5th May 2015
Asset thresholds to be lowered
Asset thresholds to be lowered

According to several news reports, senior government sources have confirmed that next week's budget will see changes to the pension assets test. These changes could see an estimated 200,000 part-pensioners’ entitlements trimmed under new figures. Several news sources are reporting this morning that the expected changes relate specifically to homeowners, who will see a lowering of the $1.15 million threshold, for assets excluding the family home, down to $820,000 for couples, and the $775,000 threshold reduced to around $550,000 for singles.

The assets test changes are expected to save the budget up to $2 billion, and, as a result, it is possible that the government may scrap the proposed changes to indexation of the pension put forward in the last budget. It has also been reported that the government is expected to adjust the tapering rate to protect pensioners with fewer financial assets.

Read more from www.theaustralian.com.au

Read more from www.dailytelegraph.com.au

Read more from www.9news.com.au

Read more from www.heraldsun.com.au

Opinion: Small steps to victory

It seems that the Federal Government has learned a lot in the past six months in power. A month after last year’s horror budget, the Abbott Government was hanging by a thread due to four controversial policies. Three of these policies have been thrown in the bin over the past six months, with just the changes to pension indexation remaining – but even that is expected to be cut this week.

The move to implement a small change to the assets test targeting the wealthiest of those on the part Age Pension who own a home and have assets of over $820,000 for a couple or $550,000 is hard for anyone to argue against. This may be the government’s first tightening of pension payments, but you can be assured that it won’t be the last. 

What do you think? Has the government gone about the changes to the assets test in the right way? Are you concerned that the rules may be tightened more significantly in the future? Do you have more faith in the Abbott government than you did 12 months ago? 





    COMMENTS

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    Dancer
    5th May 2015
    10:38am
    Sound policy and fair to all.
    Anonymous
    5th May 2015
    5:03pm
    Not really!!!! They are STILL not touching the real WEALTHY and are giving away OUR tax money to the likes of:

    Paying Glencore Xstrata $109 million to pollute.
    Paying BHP Billiton $93 million to pollute.
    Paying Peabody $58 million to pollute.
    Paying Rio Tinto $57 million to pollute.
    Paying Anglo American $49 million to pollute.

    Five really bad ways to spend public money in the Federal Budget… mainly FOREIGN mining companies that earn BILLIONS annually out of OUR resources! They:

    -cadge OUR tax money and put it in their pockets
    -take their humongous profits overseas
    -pay very little in taxes
    -pay very little in royalties
    -pay next to nothing in mining lease fees (even I could afford some of them)
    -employ less and less Australians, since Abbott's carte blanche on 457visas
    -utilise overseas contractors to supply most of their mining needs

    So…. tell me again how this government is finally getting it right!!@#$%***&^?????

    Agree with removing excesses and those rules that allow the rorting of the system BUT it seems their new budget cuts are merely window dressing and just hurt some of those that are okay but need a little help, just like the rest of us!

    Why not just STOP GIVING OUR TAX MONEY to FOREIGN MINING GIANTS who give absolutely NOTHING to Australia and are here simply to EXTRACT as much profits from this country as possible WITHOUT putting ANYTHING BACK.

    Sorry Drew but you seem desperate to squeeze SOMETHING from the hypocrisy of this abjectly substandard and (in my opinion) grossly (criminally so) inept government, just because you are a Liberal voter. This lot stink all the way through, no salvage possible. The beginning of the rot started with Howard bending over for the USA and Howard's need to keep idiots around him….. those same idiots are now running around under the control of a headless chook called Abbott.
    Grumpy
    5th May 2015
    6:49pm
    Right on Dancer.
    Personal entitlements are tightly means tested. How about applying the same principle to corporate welfare? e.g. Does BHP and Rio Tinto really need the tax break designed for small farmers i.e. diesel fuel rebate. Are they entitled to tax deductibility of interest originally intended to assist development of small business? Individuals do not have this benefit at all. Do private health insurance funds really need the $15Bn annual donation received as a premium subsidy for an industry which otherwise would probably have otherwise have gone out of business?
    When will this government learn to look for all the dots to be joined rather thabn only those they want to see?
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    10:47am
    Don't know why you included a "Read More" link to those wankers "The Australian", the scumbags won't let you read the article without subscribing ! AS IF !!!
    Sceptic
    5th May 2015
    12:43pm
    So Fearlessfly, you think that everything should be supplied to you free?
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    12:58pm
    Yes Sceptic... unfortunately our society is now one of "entitlement"...The "forever needy" are now encouraged by a confederacy of high moral ground crusaders to blame their circumstances on those who have got an education or trade, got a job, stuck at it over many decades and made something of their lives.
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    12:58pm
    I expect a link from a FREE website to an item featured on that FREE website to also be FREE to read. Fortunately the other 3 links go to freely readable articles.
    Sceptic
    5th May 2015
    1:28pm
    I guess that it is another Murdoch conspiracy against the left then, as when I click on The Australian link, it opens.
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    2:18pm
    Nope, still comes up with the "You've reached a Subscriber Only article" page. Using latest Chrome browser with cookies enabled.
    Sceptic
    5th May 2015
    2:53pm
    My browser is Explorer 11
    Aquarian
    5th May 2015
    4:12pm
    It seems that Microsoft owns The Australian !!!
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    4:29pm
    Well, that is interesting, I've just tried the link using IE 11 and get the same result - no access ! It would seem that Sceptic may be a preferred partner of The Australian website :-) Oh well, never mind, as an IT guru I was intrigued as to why the difference in access.
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    4:29pm
    Well, that is interesting, I've just tried the link using IE 11 and get the same result - no access ! It would seem that Sceptic may be a preferred partner of The Australian website :-) Oh well, never mind, as an IT guru I was intrigued as to why the difference in access.
    Anonymous
    5th May 2015
    5:29pm
    fearlessfly
    Sceptic is what you surmised, part of the propaganda machinations.

    I agree that all corporate media should be free, as enough money is made from advertising PLUS why should be PAY to get news and information that is CORPORATE (foreign) points of VIEW of what is happening in Australia and the world. Most of the content comes from the USA and reflects PURELY their country and their corporations point of view, even if it means supporting vicious dictatorships, such as Saudi Arabia who have had USA funding, training and weapons supplied to create ISIS who were used to 'create' false uprisings in Libya and Syria and are now STILL doing Saudi Arabia's bidding without much SERIOUS counterattack by the USA.

    Australia and Australians hear NOTHING of the DIRTY, MURDEROUS stuff that the USA and its allies are into. One example only - we are not told a lot about the USA's OFFICIAL Presidentially approved 'kill' list. That's right…. the USA sends drones into foreign sovereignties and murders people on this list, along with anyone that just happens to be standing near them (women and children included). The USA are NOT at war with these countries, they do NOT call on the International Courts to bring those they target for death, to a DEMOCRATIC legal process, whereby the USA is required to PROVE its case against those people…… NO, they simply MURDER them in their own country. REMEMBER of course that they consider ANYONE that they do NOT LIKE to be an enemy and therefore put on the official 'kill' list. Julian Assange an Australian who merely reported gross malfeasance and crimes by the USA govt, and had done nothing illegal in Australia OR the USA, is a contender for this list.
    Londongal
    5th May 2015
    10:47am
    So currently, the asset limit for a single home owner is $202,000 in order to receive the full pension - will this remain the same?
    Jacka
    5th May 2015
    10:47am
    once agan the present amounts are not a luxury people are receiving very little interest on that money. They can't make ends meet two and a half percent of 3 percent on a million dollars equites to 25 or 30 thousand dollars a year for 2 people to live on less than the pension. the only people who think it's a lot of money are people who have never done a days work in there life. Or politicians who live in Fantasyland with no idea of the value of money as they have plenty plus all the perks. people who have what I had old and lives and attempting to support themselves in retirement should be given some benefits such as pharmaceutical health excetra. Jack
    Theo1943
    5th May 2015
    11:13am
    If you have $1M and you get $25K interest a year you could live on $65K a year for about 25 years. And your taxbill would be zero. Why is that a problem?
    biddi
    5th May 2015
    12:18pm
    I believe any retiree should be eligible for the PCC card. That includes self-funded retirees who don't get money from Cenrelink.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    12:21pm
    I agree it is not just the interest on the money you have to live on but that's what your capital is for as well.
    Daffoir
    5th May 2015
    12:41pm
    concur Theo - I am in that zone and getting 61k but 30 minutes looking got me much better interest rate than 2.5%.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    12:44pm
    Theo...The major problem is your maths.3% on a million for the first year yes... then a rapidly dwindling capital thereafter with your draw down of $40,000 each year therafter. What is the incentive for people to save any money...and not be a burden on the taxpayer on retirement? Too many "forever needy" in our society to support... to the detriment of those who strive to achieve.
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    8:21am
    I agree with Jacka. Self-funded retirees SHOULD be much better off than pensioners and should be left with a little to leave their children. Otherwise, why bother to work hard and scrimp and save all your life? So you can watch the Government hand out to all the people who put their money through poker machines, bet on race horses, took lavish holidays, etc. and they can CONTINUE to have a better lifestyle than the hard workers and careful savers ever had?

    I fully support payment of a decent pension to the needy, but the vast majority of full pensioners are only full pensioners because they spent freely in their youth, or they contrived to get the pension (by giving their money to their kids before they turned 60, for example!)

    And why pay part pensions to a couple earning more than $70,000 a year (possibly from a special type of pension that the privileged can enjoy) but not to someone whose investments yield maybe $45,000 a year or less? How is that fair?
    sirmikd
    6th May 2015
    8:40am
    Theo -
    Even if your figures are correct - what will 65K buy in 20 or 25 YEARS TIME from now ? You have not taken inflation into account and who knows whether super growth will outstrip inflation [another factor]. we cant even think of official inflation rates as being representative of some cost increases [ think of your recent insurance premium hikes ] and if you are a home owner what about the longer term maintenance costs you have to provide for,
    The idea of including the home in assets is fraught with valuation problems so proponents of that should really ,really ,REALLY think about that.

