News & Articles: Financial Planning

Stay up to date with the latest news and happenings with the Lifetime blog. A library of thought-provoking articles to inform and enlighten on all things loans, insurance, investments and planning. 

What do travel and retirement planning have in common? At first glance not much, however, whilst visiting the UK recently I was reminded of this saying at the London Tube stations – “mind the gap”. Most visitors to London have heard the words “mind the gap” when travelling on the tube.

With a very saddened heart we are sharing this story on behalf of Raewyn Thomas, our Mortgage Adviser from the Wellington office. Raewyn has been delivered the most devastating news possible, that she has lung cancer and its terminal with a very shortened life expectancy. 

This is Rae’s story that we are sharing with her permission.

When we talk about retirement planning most people think about the financial side of retirement. While this is a very important part of retirement planning I believe it is only part of the bigger picture; I prefer to take a more holistic approach with clients.

Go to school, get a job, work hard, retire at 65 and enjoy your golden years. That’s how it is supposed to go right? Well not necessarily according to a new and exciting global trend.

My last article was written about teaching your ‘young’ kids about money and that was well received by our readers so I thought I would continue down the financial education path and focus on what we need to teach our ‘young adults’ about money.

I have always found having check lists helpful so hopefully this will help those young adults heading on their OE, graduating and leaving home and possibly also for the parents or grandparents who are helping coach these young New Zealanders from the side-lines.

At Lifetime we understand the impact that these health situations can have on you both emotionally and financially. Your Adviser can be that person who can be there to reassure you especially if you hold insurance policies; they often cover more situations than you think.

As a home owner myself, the interest rates changes offered by the banks will often grab my attention. In my role here at Lifetime as a Home Loan Adviser, I work with people from all walks of life who are trying to buy their first home. Most people have to overcome the obstacle of saving a decent deposit and KiwiSaver comes to the rescue for a number of people.

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.

Paying your mortgage before you reach retirement age is the ultimate milestone for many Kiwis. But could your net worth be higher and your home loan repaid sooner, if you re-invest the equity in your home elsewhere instead? Home loan adviser Christine Hazeldine considers the options.

I decided when my boys were young that I would teach them both about money and investing. I opened KiwiSaver accounts for them when they were only months old. They also have non-KiwiSaver investment accounts to help fund the cost of university. My wife and I add to the accounts when we can and so do the boy's Grandparents.

KiwiSaver is a long-term investment scheme that the government has put in place to help Kiwis save for retirement. Joining KiwiSaver is voluntary and currently, more than 2.7 million Kiwis belong to the scheme.

Albert Einstein famously said, “compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world, those who understand this, earn it… those that don’t, pay it.”  The simple truth of compounding returns is the most important thing that matters for the long-term investor. Yet in today’s world we are consistently bombarded with distractions, become pre-occupied with other things, and we forget this simple truth.

Buying your first home is undoubtedly one of the biggest financial steps you can take, but not completely out of reach for the millennial generation, writes Josh Martin.

Paying for trauma cover might seem like an avoidable expense, but it can prove vital to safeguarding your financial standing should the worst happen, says Lifetime financial adviser Nathaniel Byers.

OPINION: Starting a family can be one of the most rewarding milestones a couple can experience. And one of the most stressful.

Planning for your first child might seem like a daunting and overwhelming task, but managing your finances need not be when you have a good idea of what to expect and how to budget around it.

The lessons you teach them now can significantly impact your children once they leave home, writes Lifetime financial adviser Matt Wenborn.

The support of an expert financial adviser can make a real difference to your financial health. Lifetime’s Emily Wheatley advises on the four most important questions you should ask your adviser.

Happy New Year to all and I hope that you all had a wonderful and peaceful holiday season. As I noted in my recent quarterly performance report, we remain optimistic about the markets over the long-term but have a cautious short-term outlook as we expect volatility to remain with us for the foreseeable future.

OPINION: It’s easy to confuse the holiday spirit with excessive spending.

OPINION:  As millennials, there’s often a gap between what we think will make us financially free versus what actually does. My story is testament to that.

By 23, I was working full-time running a business, studying full-time at university, and proudly took out a loan for my first home in a bid to grow my wealth and ultimately gain financial freedom. 

Setting clear money goals as a couple can pay real ‘dividends’ for both your bank account and relationship. Lifetime financial adviser Chané Berghorst explains what you need to consider when drawing up a shared plan. 

OPINION: For a woman, your forties can be the most defining and lucrative decade – especially when it comes to finances. Taking the right steps can improve your financial standing and set yourself up for the years ahead.

