you as a Christian Super member, many of which are provided free of charge.
- PART ONE: Self-Serve Financial Advice Options
- PART TWO: Phone-Based Financial Advice Options
- PART THREE: The Value of Financial Advice and How a Full-Service Advisor Can Help
- PART FOUR: How to choose a Financial Advisor
Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could all be experts at everything?
We firmly believe that all Christians should have a basic understanding of how money works, and the ability to make and manage a household budget. Many of our members are growing in their knowledge of superannuation, and their understanding of Biblical views on money, with good stewardship as our measuring stick.
We recognise, however, that the legislation surrounding superannuation, taxes, investment, and retirement planning is often beyond the comprehension of those who don’t work in the finance industry. We believe you can successfully navigate this complexity with the help of wise council, as espoused by King Solomon in Proverbs (15:22). We expect that many of you will achieve better financial outcomes in retirement if you receive some form of financial advice well before you retire, as well as actively engaging with your superannuation on a regular basis.
Phone-based intrafund advice
With so many options of how your Christian Super account can be adjusted to your needs, it can get quite overwhelming to know what is best for you. Link Advice, a Christian Super partner, is a leading financial education and advice company, which strives to improve the financial well-being of everyday Australians. We have partnered with Link Advice to serve you, our members, by providing intrafund advice. ‘Intrafund’ (meaning ‘within fund’) advice, relates only to optimising your Christian Super account.
While this advice is personal advice, which means it does consider your personal circumstances, the advice is limited to exploring how your Christian Super account can best serve your needs. This advice service is provided free of charge to all Christian Super members.
Link Advice can advise you on choosing the investment option which may be best suited to you, considering your age and life stage. They can help with choosing an investment option for both our accumulation members and our pension members.
Have you considered your insurance needs, depending on your assets, liabilities, and life stage (including family responsibilities)? Link Advice can give advice regarding the level of insurance cover you have as a fund member, and what level of cover may be suitable for you.
Do you have extra funds available for investment / savings, for example, have you recently paid off your home or ceased other significant expenses such as school fees? Link Advice can advise you on a contribution strategy. They can advise on co-contribution and salary sacrifice arrangements. Based on your income, they can advise on the optimal mix of pre-tax and after-tax contributions.
If you are not comfortable using our self-serve advice tool, SmartAdvice (or who have used it but wish to take the next step), you may consider a Superannuation Health Check or a (pre) Retirement Health Check. Link Advice can have a conversation which involves setting some goals around what you would like to achieve and possibly contribute into your super account; helping you to make the most of your superannuation before retiring. As this is intrafund advice, the conversation relates only to your Christian Super account. While Link Advice will provide personal financial advice on the issue identified as most pressing, you may receive an ‘action list’ following this conversation for matters which are best referred to another professional, such as will, estate and other end-of-life documents.
Low cost, phone-based financial advice
As well as providing intrafund advice, Link Advice can also assist with other advice needs at a low, fixed cost, deductible from your Christian Super account. These options are NEW, and we are excited to make this service available to our members who may have previously not considered getting this sort of advice due to the cost.
- Link Advice can offer simple Retirement Plan advice using Christian Super’s account-based pension. This is for those immediately approaching or in retirement with superannuation as their main investment (in addition to their family home, if applicable). This simple retirement plan advice is best suited to those who are likely to receive the full age pension. Link Advice can advise over the phone on setting up a pension, provide a written Statement of Advice outlining steps to be taken, and will follow up to help with implementation.
- For members aged 56 and above, Link Advice can offer simple Transition to Retirement (TTR) advice. Advice will be given over the phone on setting up a pension, a written Statement of Advice will be provided, and a follow up call is available to help with implementation. A TTR pension can assist you to either reduce your working hours by supplementing your income or maximise your retirement savings while continuing to work the same hours. Link Advice are likely to be able to advise on a TTR pension if there will be minimal change to your taxable income, and no effect on your Centrelink entitlements.
Each of these advice pieces is substantial in terms of time and cost. Christian Super will pay a portion of the advice fees, and interested members are required to make a co-payment of $295 to access these advice services. This is a one-off fee for preparation of the Statement of Advice, with no ongoing fees. The co-payment is per member, not per couple if both require this advice. The co-payment will not be charged if Link Advice refer you on to comprehensive advice. This co-payment can be deducted from your superannuation account.
If you have substantial assets outside of your superannuation apart from your family home, and/or if you have significant debt, Link Advice is unlikely to be able to assist with setting up a pension as your needs are more complex. Link Advice are limited to intrafund advice, while a comprehensive advisor will be able to consider whether it is better to pay off debts, as well as fully incorporating details of your spouse’s finances.
Beyond phone-based advice
The low-cost phone-based advice provided through Link Advice is best suited to those with relatively simple affairs, as complex situations are likely to be best handled face-to-face with a comprehensive financial advisor. This includes those who have blended family arrangements, significant redundancy payments, business or trust structures, and property or other investment portfolios.
As Link Advice only provides intrafund advice (limited to Christian Super), members with high account balances over $300k may also benefit from comprehensive advice to assist in maximising pension eligibility.
Link Advice may refer you to comprehensive advice when they feel this is in your best interest.
Our Member Care Team is here to help you with questions you may have around self serve financial advice.
Phone: 1300 360 907
9:00am – 6:00pm (AEDT) Monday to Friday
Please note that the information contained in this post is a summary and general in nature. It does not take into account the personal objectives, financial situation or specific needs of individual members. We strongly recommend that you refer to our Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Investment Guide for the full terms and conditions and obtain professional financial advice to determine the appropriateness of the information, taking into account your own personal circumstances.