    We are often compared with the UK but note none of the major parties in the forthcoming election advocate any form of "means testing" for their state pension.

    lets remember this is not about equitable fairer systems its a money grab by politicians to help balance the budget. Why not cancel a couple of new jets they have on order which are a fiasco anyway if you look into that. Our governments have shown themselves to be incompetent in managing our affairs and I don't see that anything has changed.
    Anonymous
    7th May 2015
    9:12am
    The proposal by the Greens to introduce progressive taxation on super for high income earners would save many times more than the amount this stupid move will save, and would provide incentive and help for people to save for retirement, instead of punishing those who have struggled for years to try to finance a comfortable retirement. This measure will make many who are just over the new assets limit worse off than pensioners. After a lifetime of sacrifice to accrue some savings, that's unfair - especially since the majority of full pensioners are not people who suffered disadvantage, but were spendthrifts who did not go without in earlier years. Now those who struggled and sacrificed to fund a better lifestyle in old age have to hand over all their hard-earned savings to fund higher pensions for the spendthrifts who will now be better off than the savers.
    t won't save money in the long term either, because the returns on investments won't be enough to live on, let alone to grow the nest egg to keep pace with inflation, so very soon all those who have been cheated out of the rewards for being frugal will be on pensions anyway.

    Implementing the Green's proposal for changing the way superannuation income is taxed would cut almost cut the deficit in half without really hurting anyone. It would merely make the very rich pay a fair tax, instead of reaping grossly unfair advantage at the expense of lower income earners who, under the current system, struggle to accumulate a reasonable retirement nest egg. Why won't the Government implement the Green's proposal? Because they only care about looking after the rich - not the deserving battlers who have worked hard to move up just a little in the world. Those who work hard and try must be constantly pushed down, lest they achieve a standard of living that enables them avoid exploitation by the rich.
    Patriot
    5th May 2015
    10:51am
    I do not believe that an "Actual Figure" should be stated as this will be subject to "Inflationary influences" very fast and - then once again make for a draconian regulation.

    Why not take the "Sale Price of homes in a geographical area (suburb), multiply this by this by say 2 (or 3) and accept this as an acceptable threshold for applying the asset test!

    The pricing of such properties should be easily available from "Real Estates" of the Valuer General's office.
    This should identify those who are using their personal HOME as an "Investment Haven"!

    Actions as described above then REMOVE the problem associated with escalated Property Values like Sydney & Melbourne as compared to many "Small Country Town Properties".

    It also ensures that - we the People - do not have to continuously Guard/Fight against implementing "Threshold Adjustments" to avoid being "Caught in the Net" as the "Threshold" is adjusted "fairy & automatically".
    Tim@toc
    5th May 2015
    5:34pm
    In NSW Patriot, the valuations from the Valuer General's Office are for unimproved land value. The valuation does not include the value of the $5million house. That valuation would need to come from another source.
    Patriot
    6th May 2015
    5:11pm
    Tim@toc
    Same here in Queensland.
    However, the Value is Sales in a suburb is reported either to or accessible to them as they adjust the land values even in suburbs where there is "No more vacant land" available for trading.
    Even if my assumptions (1/2 facts) are incorrect, if the "WILL" was there, the mechanics would be easily and simple to devise!

    5th May 2015
    10:55am
    Can't see anything wrong with the projected changes. After all, it's just a reversion to the pre-2007 limits, before Johnny Howard relaxed them for his rich mates.
    Brisand
    5th May 2015
    11:12am
    Aaron, It is not a return to pre-2007 limits as in 2007 superannuation was not included as an asset.
    Anonymous
    7th May 2015
    9:21am
    Also,interest rates have fallen dramatically since pre-2007. It's a different world of investment. Retirees who worked hard and sacrificed lifestyle to accumulate a little for retirement will now be poverty-stricken and tempted to spend all they have quickly so they qualify for the generous benefits given to pensioners.

    Why should someone who has struggled all their life - going without luxuries - to save enough for a comfortable retirement now be worse off than a full pensioner? It's grossly unfair.
    Stof
    5th May 2015
    10:56am
    All the new policy will do will be to force people to spend their hard earned on cars, cruises and holidays until their assets fall below the threshold. Maybe that's what the govt really wants, to boost spending. But it's selling off the family jewels in the long run.
    Stupid, Stupid policy.
    If they have to do something....rather have a withdrawal tax. Now there's an incentive to keep your cash intact!
    Isn't it strange that those that scrimped, saved, didn't go on expensive holidays, now are the cause of the govt overspending like drunken sailors whilst the boom was on.
    Costello, Howard, Rudd, Gillard, Rudd. A pox on all of you!
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    12:23pm
    Time to go on a holiday and enjoy yourself then.
    sirmikd
    6th May 2015
    8:45am
    That's what I will do - spend spend spend but do it overseas so that this government doesn't pick up 10% of my super in GST - they don't deserve it. An end to the age of entitlement works both ways.

    5th May 2015
    11:00am
    Personally, I don't think it's a matter of how one's level of faith in the government has changed over the past 12 months, Rather that their credibility/loyalty should be rated in varying degrees of distrust - at least until such time that they have earned SOME level of taxpayer faith.
    Brisand
    5th May 2015
    11:06am
    We have saved for many years in order to have a relatively small amount of superannuation.
    Super is now included in the asset test. If the government put the asset test to $3:00 per $1000 per f/n that = 7.8% per year, which is more than some superannuation’s are earning . Currently they are taking about 3.9% of the total, not just the earnings, but off the same money every year. This means that if the super did not earn interest the government would take the total amount in less than 13 years.
    This is also more than the required minimum drawdown of 5%
    This money has to last us for the rest of our lives, but instead the government will take it away until we end up needing a full pension. This would be fair only if the full pension limit was raised to compensate for people with a modest super.
    This would totally discourage people from putting money in super and therefore create a worse problem down the track as people will have to start to rely totally on the state pension and/or live in total poverty.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    6:59pm
    "This would totally discourage people from putting money in super and therefore create a worse problem down the track as people will have to start to rely totally on the state pension and/or live in total poverty." Brisand U got it in one! But nobody is listening!!!! These changes, and no doubt many more will follow, will turn saving up a Super Nest Egg nothing but a poor joke. One might as well party now as 'saved money' will simply be given away to 'more deserving people' needing your money!!!!
    Jacka
    5th May 2015
    11:25am
    To Brisand. You've hit the nail on the head, totally correct some of us have saved diligently for the future and are being penalized for it. All most of us would like is the pharmaceutical and health card to help us out in our old age. we can probably struggle along on our savings. The other would be a thank you from the government for a life time of saveings.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:00pm
    Very true Jacka
    Pablo
    5th May 2015
    1:23pm
    You are spot on Jacka, all we want is the pharmaceutical and health card. And as you say, a thank you from the government for not spending every last cent we earned and hence receiving no pension at all.

    Instead of that, all we get is criticism from all directions that we are the ones causing all the problems. I am sick and tired of being told I am the problem when there so many bludgers on the dole and single parent pension who are the real problem facing Australia - they have never given anything to Australia and probably never will while the government is intent on filling their bludging hands with money.
    biddi
    5th May 2015
    1:56pm
    Jacko and Pablo : couldn' t agree more. No prizes here for having done the right thing.
    wally
    5th May 2015
    2:17pm
    No Good Deed Shall Go Unpunished. Is that the message the Gumint wants to send regarding the "Lifters" that contributed to Super?
    Waiting to retire at 70
    5th May 2015
    11:40am
    Dear Joe,

    I'm happy to agree to this diminished threshold, if you and your colleagues can agree your public supplied super is based on that same threshold amount of $820,000.

    My retirement planning over the last 15 years has been predicated/planned/executed on the assumption that the threshold, which now stands at $1.15m for a couple, would be my fall back, if my super fund was not delivering sufficient earnings to live on. The risk profile I took for investments reflected the government published threshold. Now that amount is 29% less.

    So what do I do?

    1. Either ensure I have earnings from my super 29% higher than now - hope and prayer seem the only options for this outcome,
    or
    2. Increase my investment risk to try and generate the 29% additional earnings required. This only exposes my life savings to a more likely failure to generate what's now required - So I'm around 14.5% more likely to need a full pension as much as a decade earlier then I currently estimate (not to mention a part pensioner in the years leading to that event),
    or
    3. Do what commentators currently believe happens and take a lump sum from my super before I retire to get within the new threshold - to me that's TOTALLY unacceptable (not to mention stupid).