One of the benefits of being a long-term investor is that time is on your side! Long-term investors can skip over the short-term noise and just focus on achieving their long-term goals, (i.e. retirement savings). Short-term volatility is usually just a distraction.

If you’re keen to get the best out of your KiwiSaver Investment take heed of these expert tips from financial adviser Ian Stewart.

It is the Custodian’s job to safeguard your assets and hold them in bare trust for your benefit. This means that if there are any financial problems with the Fund Manager, your investments are ring-fenced in a separate legal entity.

OPINION: A mortgage tends to be the single biggest expense most home owners face, and what most of us don’t realise is that it can often provide the biggest opportunity for cost saving.

One of the fundamentals of investing is the time value of money. If you make an investment with your capital, you need to be compensated for the use of your money. Generally speaking, the longer the investment term the higher the return.

OPINION: Whether it’s a bach at the beach, house in the suburbs or small apartment in the city, the prospect of owning an investment property has long been part of the Kiwi dream.

According to Statistics New Zealand, residential property now accounts for 32 per cent of all Kiwis’ investments (as at March 2017) – making it the highest share of investment New Zealand has seen in 45 years. This comes despite concerns about primary residential home ownership levels. 

by Lifetime in Financial Planning

Smart business owners are now leaning on specialist advisers to negotiate improved banking structures. But exactly what does this service entail? Lifetime’s Financial Advisers Neville Whitworth and Richard Craven share tips on how your business, in certain instances, could save tens of thousands of dollars a year.

by Lifetime in Financial Planning, KiwiSaver

Research has shown, time and time again, that Kiwis are more likely to get their Wills set up after a life changing event. From getting married to having your first child or buying a house, these are the occasions that often prompt us to think about the future. Think these are the only reasons to get a Will? Find out why you might just want to consider protecting your future now.

The right insurance can be the answer to navigating the uncertain seas ahead.  But what exactly should business owners do to get the most bang for their buck? 

In psychology (the science of mind and behaviour) and decision theory, loss aversion refers to people’s tendency to prefer avoiding losses rather than acquiring equivalent gains. Some studies have suggested that loss aversion is twice as powerful, psychologically, as gains.

OPINION: Have you ever stopped to consider just how much you will earn during your working life?  

If you have a few minutes it really is quite useful to do - even if you’re not a number cruncher. All you need is your current gross annual income and how long a period you plan to stay in the workforce.

Money often appears to be a taboo subject in relationships, it can be the catalyst for unhealthy discussions and frequently blamed for fractured partnerships. What if both parties could sit and make a Financial plan for their joint goals assisted with the help of a Financial Adviser?

Make it your year to get your finances in order and use your money goals to guide through the next twelve months. Lifetime financial adviser Allan McNaughton reveals the most beneficial resolutions to make.

The end of the year is the perfect time to take stock of your financial situation and plan for greater success in the year to come. Each year I set aside time to review my current financial portfolio and map out my next steps in becoming more financially fit. Whether you want to tackle your debt or start building a wealth portfolio, it’s never too late to start improving your financial bottom line.

When you analyse the habits of those considered financially successful, you start to see trends in their everyday behaviour, Julian Lingard says.

1. They keep learning

Once they’ve identified areas in which they want to gain wealth, they start educating themselves in those fields.

Invest in your self-knowledge by reading the relevant books, following the right bloggers and spokespeople, and keeping up to date with policy changes in the news. A lot of websites in New Zealand even send daily or weekly updates to your mailbox. There are tons of resources out there (although it’s important to first check their credibility) that will help educate your financial decisions.

Looking at some recent research, I found a study that outlined that women in the EU receive 40% less in pension payments than men do. What alarmed me with this is that this is a much bigger gap than the often talked about gender pay gap, but it is the gender pay gap that is the main cause for the pension pay gap in Europe. 

Many first-time home buyers, often younger people, are finding it difficult to get their first mortgage. For many of you, this will be affecting your nearest and dearest, and it’s you, as family, they’re looking to for assistance. Lifetime’s Financial Adviser Robbie Crawford has a few tips (or mortgage hacks) for those hoping to give their loved ones a helping hand onto the property market.

With most banks requiring a 20 percent deposit to obtain a home loan, raising the initial capital can be the most difficult part for many first-time buyers, here’s how you can help.

Lifetime Group is hardly recognisable from the organisation it was 12 months ago. With a completely refreshed management team, ambitious new strategic direction and an industry first training platform, Lifetime’s new world order is now well in play.