Most people who belong to the Sandwich Generation undergo more stress than any other age group. At times, their retirement and other wealth-building plans for the future have to be put on hold to support their children and their ageing parents. That’s why 1 in 3 older working Australians expect to retire with a mortgage and nearly half with some kind of debt.
Retiring with debt defeats the entire purpose of superannuation, especially when your super savings are used to pay off that debt. The challenge now for 1.5 million middle-aged Australians is to dedicate some time and resources for themselves so they may reach their own financial goals.
What is the Sandwich Generation?
The Sandwich Generation typically consists of individuals between the ages of 40 and 60. This group is sandwiched between their obligation to support their growing children and ageing parents–hence its’ name.
It’s stressful enough for the sandwich generation having to manage their own personal finances and save for their own retirement. On top of all that, they also have to look after their children and parents’ financial needs, making this endeavour nearly impossible.
Being stuck in this circumstance can be emotionally and financially overwhelming. Luckily, there are numerous ways to cope with the stress and manage all the obligations to make everything a bit more convenient.
The Benefits of Having a Financial Planner
Seeking help from a financial planner early on will be advantageous for middle-aged Australians, says Michelle Tate-Lovery of Unified Financial Services. With their help, Australians can take care of their current financial obligations without having to sacrifice their plans in life.
A financial planner can help the Sandwich Generation in two ways. First, they can make sure that debt levels are under control. This way, they won’t have to worry about retiring with debt. At the same time, the financial planner can make sure that Australians stuck in the Sandwich Generation are accumulating money for their future through the superannuation system.
The minimum amount that Australians must pay is called the super guarantee. It is currently 9.5% of an employee’s earnings. That means those who earn $250,000 a year don’t have to contribute anything more. However, if they earn less than that, they should consider making additional contributions to guarantee a more financially-secure future. They can do that by transferring money from their bank accounts to their superannuation.
Now that the system is limiting the amount of money that people can add to their super fund, it’s more important than ever to start contributing early. However, putting away too much too soon isn’t always a wise idea as well. That’s because Australians won’t be able to use that money until they are in their 60s. These are some of the things that a financial planner can inform the Sandwich Generation to lessen their burden a bit. With the right information and using the right strategies, many middle-aged Australians should be empowered to take care of their finances, now and for their future.
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