    So Joe, over to you. Limit you parliamentary super amount to $820,000 and we can all 'live happily thereafter'. Hey, there goes one of those 'flying pigs' over Capital Hill in Canberra.
    seer
    5th May 2015
    12:16pm
    Right on. Pink flying pigs smoking cuban cigars at that.
    marls
    5th May 2015
    11:41am
    Why always penalised people who have worked and paid taxes what about the young go out and work there is no incentive anymore to work we are the only country in the world that means test age pension overseas if you work you are entitled to a pension no work no pensions we are so backwards
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    7:06pm
    Sorry marls there are many who have never worked a day in their life ... why should they be penalised in their old age? Why can't you pay for their retirement???? How selfish can a person be????
    marls
    5th May 2015
    11:46am
    I wont be voting for you
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:08pm
    It is Labor pushing for these changes...LNP floated the idea of linking the pension to CPI. With the hostile Senate they have little chance of promoting their own agenda. The pension payments are unsustainable. The money tree has not been located yet.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    7:10pm
    Sum1 how foolish are you? Labor will solve all our problems quick smart ... I can't wait for the next Labor Budget! You have not seen anything yet!!!! I am laughing all the way to CentrelinK!!!! I don't think it will be a real problem in my lifetime so who cares???
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    8:27am
    Wrong, Sum1. labor and the Greens put forward proposals to reduce the obscenely generous tax concessions on superannuation earnings for the rich. Labor's proposal was weak. The Green's proposal would cut the deficit in half overnight and boost incentives for retirement savings enormously, help battlers save much more for retirement, and really hurt nobody - though the very rich would not get quite as much Government help to boost their superannuation to mega-millions. It was a fair and sensible proposal, but the Liberals would rather slug the battlers who have scrimped and saved all their lives to achieve a slightly better standard of living in retirement than pensioners enjoy. Now, many will be less well off than if they had blown it all on world cruises (and maybe that's what they need to do now. There's not much incentive to hang on to their money!)
    Adrianus
    7th May 2015
    8:27pm
    Rainey, you should be happy for the real strugglers who will get an extra $30 per f/n in their pension. That's great news!!!
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    6:49pm
    No Frank, I'm not happy that that $30 comes out of my pocket and I will be worse off than they are, after a lifetime of doing it very tough and going without while these CLAIMED strugglers splurged on new cars, gambling and expensive holidays. I am the struggler. Hubby and I earned less than the dole for 25 years, after growing up as orphans (he as a Forgotten Australian abused and deprived) without education or opportunity. We were forced to borrow $100,000 (at a time when that would buy 5 houses) to pay for special health care for a child with a disability. We never got one cent of assistance and we didn't earn enough to ever get a tax concession. But we managed to save by working bloody hard, making our clothes, building our home, fixing our car, etc - in short, by being very enterprising and frugal. And now we are punished for that while those who lived far better and had all the opportunities we missed out on are given more.
    Tomaso
    5th May 2015
    11:46am
    Totally agree with Brisand and Jacka's comments.
    andromeda143
    5th May 2015
    12:05pm
    This change is stupid in the extreme. My wife and I will lose $10000 per year from our pension and will have to fund it from our meagre superannuation. That means our super will run out between 5 and ten years earlier than it would have otherwise and within ten years we will have to live on the full age pension. It will cost the government more in the long run as we will be living on the full pension for about ten years longer. This is sheer madness and very bad economics.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    7:13pm
    The Govt has classified you as 'wealthy' .... stop complaining as there are lots of needy people out there not as well off as you!!!!
    Anonymous
    7th May 2015
    9:18am
    Yes, Peterrj, there are lots of people who put their money through poker machines or bet it on race horses, drank heavily, ate in restaurants, had lavish holidays, etc. In short, there are plenty who spent like drunken sailors, and now people like Andromeda143 are expected to finance a comfortable retirement for those heavy spenders while, himself, struggling to sustain a decent standard of living. It is sheer madness, and very bad economics. It's also grossly unfair and unreasonable by any standard, and reminiscent of the behavior of Communists when they took over China decades ago. And some call this Government ''Liberal''!
    Peterrj
    7th May 2015
    5:07pm
    Hey Rainey ... And your considered point of view of the next Liberal Govt would be what???? Sheer madness and very bad economics???? Like it or not, those heavy spenders you talk about as well a drug addicts and refugees have no money for their retirement. Think how grateful they will be to spend you savings as they have none!
    seer
    5th May 2015
    12:11pm
    Tony you dolt with influence from bolt. You have just lost the votes of those who have saved and worked intensively over their many years. Get lost as I hope you will at the next election.

    How about you look at the succour of parliamentary pensions as you endeavour to use your febrile mind to recovering from the budget "crisis"
    marto
    5th May 2015
    12:40pm
    And dont forget abbott the rabbit there is many of us nomads who have finally stood up and said enough is enough so enjoy yourself till next election and you will then get the boot as you well deserve thats if the senate does not strangle you before hand
    micko
    5th May 2015
    12:22pm
    Looks like it's time to reduce my assets, maybe take a couple of trips around the world while I'm still healthy enough to enjoy it. Thanks for changing the goal posts and wasting years of financial planning, hard work and diligent saving !!
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:31pm
    Micko, hope you did not pay too much for your 'good' financial advice??? Now ask yourself, 'Was saving a nest egg for retirement worth it?'
    micko
    5th May 2015
    9:03pm
    No Peterrj, my financial plan did not include paying useless, greedy advisors heaps of $$$s. But having my "nest egg" tampered with certainly gives me reason to reconsider my future.
    PlanB
    5th May 2015
    12:26pm
    The pollies won't be cutting their lurks and perks it is those that worked hard to try and pay for their homes -- and have had them for may years --and tried to save save a LITTLE --to be used for medical problems in our later life that will be punished
    LENYJAC
    5th May 2015
    12:41pm
    HERE HERE,THEY ARE NOTHING BUR GREEDY PRICKS!!!!!
    PlanB
    5th May 2015
    12:27pm
    The pollies won't be cutting their lurks and perks it is those that worked hard to try and pay for their homes -- and have had them for may years --and tried to save save a LITTLE --to be used for medical problems in our later life that will be punished
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    12:30pm
    It doesn't go far enough the family house should also be included in the assets test. People should be required to spend their capital before applying for the pension not still get the pension with $1.15m plus a house worth in some cases millions. The pension should be just a safety net not a right.
    PlanB
    5th May 2015
    12:57pm
    I guess you haven't saved for your own home Bonny -- I object to be penalized for working hard and doing without all my life to have to have my home counted
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    1:10pm
    Yes I own a house and I saved for my retirement. I just don't think it is fair that some people can own nothing more than a shack and others own houses worth millions get the same pension.
    Chris B T
    5th May 2015
    1:16pm
    Bonny some shacks are worth millions.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:21pm
    Bonny... why should responsible diligent people who study hard..obtain qualifications...get a job...work for 4-5 decades..pay off their mortgage...sacrifice into Super then mainly self fund their retirement...then have to sacrifice again for the "forever needy". Your idea is Death Duties before you die.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:21pm
    Bonny... why should responsible diligent people who study hard..obtain qualifications...get a job...work for 4-5 decades..pay off their mortgage...sacrifice into Super then mainly self fund their retirement...then have to sacrifice again for the "forever needy". Your idea is Death Duties before you die.
    retroy
    5th May 2015
    1:26pm
    Bonny
    Envy is a serious sin, and wanting to bring down a person who has acheived more in their life than you have is worse.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    2:05pm
    Unfortunately there are now more forever needy and we need to also fix the government debt problem. These are not death duties as it is in your hands whether you accumulate them or not.

    Who am I trying to bring down? As far as I am concerned the asset test as it stands is unfair.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    4:46pm
    Bonny...If people accumulate Super they have paid into all their life without the benefit of any real tax savings through not being in the 45% tax bracket and purchase a home in a good area that after 30 years escalates in value to $1m then you want this life's work confiscated. Sounds like premature Death Duties.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    5:21pm
    Still can't see what the problem is with the house being part of the assets test as one can't take the house with them so why not use it for a better retirement. It just makes good sense to me.

    Most wealthy people I know have very little of their wealth in super even though the general public perceives they have a lot for the simple reason that they have better use for money elsewhere without the restrictions and rules both present and future that come with super.
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    8:30am
    Sure, Bonny. Those who worked two or more jobs at a time and went without luxuries, holidays, etc. to save for a decent retirement should now be forced to live on the same as full pensioners get - or less - so that the money can all be gifted to those who blew all their money on lavish lifestyles, expensive holidays, gambling, etc. Take from the lifters to give to the leaners! Great philosophy!

    I'm all for looking after the disadvantaged, but most aged pensioners aren't. They chose their lot, either spending freely in their earlier years, or gifting to their kids before they turned 60, or using other contrived schemes to cheat the system.
    sirmikd
    6th May 2015
    9:01am
    Bonny
    Any one with 1.15 million doesn't gat ANY pension -that's where it cuts out but if say they have just 1 million they do get a part pension but it is so very little its hardly worth getting excited about.
    What is worrying is if they reduce the threshold where pensions start reducing AND if they in crease the taper rat [ currently 1.50 /$1000 ] because this will hit HARd on those with modest assets of say 500,000 [ which I know might sound a lot to some people] but there are more people in this category than the million dollar range so it means these changes are going to hit thousands of "ordinary" Australians who's standard of living. planned for many years , is going to be dragged down. I wont vote for this government again although I have been a Liberal supporter most of my life.
    Radish
    5th May 2015
    12:51pm
    From what I heard it is only going to affect 250,000 people who are getting a part pension. I dont know why the concern.
    Many have on this site been crying out for the wealthy to pay more. The cut off point for a married couple for a small part pension will be $800,000, if the leaks are correct.
    The trade off will be that the pension will not be linked to CPI.

    I fail to see what is wrong with that.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    1:07pm
    I agree.
    dougie
    5th May 2015
    2:23pm
    Only the wealthy will whinge. The less favoured probably will not gain but they will not lose. Fair enough everyone has screamed in their postings about this so what will you scream about now?
    dougie
    5th May 2015
    2:23pm
    Only the wealthy will whinge. The less favoured probably will not gain but they will not lose. Fair enough everyone has screamed in their postings about this so what will you scream about now?
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:31pm
    Was just reading that elsewhere - was struck by the 'sell' from Morrison that it was either one or the other.... why not both? His 'sell' is that unless this is put in place, it will be CPI - AND the Senate will 'have' to pass the other cost cutting measures to allow it to proceed.

    What a load of poppy-cock.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:31pm
    Was just reading that elsewhere - was struck by the 'sell' from Morrison that it was either one or the other.... why not both? His 'sell' is that unless this is put in place, it will be CPI - AND the Senate will 'have' to pass the other cost cutting measures to allow it to proceed.

    What a load of poppy-cock.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:31pm
    Was just reading that elsewhere - was struck by the 'sell' from Morrison that it was either one or the other.... why not both? His 'sell' is that unless this is put in place, it will be CPI - AND the Senate will 'have' to pass the other cost cutting measures to allow it to proceed.

    What a load of poppy-cock.
    Radish
    5th May 2015
    2:32pm
    Dougie, you are correct. It will only affect those married couples who have assets over $800,00 and I singles over $550,00 I think it was.
    Everyone else things stay the same.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:32pm
    MPD - Multiple Posting Disorder.... sorry...
    Grateful
    5th May 2015
    3:02pm
    This is so unlike the Libs, which makes you think that there must be a corresponding "catch" for those on the base rate. It has to be "fair" don't forget, so, what's good (bad) for the top lot, must also be worn by those on the bottom. Fair???
    And it would be great if those on the full pension are not all painted with the same brush. "There but for the grace of God go I" and "walk a mile in my shoes" come to mind very quickly.
    Yes, I'm very grateful to either be able to work and save a large retirement nest egg and/or to be protected if, for some reason, I need support. What a great country we live in. Enjoy.
    *Imagine*
    5th May 2015
    5:29pm
    Radish and dougie you are not correct. The asset test works on a sliding scale. Anybody with assets over the threshold will be affected. At present the pension reduces by $1.50 per fortnight for every $1000 that you have over the threshold. That is about to change to about $2.00 reduction, in order to cut off at the new levels. I imagine some will be unpleasantly surprised by that.
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    8:34am
    Oh that's okay the, Radish. Only 250,000 will be forced to spend their life savings just getting by while those who enjoyed a lavish lifestyle earlier take taxpayer handouts. A couple with $820,000 in assets would be very hard-pressed to be as well off as a pensioner. But it's apparently far more important to be generous to the wasters and bludgers than to be fair to those who worked hard and saved all their lives to try to achieve a comfortable retirement - a comfortable retirement that now they are to be denied. I fully support looking after the genuinely disadvantaged, but most aged pensioners aren't. The majority of full aged pensioners are people who were far, far better off, in earlier life, than I was, but who either spent freely or contrived to beat the system.
    Radish
    6th May 2015
    4:52pm
    Imagine if you read my post again I did said "It will only affect those married couples who have assets over $800,000 and singles over $550,000." They will therefore get nothing. I am saying the same thing you have said :).

    I am quite aware there is a sliding scale. Those UP to those amounts will still get the same amounts they currently get.
    Justsane
    8th May 2015
    3:50am
    Radish. You point out that the trade off will be that the pension will not be linked to CPI. I have a feeling that we might be being duped yet again. I am all for the pension being linked to the Average Male Wage and not just to the CPI, but look how much the increase in the pension was last time - $4.40 a fortnight each per couple and $5.90 for a single, the lowest for years. Therefore, the pension may have already reached 28% of the AMW and in the future the differences between the CPI and the AMW increases may not be that great. It may be time to increase the percentage of the AMW linked to pensions. 30% does not seem too much.
    disillusioned
    5th May 2015
    12:55pm
    I am disgusted with the Federal Government cracking down on retirees when we have only just received an upgrade of assets. How many of us like me are living on superannuation pensions coupled with a measly bit of aged pension? Were'nt we encouraged to save for our old age? Now we are being penalised for doing so! They are too cowardly to crack down on tax evasion by big business, so they are attacking the old and vulnerable again - shame, Abbott and Hockey, shame!!
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    1:40pm
    If you only get a measly bit of aged pension then what is your problem?
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:38pm
    Were'nt we encouraged to save for our old age?' Dear disillusioned, don't be so disillusioned ... how else can we pay for those who have never worked? Thank you for being so gullible to allow others to spend your money!!!
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    9:00am
    My problem, Bonny, is that those getting full pensions had their world trips, ate in restaurants, drove new cars, dressed well, gambled, etc. while I scrimped and saved to fund a retirement lifestyle that I'm now to be denied. We will now be worse off than full pensioners, after a lifetime of hard work and going without to ensure we would have a little extra in old age.
    Anonymous
    6th May 2015
    9:01am
    My problem, Bonny, is that those getting full pensions had their world trips, ate in restaurants, drove new cars, dressed well, gambled, etc. while I scrimped and saved to fund a retirement lifestyle that I'm now to be denied. We will now be worse off than full pensioners, after a lifetime of hard work and going without to ensure we would have a little extra in old age.
    Adrianus
    7th May 2015
    8:39pm
    Well, the truth comes out now!!!
    A month ago you and other posters led me to believe those on a full pension had fallen on hard times, been struck down by illness after getting a poor start in life.
    Now you're saying they have been living the high life? "world trips, ate in restaurants, drove new cars, dressed well, gambled."
    They have been budgeting well on the pension?
    Somehow you're not convincing me and I am happy the Abbott government can find an extra $30 f/n pension for them.
    This is a compassionate government.
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    7:59pm
    SOME have fallen on hard times or been struck down by illness after getting a poor start in life, Frank, and I fully support being charitable to them. But a much larger number wasted their earnings. I'm glad the Abbott government can find an extra $30 for those relatively few who genuinely need it, but it shouldn't be at the expense of those who, after a lifetime of struggle, can't afford to finance their own comfortable retirement. Take a little more from the genuinely wealthy. There are plenty of areas to make savings without victimizing people who have earned a comfortable retirement but who will now be worse off than pensioners.
    Baz
    5th May 2015
    1:05pm
    It may be logical and fair in an era of normal and high interest rates. However, you can only safely earn around 3% in the bank with every prospect of going lower so a couple with $1 million would have about $30,000 income, which is less than the full pension ($33,700) and no fringe benefits. Call that fair?
    retroy
    5th May 2015
    1:35pm
    Baz
    The jealous ones on this site would want you to draw down on your capital so you can then be as poor as them living on $33.7K.
    Thats how low Australian society has got, wanting to deliver a kick in the guts to every above average achiever.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    2:25pm
    I thought the idea of saving for retirement was to spend the money not just the interest it earns. Unless you are prepared to take on a little less risk than interest investments then at this point of the economic cycle you will get relatively poor returns.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    2:42pm
    Reserve bank just cut the cash rate to 2%. Good for growth investments.
    Sceptic
    5th May 2015
    3:00pm
    The problem with spending your capital is that it not only diminishes with the spending, thus a lower interest return on the balance, but also when the next "correction" to the market comes the capital reduces and is never replenished as it would be if a salary is being earned. If your assets are held in cash, the deeming rate is higher than the current bank interest rate.
    Chris B T
    5th May 2015
    1:08pm
    The trouble is what is included in asset tests now, to the past.
    Each couple of years the rules change and your retirement planing isn't as flexible.
    Then there is those already committed to a retirement funding arrangements based on the rules at the time.
    The prospect of this Gov' achieving anything without causing "KYEOUS" is remote.
    Chris B T
    5th May 2015
    1:45pm
    PS
    Living to retirement age and beyound is a major inconvenience.
    Not what was expected.
    boxer
    5th May 2015
    1:11pm
    We worked long and hard, went without overseas trips etc to have saving for our retirement.
    We didn't have children so never had a cent from the government. We didn't put our money away in trusts etc that could have saved us having to declare everything. We will give us the tiny pension we get, but feel we have well and truly deserve the pension discounts
    *Imagine*
    5th May 2015
    1:13pm
    Thanks for moving the goal posts. Our friends live in a $1.2million house and we live in a modest $500k house but have a river shack that cost $30 000 in the 70's now valued by the Valuer General at $250k. Total property $750k - much less than our friends. Both couples have about $500k in super and receive a part pension. That is, our savings over our lifetime save the Government money.
    For reasons known only to Centrelink, they value our beach shack at $400k, add that to our super ($400k + $500k) and we will exceed the threshold for a part pension. Our friends who are better off by hundreds of thousands of dollars will still get it. Under this proposal we will be expected to live off 5% of $500k = $25 000 per year and NO concession card. This is about $10 000 less than the full pension. How is that just, equitable, sensible?
    We are not rich, we saved to be comfortable and supplement the part pension with a little of our own - now we will be the new poor. Result - we are considering selling the shack, going on holiday, buying a better house and applying for the pension. The whole proposal is therefore self destructive and in the process puts those of us who worked hard and saved to help ourselves to a brighter future, through enormous stress and change of lifestyle. I cannot believe that our politicians can be so short sighted and so out of touch.
    As somebody once stated, imagine four couples on a bus, each with a net worth of $2 million dollars. One has an expensive house, one a huge super account, one has it in family trusts and one is a naive PAYE worker who worked two jobs, saved hard and was frugal. Only one still pays taxes and gets no pension - who is it?
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    1:26pm
    A very good argument for including the house in the assets test. What about he person who has all of these? They saved too and get nothing too.
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:36pm
    I agree and sympathise with your situation. I also had a circumstance not dissimilar to yours and after being slugged nearly $100.000 for an excess contributions tax ECT to my Super by the ATO...they didn't count a withdrawals...another story. I sold my townhouse and built a new house worth $1m. Withdrew all monies from Super to dip below $280,000. Instead of being a self funded retiree my wife and I now get the full aged pension. For every $100,000 you have in Super you lose $4000 in your pension. It is simply not worth the sacrifice to be a responsible citizen as you are labelled greedy by the forever needy. It will take me several years to break even then it becomes revenge time.
    BeezNeez
    5th May 2015
    1:42pm
    Agreed Imagine....we all know the answer to your question. There seems to be no incentive from either party for people to work hard. All I can say though is, at least the current generation of retirees have some options...even if the 'goal posts' are moving. Hubby and I will be lucky to qualify for one at all with the changes that will be in place by the time we reach that milestone and in the meantime anything we are doing to try and put us in a better position by the time we get there is under threat as well (eg. negative gearing etc, changes to super limits, tax etc.). My husband works 60-70 hours a week. Our children attend public school, which costs us thousands each year (costs my parents never had like tutoring and laptops, printers and various other appliances etc. are now absolute requirements, not nice to have) and the pension age has been lifted to 70. We have never minded doing our bid, working hard to bit something away to fund our own retirement etc., but would still like access to the discounts that come with a pension so that we can make that money last, but it seems that's just getting harder and harder to do. As the middle class is continually being called upon to pay for those with less and those with more. In truth though, it is my own children I am most concerned about. By the time we leave this mortal coil, no doubt they will be getting taxed to the hilt to pay for the amount of social welfare we will have but and hard work will be of no use to them, because even if there is anything left to will to them, it will likely carry a heft death tax by then. (just as an aside though, don't be angry with your friend who put their money into their house instead of the choice you made-I'm sure that decision brought you much happiness over the years. We all make our choices the way we see best fit at the time. It isn't their fault, any more than yours, that the current changes see them better off...I'm sure they worked just as hard as you did and they are not the 'enemy' here-we need to be kind to our 'neighbours', they don't make the rules!
    KSS
    5th May 2015
    1:44pm
    The things is Imagine, you could sell the investment property (the river shack) and add the proceeds to your super making a total $750,000 in super: less than the threshold and still retain your pension! Of course if it IS in fact worth $400,000 as Centrelink suggest, you would lose the pension altogether but you would have close to $1000000 in super - enough to have a modest retirement without the pension.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:44pm
    Dear Sum1 "It is simply not worth the sacrifice to be a responsible citizen as you are labelled greedy by the forever needy." And let the needy eat cake?
    Sum1
    6th May 2015
    9:02am
    Peterrj....correct call....I was brought up in a housing trust house in the 50's with one working parent my father a migrant who was on minimum wage. I was raised to get a job, save for a home and put some away for the so called rainy day. I did this and lucky for my my three children all with University degrees were able to make me a little more street wise later in life. Hence
    NO savings above $300,000. At this level you are only a battler. 5% min draw down on Super =$15000 peryr. $32,000 from Centrelink. Discounts on all Elec/Council/car rego etc. $47,000 tax free with benefits and the biggest luxury of all is I am now a BATTLER now no longer that Greedy Wealthy Mean Spirited citizen who is the reason apparently that we have so many underprivileged.
    Peterrj
    7th May 2015
    12:36am
    Hi Sum1. In was granted a Terminating Building Society Home Loan in 1973 to buy my Fibro home. Anyone heard of such a home loan???? I like your stats but how do you go from $32,000 plus $1,5000 to get to $47,000 tax free with extra benefits???? No offence just curious????
    mogo51
    5th May 2015
    1:27pm
    Sound policy iIMO. NOw for changes to taxation for international and corporate taxation, so that they pay tax where the money is earned. Do away with trusts and other tax dodging policies and remove the ridiculous retirement benefits for politicians and freeze their wages
    for another 3 years.
    KSS
    5th May 2015
    1:30pm
    "The move to implement a small change to the assets test...."
    I hardly think that a 30% reduction in assets can be considered a small change!

    Clearly we now have a definition of 'wealthy'. Its those with a minimum $550,000 in super and own their own home!

    Whilst I don't have an issue with the policy per se, I think the predicted levels are too low particularly if someone's super is expected to last upwards of 25-30 years. At $550,000, work out the numbers and they are no better off than those on a full pension.

    So, if this prediction is true, all you on the full pension can now consider yourselves 'wealthy' and stop your complaining!
    Sum1
    5th May 2015
    1:40pm
    Good Call.
    nena
    5th May 2015
    1:31pm
    So far I feel fortunate. I worked hard most of my life (on pay and voluntary jobs, still doing a bit of vol.) and the only thing I always wanted to have was a Uni Degree and a "roof" ah...and the Internet! Spent any spear money on traveling so today I feel spiritual rich because I have got every thing I need...no spear money any more... But I'm very contented living in my modest two bedrooms unit accompanied by my two legged creature and my memories, good and bad...all on the old age pension...nothing else but happy. If possible, I will get a R/M and buy a brand new little car...what more one needs in life?
    The sarge
    5th May 2015
    1:37pm
    Fair to who? I have worked all my life and saved to be comfortable in my retirement but now I am the enemy whilst neer do wells and migrants who come here with nothing are given every assistance. and those of us who have sacrificed during our working lives have to suffer for considering our future. But it would appear the government cares nothing for this. All I wanted was a health card to help make my money go further. Already included super now this. Never again Liberal (Voted for them all my life)
    nena
    5th May 2015
    1:53pm
    We are all mortals...
    Waiting to retire at 70
    5th May 2015
    2:10pm
    Yes, your weapon is in your vote, AND that of your children (mine see the very real impact of this on their hardworking parents)
    Bushy
    5th May 2015
    2:45pm
    I agree with you Sarge...all we want is a fair go...worked hard all my life, taken risks investing in shares and rentals and built up our farm and all I wanted was a bit of a hand when seasons are tough and the health care card. Might follow you and vote for the other side..
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:49pm
    'Never again Liberal'??? Aye??? Be careful, you may just get your wish!!!! I am sure that Labor will respect your life of labour?
    Waiting to retire at 70
    5th May 2015
    2:07pm
    Remember it is $800,000 of Assets, including super. So the car, furniture, possibly a 'tinnie', etc.

    Let say your super is $700K of those Assets. Your likely return with a retired person risk profile today would be say 2.5% (all in cash investments) to 5% (across a number of sectors, including cash, bonds, shares, etc).
    So you could expect between $17,500 and $35,000 annually to live on. Out of that you will have to pay your own medical insurance ($400 a month). Leaving you between $12,800 and $30,200 to get by on.

    Even the government site says a moderate standard of living requires around $33,766 a year.

    The Pension, for a couple, is currently $33,035.60 + free medical, etc (estimated by someone else commenting above at $10,000 a year today).

    So next year, will see the following:

    Government web site is likely to show around $35,000 for a moderate standard of living.

    Self funded retiree:
    Your $700,000, with inflation at 3%, will now buy the equivalent of $679,000. Returns on that amount are likely to be $16,975 (2.5% return) and $33,950 (5% return).
    Your private health insurance will have gone up 8% (the average annual increase over the last 7 years) to $513:60 a month. Leaving you $10,800 (on 2.5% super return) and $27,780 (on 5% super return).

    Pension for a couple will be upwards of $34,000 (used inflation figure, not Male Average Wage Increase, which will be higher) + $10,600 (3% higher than now) of benefits to cover medical, pharmacuticals, rate discount, power discounts etc.

    So this is today's definition of Advance Australia FAIR:
    Pensioners barely getting enough to live on and
    others who've had the opportunity to save and purchase their home through THEIR own hard efforts, being made to live on less.

    Joe, Tony, et al, get out of your Commonwealth Cars and take a taxi. The driver will introduce you to reality.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    2:31pm
    I thought the idea was to spend down your capital as well as the interest it earns. Someone posted a link to an annuity calculator recently. That's what you need to calculate your retirement income.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    3:04pm
    Anyway - at the moment this is all talk - Morrison put this one up to scare some result, hoping to get the Senate to come in for all the OTHER 'cost-saving' issues.... which was what he stipulated in his 'sell'....

    It's either chop the knees off pensioners - or accept chopping off those with all the lovely - but you have to pass everything else at the same time, or it's no deal.

    Ain't he a sweet guy?

    Must think we were born yesterday. I'd rather the Senate let it run until election time and hear the people shout....
    *Imagine*
    5th May 2015
    5:06pm
    So Bonny we save for a rainy day or to enjoy a better than State Funded retirement.We are already saving the government money through our sensible conservative approach to finance by not being eligible for a full pension. You and others then tell us to spend our hard earned savings before we are able to access any Government benefit. Benefits that are enjoyed by a person who may have contributed nothing to Australia except beer and cigarette duties, lived on the dole all their working lives, fathered two or more children to two or more single mums, and who now gets a full age pension,rent assistance and a concession card. Why not just call for 100% death taxes and have done with it. Sorry but there is no equity in your argument.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    5:28pm
    Lots of equity in my argument. Just ask a person whose other assets are just outside the pension limits and who live in a very modest home what they think of someone living in a $3 million dollar house and getting the full pension.

    That is why the house needs to be included in the assets test.
    *Imagine*
    5th May 2015
    6:24pm
    You do not mention the house in this post.
    What I disagree with is your statement above "I thought the idea was to spend down your capital as well as the interest it earns."
    Who says that is the idea? You? What value is there in saving at all, if you are penalised for it? Indeed, the ultimate result of your view would be forcing people to sell their homes and live off the proceeds. That is compulsory reverse mortgages.
    If you believe that to be equitable, fine, but don't expect to get much support.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:56pm
    Dear Whingers, Where is your ANZAC spirit? Just think of Australia and how re-distributing your wealth will benefit not just you but all Australians no matter how they have arrived in Australia???
    blue
    5th May 2015
    2:12pm
    maybe the government should look at their benefits on retirement and reduce them they would then have enough funds to stop worrying the pensioner it is never their benefits that are looked at
    Crafty
    5th May 2015
    2:18pm
    just a thought. there are a lot of people who suffer dibilitating diseases. there are a lot of people who serve you in many ways, at the stores, over the phone, trades and other lower income occupations. these people barely pay for the neccessities and maybe their homes. they are not bludgers, just people trying to survive and they have worked all their lives. be thankful if you have more.
    rattler
    5th May 2015
    5:14pm
    Thank you hopefull for reminding people that there are those of us that have been in low paid jobs up to full retirement age.Its hard that now we are considered to be the "forever needy" and being made to feel guilt at living solely on the aged pension.

    Rattler
    rattler
    5th May 2015
    5:19pm
    Just to add I don't begrudge what the others may have.But am wounded that they begrudge me my pension.
    Rattler
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    8:59pm
    Rattler '... my pension'? Do you own the pension? The age of entitlement is over, didn't you get the message of the Libs???
    rattler
    6th May 2015
    3:42pm
    Yes ... my pension which I have put off claiming till I reached 72 years this year. OK the age of entitlement is over. That does not scrap the last 57 years of my tax paying working life as a low income worker. I retired this year.
    Grateful
    5th May 2015
    2:18pm
    From the Australian:

    ‘The Textor research shows that 82 per cent of people think the Australian economy is stable, bad or getting worse and 53 per cent think life in Australia is stable, bad or getting worse. A huge 94 per cent believe the nation “needs a better plan for its long-term future”.

    ‘The project, conducted for the Business Council of Australia earlier this year, reveals a growing apprehension on the community’s part, with 83 per cent of people saying that “a worsening of economic conditions in Australia will affect them personally”.

    ‘One of the most worrying but unsurprising findings is disillusionment and distrust of the political system. People doubt whether it is strong enough to preside over the necessary changes needed. This public sentiment confirms the notion of a growing “crisis of the system”.

    --The President of the BCA, Catherine Livingstone, said this level of concern was unprecedented in more than 30 years of polling.
    If the Libs are doing this, there MUST be a "crisis". Who'd have thought??? Prepare for worse (economic climate, not decisions, yet).
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:28pm
    It all depends on what those 'assets' are - should a person/couple be penalised for owning a boat, a caravan, a decent retirement vehicle, a jet ski - or whatever? Good set of golf clubs?

    ONLY if an asset is an income-bearing one should it be considered, and in any case that is, with investments apart from super anyway, already considered in both taxation and determining pension eligibility and level of support.
    Bushy
    5th May 2015
    2:39pm
    What about farmers. We have worked 7 days a week most of our lives to buy our property. Now we find that only our house and yard are exempt. Our house is old and of very little value but our land where we have put most of our money - into infrastructure eg pastures, bores/irrigation etc is valued above $800,000. So we are not able to get a pension..But if I had a house in Sydney and it was valued at $1,000,000 and supa of $200,000 I would get the full pension. I do not think we should have to sell our home and life style when the city home owners do not have to do a thing. We will have to work the rest of our lives to stay in our home. Also city prices rise in value where farms are losing value..The $1,000,000 house in the city will probably double in value in 10 -15 years...whereas our farms will lucky to retain their value..
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:50pm
    Yes - friends up the road - in 70s and 80's - have farmland - too old to work it, though they run a few cows for beef... cuts a lot out of their pension - they can't eat it.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    2:51pm
    I've argued against including the family home at all - sounds like too much imposition from government there...
    dancer01
    5th May 2015
    2:46pm
    I do wish pensioners would stop complaining. We had no Super when we had to retire in 1986. Heart attack." No more work" Doctor said. We have not had any overseas trips. I don't smoke drink or gamble, but lead an active and happy lifestyle. We were in debt when we were forced to retire, but we have managed. We have food on the table, which I cook. a bed to sleep in and a roof over our head which we own.
    Anonymous
    5th May 2015
    2:59pm
    Yes that is good result nice to see someone who has the correct attitude and has done well for themselves.

    I too look after myself financially don't want any part of the pension (always thought it was for losers) but I do have a couple of beers and a small gamble from time to time,
    PlanB
    5th May 2015
    3:08pm
    Much the same as I Dancer I had no super either, I am on the pension now and hope I can still be, as at my age I really don't need stress
    Brisand
    5th May 2015
    4:21pm
    There appears to be a misconception about this. The cutoff does not start at $800000 but at $286,500 total for a couple. this includes cars furniture superannuation (total figure, Not just payments and withdrawals), plus for some also there boats acravans etc.if they are lucky enough to own them. yes even your little tinnie and motor is counted.
    Plus I got my earlier figures slightly wrong. The government will take 7.8% per year of your super plus you are required to take a minimum of 5% PER YEAR THIS = 12,8% per year by which your super will be reduced.
    This means that if you can earn 5% on you super it will only last less than 13 years if you are lucky.
    With interest rates as they are now and banks paying less than 3% you will be lucky if it lasts 9 years and then you can claim the full pension and live on the breadline.
    Tomaso
    5th May 2015
    4:21pm
    Leila, where did u look for better interest pls???
    AquarianIdealist
    5th May 2015
    4:23pm
    My only concern is that most of those to be effected by these changes would have paid their share of taxes. This does not address those persons who by choice chose not to pay any tax and in most cases qualify for the full pension. I always believed that the age pension was a safety net, how can it be if people can manipulate their lifestyle so as to qualify for it.
    AquarianIdealist
    5th May 2015
    4:26pm
    fearlessfly, why should you have free access to the Australian while I pay for the privelidge.
    fearlessfly
    5th May 2015
    7:03pm
    What can I say ? I certainly would not advise anyone to sign up to a newspaper website paywall. I manage quite well reading the Age online without having to do that, their paywall is easily tricked. The Australian can just stay off my horizon.
    Wolfman
    5th May 2015
    4:53pm
    This hard earned money I have put away all my life and sacrificed life style in doing so has now become a liability. Those who have squandered all their money and lived the high life, all their lives will benefit and what I would have been entitled will now go to them.
    What a joke...
    Not to mention that current long term interest rates are approx 2% and on $820,000 will bring me a massive $16,400 Per Year + Fees.
    It's all well and good to lower the Threshold if the interest rates were 10% as per 20 years ago.
    So, If this goes ahead, I will spend my money down to meet the assets test, simple.
    Peterrj
    5th May 2015
    9:07pm
    Wolfman, please don't carry out your threat and squander your savings as those you speak about need it far more than you! Think how grateful they will be to spend our money.
    Jurassicgeek
    5th May 2015
    5:02pm
    once again we see the bean counters scanning the pensions for easy cuts ..pretty fair this time but the cuts wont stop there in the future..this is just the beginning...Still we dont see these same bean counters examining lerks and perks of pollies..that would be a good place to start...too many snouts in the trough...
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    7:42pm
    How do you figure it's ''pretty fair'' to take from those who struggled and sacrificed but who, despite their best efforts, couldn't accumulate enough to generate investment returns anywhere near equal to the pension + benefits, while handing out more to the people who wasted their money on an extravagant lifestyle? Many of those affected will now be worse off than pensioners unless they spend their savings nest-egg and forfeit the benefit they struggled and went without for years to accrue. Meanwhile, the bludgers, cheats and spendthrifts get more! Good that the few genuinely disadvantaged get more, but the whole system is grossly unfair and this change makes it much worse. It victimizes the real ''lifters'' of this country, and it removes all incentive to for battlers to work hard and save. Stupid!
    THE FORGOTTEN
    5th May 2015
    5:05pm
    It sounds like Bonnie is really Fat Joe, and his Belgian puppy, in disguise.Can you afford the cigars on your pension and perks.?
    Now all the non working life time dole bludgers, who have sucked our hard earned tax over decades, are jealous that I have worked for over 4 decades to support them,now I am greedy for forsaking an extravagant lifestyle all my life. Let's get Super Tax from the large Multinationals (Apple,Google,etc) , who are paying no tax on $Billions earnt from Australian's, and the super rich like Gina Reinhard who pay minimal tax (8%), like Bondy (current worth $200 million) and his band of robbers did in the 80's,and still do. And for all the never worked dole bludgers who for 3 generations, and counting, who complain about people like myself who WORKED for a living and a better future over those 3 generations, get a life and be grateful you get a dole payment which is a privilege NOT a right.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    5:54pm
    Agree the dole payment is a privilege. That's one privilege I've never got myself. Once had a farm with animals but no animals on my estate today. No cigars or wine either as I don't indulge in either as I respect my health much better than that. Don't buy Apple products either and don't have Google ads showing anymore.
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    11:51pm
    How many jobs can I put you down for? There are 800,000 unemployed... they do not deserve to be labeled 'dole bludgers' or anything but unemployment benefit recipient.

    Those grand-kids of yours who just left school and have no other income - are they 'dole bludgers'?All those 50 year olds thrown out of car building - are they 'dole bludgers'?

    Unemployment is not a privilege - it is a right paid for out of taxes that everyone pays. If you imagine it is a chosen lifestyle, perhaps you could live on it for a week.
    Patriot
    6th May 2015
    7:26am
    TREBOR
    Dignified life is a "People's right" in ANY country.
    That means, a place to sleep & shelter, Quality food & water to consume and clean & whole clothing to keep warm.

    None of this is required to be "The latest & greatest" but MUST be functional.
    STUFF JOE & TONY and all the other GREEDY POLITICIANS !!!!
    Chrissy L
    5th May 2015
    5:39pm
    I have read with interest the many comments regarding the possible changes to Asset Tests for the Pension or Part Pension on this blog.
    I would make the following comments:-
    As a single female part pensioner, I have experienced in my working life, no child care supplements. Minimal Family Allowance payments. No Dole payments. Having to pay extra tax at the end of my working life,
    having the government take over $3000 from my Super due to my last working salary. Paying interest rates for my mortgage of up to 18% interest rates. I have tried to ensure I have put away sufficient to give me a reasonable quality of life during my retirement years as advised by the Government and Financial Advisers. I have a modest home, less than $500.000. My expenditure has increased, as I have recently lost my life partner and now have to pay for maintenance to my home and garden for "boy" jobs that my husband used to do. My pension income has been reduced dramatically as a part single pensioner. My question is how much more do we have to endure to live a modest lifestyle? How many more times is this Government going to change the "goal posts." As Seniors we need some continuity of security, we now have less income due to reductions in interest rates,no hope of more income, our retirement plans are up the creek.

    I do not mind paying my share, but in the next Budget, Mr Hockey and Abbot, I will be looking very closely at what you are doing with Tax for the big end of town, the Multi-Nationals and last but not least perks for the Politicians, previous P.M.'s and all the hangers on. Monuments, Knighthoods for Royalty and all that are getting payments that should be going into the economy for the average, non-cigar smoking Aussie.
    When are you going to look for extra revenue or savings from outside the Seniors/Pensioner/Part Pensioner areas. Quite frankly enough is enough.
    Chris B T
    5th May 2015
    8:42pm
    Chrissy L
    Don't encourage the Gov' as they might be looking at Medicare and reduce or restrict services to "older folk" .PBS safety net first salvo, there looking outside of social security but not out of reach of seniors etc.
    Soft targets or contempt by Gov' or both.
    As you said needs to be Multi Nationals, but a minimum taxing levels need to be set for all no trading down to very marginal or zero tax receipts.
    Ny19
    6th May 2015
    7:48am
    Well said Chrissy L.
    Annie
    5th May 2015
    6:35pm
    I saved I worked four years longer than I needed to and could have collected a pension,which now impacts on my pension entitlements. I downsized from the family home and invested my savings into my super. Now I need to upsize my living accommodation, as my family home is exempt from the asset test so I can collect some pension benefits and leave the family home to my children instead of nothing because I had to use it up to live on.
    Radish
    6th May 2015
    4:55pm
    I still pay tax, the medicare levy and I pay Medibank Private. I am not complaining and I am quite happy for those who are more deserving to get the pension and all that goes with it.

    However, I am not happy that some re-arrange their finances in order to get everything they can. Morally I think that is wrong even though legally they can do it.

    I paid my way while I worked and I don't mind doing it in retirement.
    Mar
    5th May 2015
    7:22pm
    Spot on Chrissy L. My life experience too. "enough IS enough"
    Chrissy L
    5th May 2015
    7:34pm
    Thank you for your comment Mar, sometimes I think I am on my own!
    gillygally
    5th May 2015
    8:42pm
    The only person I can find who agrees with Bonny is Bonny. Why should I draw down on my modest capital? I'll need that to fund the nursing home if I'm unlucky enough to live that long.
    Bonny
    5th May 2015
    9:38pm
    You don't need any capital to fund a nursing home place now. I campaign on many issues and nursing homes will not be needed as much in the future as I think by then we will all have access to dying with dignity and I for one don't want to spend any time in God's waiting room. Already seen enough of nursing homes to last me a lifetime.
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    8:10pm
    You DO need capital to fund a place in a nursing home now, Bonny, Quite a bit of it. I just put my mother in one and it was a struggle to finance it. What MIGHT happen in the future - because you apparently want it to - is irrelevant. The fact is that right now anyone who is kicked off benefits due to the change in assets level is being victimized and is unlikely to be as well off as a pensioner without draining their capital,which means it will run out in a few years. After a lifetime of hard work and sacrifice, struggling to save and trying to responsibly follow the advice of successive Governments to plan and save for old age, thousands will be now be cheated of everything they worked and saved for so that the Government can keep indulging the genuinely rich and hand out more to bludgers, cheats, and extravagant, irresponsible people. I support paying fair pensions to the disadvantaged, but everyone who saved for their own retirement should be substantially better off than anyone who didn't.
    The Black Fox
    5th May 2015
    9:16pm
    My wife and I are in our 70s and from country WA. We have both worked very hard all our lives - this including looking after two of our children who have a disorder which generally brings with it increasing dependency and early death. The older one is now deceased.
    Our home is worth $300k if we are lucky and can sell it and has a $100K debt on it. We also have a unit in the city near the only hospital which treats our children's disorder. This unit makes it possible to access essential treatment in the most economical way - e.g. we've used it for 7 of the last 12 months. The unit is worth $450 - $500k. We can't rent it out as our need for it is directly related to family health at the time and it is not big enough to live in permanently.
    Our other assets add up to about 200k and are our only source of often required emergency funding. We are eligible for a quite small but extremely helpful part pension. Our total worth is about 850k, $550k of which is assessable.
    Under the Abbott Government's proposed changes to the Assets Test, as reported in the press, we may well be ruled out of receiving any pension at all and this will definitely make things incredibly difficult for us, particularly given the extra medical and related costs we incur.
    Many family homes will be worth far more than our combined assets. The value of these won't be counted in the assets test and the owners will able to, potentially at least, claim a full pension. We will be ruled out of a pension altogether while having the same or a lesser asset value.
    I've heard talk of this being a fair policy and that there will be winners and losers. It depends on your definition of fairness doesn't it? I certainly hope that the great variation in personal circumstances will be properly considered in the final policy announcement.
    Spirit Level
    5th May 2015
    10:12pm
    If they lower the assets much lower it just won't be worth having Superannuation as we will be no better off than someone who has always spent all their money an therefore qualify for the full age pension
    Chrissy L
    5th May 2015
    10:37pm
    Chris BT, I don't encourage anything that causes detriment to us older people. I am just getting very, very, fed up, with them (the Government) targeting us, (the Pensioners, the Part Pensioners, the average Aussie) who have always tried to do the right thing. When there are much, more rich people (including
    themselves) out there who can well afford to get off the social security ladder for whatever reason and give the average working class Aussie a fair go! Most Middle Class Aussies have tried to build a small nest egg, to help them have a decent lifestyle in their older years. We have been brought up with that concept, the point I am making, is now the Government wants to change the rules and the Asset Test. I would hope they wake up to themselves, go after the tax dodgers, the subcontractors ripping off the backpackers, the multi-nationals not paying tax in Oz, ENOUGH IS ENOuGH!!!
    TREBOR
    5th May 2015
    11:52pm
    Maybe they didn't have any more than just enough to spend it - life isn't always a sweet ride and a big bowl of cherries....
    Sheriff
    5th May 2015
    10:57pm
    The government is looking after the top end of town, giving aid to countries that neither need it or appreciate it or our country. If that is not enough they waste a lot of money on poorly formulated and poorly administered projects.
    The they take their advice from public servants that we pay and who will live a very comfortable retirement on a super scheme funded by those who have worked hard all of their working life.
    My wife has cancer and when we asked for help to pay for her drugs we got told no because she was probably going to die.
    This not a government for the people but for the selfish and the greedy
    Mar
    5th May 2015
    11:24pm
    I feel so discouraged and so disappointed with this Government who continually target the aged and the people who have been good taxpayers and the backbone of this country , whilst they avoid looking at the real wealthy, the companies and tax dodgers and the Government wastage. They seem to have no idea what's going on in the real world.
    wondering
    5th May 2015
    11:44pm
    reading a sample of the comments reminds me why i don't usually do it, the rationale is so depressing.
    the federal government will be spending $20bn subsidising 'renewables' over the next 5 years yet by it's own admission will only get $5bn punishing pensioners for working hard to provide for their retirement.
    *Imagine*
    5th May 2015
    11:58pm
    So there you go Drew.
    You State: 'The move to implement a small change to the assets test targeting the wealthiest of those on the part Age Pension who own a home and have assets of over $820,000 for a couple or $550,000 is hard for anyone to argue against.'
    It clearly is not hard for anyone to argue against, as evidenced above.
    Would you see the farmer Bushy and others in similar situations as wealthy?

    And you don't mention that asset based reductions are on a sliding scale so anyone over the threshold will be negatively affected. Not only those with more than the asset cut off values. Was that a deliberate omission or were you expecting the normal 'bash the self funded' response from posters?

    In my opinion Nick Xenophon, ACOSS and the Abbott Government that together came up with this approach need to read these posts, go back to the drawing board and come up with a more equitable approach. CPI linking is far more equitable as those with superfunds and other assets that bring them over the asset threshold are about to discover.
    Jacka
    6th May 2015
    6:28am
    To Peterrj. what kind of a lunatic are you ??? In life you should reap what you soe. if you choose to be a bludger all your life and not support anyone or anything and your found dead by the side of the road in rags who's to blame. my lifetime of working two and three jobs to support myself and my family and myself and my wife in retirement shouldn't go on bludgers. it's about time governments look after those who attempt to look after themselves Jacka
    Peterrj
    6th May 2015
    7:47am
    LOL Jacka. Bet you support living in a democracy? Right? In a democratic society consisting of two Foxes and one Chicken what do you think they will vote for in a famine? Jack just think of the greater good and how many will benefit using your money raised through new and higher taxes and the cutting of welfare from the more wealthy???? If you don't like further contributing to those in need then who are you going to vote for? Vote for the Greens??? Sorry Jacka, and all other Jacka's out there, accept your fate and get used to it as the Governemnt attack on your acquired wealth has only just started. And these changes are from a Party who promised no changes to the pension rules!!!!
    Jacka
    6th May 2015
    6:28am
    To Peterrj. what kind of a lunatic are you ??? In life you should reap what you soe. if you choose to be a bludger all your life and not support anyone or anything and your found dead by the side of the road in rags who's to blame. my lifetime of working two and three jobs to support myself and my family and myself and my wife in retirement shouldn't go on bludgers. it's about time governments look after those who attempt to look after themselves Jacka
    Peterrj
    7th May 2015
    8:07am
    Jack a what was I saying: "MORE than 172,000 pensioners will be $30 a fortnight better off under an overhaul of pension eligibility ­designed to cut part-payments to the wealthy and help struggling retirees.

    For many retirees it will represent the largest increase to their pension payments in their lifetime.

    The changes to be announced today by Social Services Minister Scott Morrison, which will form the centrepiece of next Tuesday’s Budget, will also make an extra 50,000 lower- to middle-income people on a part pension eligible for a full pension for the first time."

    Sorry Jacka but where do you think this money is coming from to allow those not as well off as yourself to give them live a better life style!!!! Get used to it as more changes are on their way .... And guess who is the financial target????
    Oars
    6th May 2015
    7:01am
    This rumour may be the case. The whole centrelink circus is a joke. They have more wacko rules than an Indian pie eater in Middlesex playing a tubor with his left toe. Why have we let this archaic set of legislation degenerate to this extent. An asset means a bloke and wifee have saved over a long period. These days assets of $1 Million is not really a wealthy person. So this latest rumour sends us a clear message to spend up all your life, have nothing over at retirement then be at the mercy of a group of fat public servants who lord all over you and treat you like a criminal. Scrub all the existing pension system and give everyone the same amount. If a small % are wealthy then they too get the pension, but will pay back most in their higher rate of tax. Simple. I just saved about $1 Billion in wages for centrelink employees and saved about 20,000 people having poor sleep. My fee is 10% thanks.
    PlanB
    6th May 2015
    7:09am
    That smirking Joe said go out and invest and borrow --nows a good time --- well wait till the interest rates go sky high like they did b4 18+% then they will foreclose on so many homes -- then Aussies will be able to RENT off the Chinese that are buying up all the real Estate and there will be more people looking for the dole --like happened in the USA.
    I do not trust these sneaky bastards in government -- there is something in the wind that is not going to be nice.
    Oars
    6th May 2015
    7:43am
    The smell in the wind is stirr fry rice, packaged in China, harvested in Viet Nam, and owned by an Australian based company with all directors living overseas for at least 25 months of the year. But -- wait for it- they are Australian citizens. HE He He - pass me my chopsticks Luoi.
    Oars
    6th May 2015
    7:43am
    The smell in the wind is stirr fry rice, packaged in China, harvested in Viet Nam, and owned by an Australian based company with all directors living overseas for at least 25 months of the year. But -- wait for it- they are Australian citizens. HE He He - pass me my chopsticks Luoi.

    6th May 2015
    8:14am
    No, it's NOT reasonable. A couple with $820,000 is likely to be worse off than a pensioner. There will be a strong incentive to draw on assets and spend quickly to qualify for benefits, because it's difficult - if not impossible - to earn the equivalent to the pension from that asset base in the current economic climate. Consider that probably $80,000 might be in a car or furniture, and it's necessary to keep at least $60,000 liquid to draw on to live, so that leaves $680,000 to invest. If you are lucky, in today's climate, you might average 7.5% return. Many will be getting less than that. It's likely to cost $6000 a year or more to administer the fund and for financial advice fees etc. (Actually, that's low!). The return is down to $45,000. A pensioner is likely to get free car registration, a rates discount, cheap public transport fares, cheap haircuts, and discounts on a wide range of purchases. These concessions can quickly add up to several thousands. Many doctors will only bulk bill pensioners - not health care card holders, so a self-funded retiree who has significant health issues will quickly find themselves worse off than a pensioner. Regardless, there is NO reward for years of hard work and sacrifice to build a nest egg for retirement. Those who spent freely in their younger years enjoy the same or better standard of living.

    And what about the income test? How is it fair to disqualify someone earning maybe $45,000 (or less) a year from investments, but pay part pensions to someone earning $70,000 a year (and many of these will not be working, but receiving a special kind of retirement pension, so there is heavy discrimination against one type of retiree who was privileged earlier in life, vs the battler who saved for himself.)

    The system is grossly unfair, and the savings are going to fund massive tax concessions on super for the very rich and to compensate for tax evasion by the rich and multinationals. It's WRONG.
    PlanB
    6th May 2015
    8:27am
    It is also making people NOT spend and so is very bad for the economy
    Grateful
    6th May 2015
    9:12am
    Is "Treasurer" Joe Hockey for real??? Here he is with a huge grin on his face telling everyone to go out and borrow and spend with our new interest rate down to the lowest in history. WHY is our interest rate so low? And, our debt levels for households is also at historic highs.
    Heaven forbid what is going to happen WHEN interest rates do start going UP and they inevitably WILL!!! The man should be sacked immediately as an absolute failed incompetent!! Didn't he do enough damage with his crazy 2014 Budget??
    PlanB
    6th May 2015
    10:32am
    My thoughts exactly Grateful, and when the interest rates got to 18+% like they did b4 everyone will be on the dole and broke and loose everything, so many of the young ones were not born when that happened and don't believe you when you tell them, well they will get a very nasty shock in a few years. IMO there is something VERY nasty in the wind
    Patriot
    7th May 2015
    6:45am
    PlanB
    That's the PLAN !!!
    More for the Bankers!
    Patriot
    7th May 2015
    7:08am
    PlanB
    .Then again, when the stockmarket collapses???

    http://www.moneynews.com/MKTNewsIntl/stock-market-crash-warren-buffett-indicator/2014/10/03/id/598461/?dkt_nbr=ufos34vz&utm_source=taboola&utm_medium=referral
    Radish
    7th May 2015
    3:59pm
    The pension is not a superannuation scheme; it is a safety net and it will be there for those who eventually may need it when they go below the assett threshold/s
    teegee
    6th May 2015
    9:20am
    my wife and i did not do a lot of things but put money by for our retirement. we do not recieve any pension from the government but will now exceed the new proposed assets ceiling. it makes us feel that we shoud have just spent when we were younger and relied on the pension or part pension to see us through. to be fair the assets test should apply to future retirees - at least they will know how much to save and enjoy any balance.
    waikune
    6th May 2015
    10:05am
    Let's cut to the chase. From Hockys point of view it only effects say 200,000 , and yes he will lose those votes, but labor will no doubt consider a self funded retire with just $800,000 in super as wealthy. Yep there will be a lot of family's surrering additional STREES and sleepless nights, but it's only 200,00.
    Brisand
    6th May 2015
    10:39am
    Wrong on both counts.
    1. It will affect far more than 200000.
    2. It starts to cut in at about $280000 Not $820000. Which includes the total amount you have in super,
    3. The loss at $ 820000 at $3.00 per $10000 = $990 per f/n less the current $495 per f/n = $12870 per year for a couple
    4. The interest on 820000, at the current 3.25% = $26650
    = $1025 per f/n which is less than the pension at $1296.80 per f/n with supliments. Plus you also lose your concession cards. Incuding pharmceuticals which will lead to people being unable to aford them and dying or costing more in hospital treatment.
    Cap
    6th May 2015
    7:32pm
    Brisand

    I think you will find that the starting point for reduction in Pension payments will cut in at about $150 - $175K for couples and $1oo - $125K for singles,so it will reduce more than 250,000 peoples pension.

    Time to order your Bank deposit boxes before they run out.
    Bonny
    7th May 2015
    1:48pm
    Here is the latest budget report.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-07/budget-government-to-outline-changes-to-age-pension/6450946
    Radish
    7th May 2015
    4:09pm
    From an online financial report today.

    "MORE than 170,000 pensioners will get about $30 a fortnight extra in their banks under the federal government’s new plan.
    The changes will help retirees with a modest amount of assets while taking the pension away from those who are much wealthier, Social Services Minister Scott Morrison says.
    The minister confirmed reports by News Corp that changes would be made to the amount of assets someone can hold before they start losing their pension and the rate at which the payment drops.
    He said nine in 10 pensioners and Australians getting pension-linked payments would either be better off or see no change.
    “We’re helping those with more modest assets,” Mr Morrison told the Nine Network on Thursday, ahead of an expected formal announcement.
    All couples who own their home and have additional assets worth less than $451,500 will be better off.
    Couples who don’t own property and hold assets worth up to $699,000 will also win from the changes.
    The new system would come into effect from January 2017, meeting the government’s promise not to change pensions before the next federal election, due in late 2016.
    More than 91,000 people on the part-pension would lose that benefit under the changes.
    But Mr Morrison said they would still get the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, which gives them concessions on medicines and bulk-billing.
    Plans to change the pension indexation rate, announced in last year’s budget, have been dumped.
    Mr Morrison expects the Greens to support the changes, ensuring their passage through parliament.
    Older Australians say the new plan is much more sensible.
    “This is a better place to start looking at any pension changes, but the proposal still needs to be scrutinised as part of a broader retirement incomes review,” Council on the Aging chief executive Ian Yates said in a statement on Thursday."
    Adrianus
    7th May 2015
    8:42pm
    Radish this is great news and really supports Abbotts claim that he is the pensioners best friend.
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    8:17pm
    Morrison is an idiot and out of touch with reality. Health Care Card holders DO NOT have access to bulk billing. Many doctors and most specialists ONLY bulk bill pensioners - not health care card holders. And many other generous benefits are accessible only to pensioners - not health care card holders.

    It is NOT great news that more than 91,000 people who saved responsibly trying to achieve independence in old age but couldn't quite accrue enough to manage without a pension will now be worse off than pensioners. I hope they all respond by going out of the country to spend half their savings and then come back and claim pensions. And I hope they tell their offspring not to save, because they have just seen what happens to those who do. Regardless, the long-term pension bill will blow out because people now have no incentive to save and those who did are forced to spend their capital and won't have enough to generate a decent income in future years so they'll have to claim a full pension, where otherwise they might have claimed a small part pension.
    bohemian
    10th May 2015
    3:57pm
    Please allow me to give an example to demonstrate the impact of the proposed pension changes.
    A couple with $830.00 investments outside of the family home, will lose the part pension, under the proposed changes to pension eligibility criteria, if it is passed through the Senate.

    1.$830.000 investment is likely to only return around $25.000 per year. This amount will fluctuate according to economic conditions.

    2. Without a part pension as a supplement, and needing to draw down from assets outside of the family home to live on, the risk will be, that before long when money is needed most, there will not be enough left to pay for future Aged Care Bonds and other fees. The consequence of whittling down the couples' assets for the remaining partner, still living in the family home, will be even more precarious, who is likely to be totally dependent on the pension and government for living and aged care fees.

    3. Aged Care Bonds in most Australian capital cities are between $550.000-$750.000, and there are also extra daily and other fees required.

    The cut off for pension eligibility criteria for people with assets outside of the family home, should be much higher than the proposed $823.000, to prevent an avalanche of those affected forced back onto the pension before too long.

    An unintended consequence of the proposed tightened pension eligibility criteria will see many retirees claiming back a part pension much sooner than otherwise, negating the supposed cost savings for the government.

    Do the sums and you will surely agree.

    Inform the members in the senate by giving them the example above, as they will be voting on to support or not support on Tuesday
    Anonymous
    11th May 2015
    8:19pm
    Spot on, Bohemian. Sad that so many just don't get it. Long term, this move will inflate pension costs. And it's grossly unfair by any measure, victimizing those who worked and saved and tried to be responsible, while rewarding those who were lazy, frivolous or extravagant, or manipulated their affairs to claim entitlements.
    Tomaso
    12th May 2015
    6:28am
    Totally agree rainey, catch 22.
    Patriot
    12th May 2015
    6:49am
    First & Before ALL

    Fix the Banking System first and make it comply to the Aust Constitution. We, the People, generate our own finances and NOT the International Bankers!!!!
    THEN, all the rest will "Fall into Place" as there will be NO shortage of Money!

    Trying as, THEY (we) are, to apply small bandages without fixing the MAIN HUGE INFECTION will just result in continued (worse) slavery and perpetuate the journey on the downward path!


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